The name sounds hopelessly Victorian— I’d heard the term and thought of dressing gowns, ruffled and prim, or suitors waving salts around a lady on a fainting couch, not this theater, with its cold table, its pulleys and knives, not this race to sew me shut before I spill. Not me. Not then. But in my present tense, invalid, unstable, incompetent, I catalog my faults and hopes. I’m but a flimsy, bulging pouch. Where is the I I was a day ago? Behind the drape, the surgeon tugs and frowns until I’m corseted. Knotted and braced, I’m to be sent home to bed, chastened and chaste.