God it’s embarrassing isn’t it? The Curse, periods, that time of the month, on the rag, cousin red, on the blob, have the painters in, the crimson wave, on the flowers, and, wait for it, women’s troubles.
Oh man, that is the one that really sticks: Women’s Troubles?
Why has the monthly cycle that every single female (more or less) experiences from the moment she begins to enter womanhood become our troubles? Why has this natural cycle become so shameful, so accursed, become literally: the curse?
Is this really the message we should continue to teach our daughters, nieces and goddaughters and, even, ourselves? Why should this be the last taboo – the one subject that men cannot bare to mention, or even women – for that matter, without shuddering or feeling embarrassed.
Yet this natural rhythm follows the waning and waxing of the moon. The moon regulates the movement of liquid on earth and its 29.5 day cycle is very similar to the natural cyclical cycle of female menstruation, which runs between 28-30 days, suggesting that women can and do ovulate around the full moon and that their hormone levels are changing during its waxing and waning.
How cool is that?
Last week, I was incredibly lucky to be invited to join a women’s circle. It was a wonderful, healing and bonding experience for all concerned. Our cycles were discussed and although a natural embarrassment was felt, we questioned why this area of feminity is so utterly, deliberately cloaked. And why a kind of simple cover-all, men – so often use, when we ladies are stressed, or angry or just plain pissed off – is: “Oh it’s that time of the month is it?” And think they are clever or in touch?
Indeed, several women amongst us revealed that their mothers had never so much as had the courage to explain that this eventuality would happen, they found themselves one day at age 12 or 13 bleeding, and not understanding why, and feeling, naturally, terrified.
But, we cannot blame their mothers, this behaviour was, just a product of the culture of the time. We have progressed since 1970 haven’t we?
Maybe not, apparently in 1997 Johnson & Johnson went looking for a female celebrity to promote its sanitary towel brand of the time. The company found no celebrity willing to associate themselves with such a product, even the Spice Girls refused; so much for girl power.
But can we gently change this kind of thinking? By informing the up coming fertile and youth-filled girls in our lives, maybe we can alter the path and stop this area of womanhood continuing to be one of shame and anxiety. Perhaps we could celebrate a first period? or is that taking it a step too far, too quickly?
Like the Navajo Indians?
What do you think?