I am writing this post as an introduction to Papillon's posts which follow, by way of an explanation for those who come to the story late.
Papillon is a young French woman, of Senegalese descent who suffered Type II genital cutting at the age of four. Her posts tell of her decision to undergo reconstructive surgery, the processes she went through, and of her attempt to reconcile what had happened to her.
I can't now remember exactly how I came across Papillon, but it was through a French blog, just after she had started telling her story in February 2007. I asked if anyone was thinking of translating it into English but nobody took me up on it, so I did it myself.
I translated each post as soon as I could after Papillon published in French, so the combination of my haste with my far from perfect French has meant that the results are less than wonderful. I have decided not to go back over them because it does demonstrate clearly that they are translations and I didn't want it to sound as though it were written by an English speaker.
Papillon is a wonderful writer and I believe this shines through even this rough translation, as does her humour. She appears to have stopped blogging, the last post having been about four months ago. I hope this means that she has fully recovered from her reconstructive surgery and that she is getting on with her life.
At the bottom of each post is a link to the original in French, and to the next post in the series.