Periods have been a pain for me since they started. For so many years they were incredibly painful and debilitating to the point where I could not function normally for at least 3 days every month. As time has gone on the pain can be less or more each month with no rhyme or reason, but the length of time of feeling yuk for a week leading up to and the week of my period had worsened meaning that half the month I either wanted to cry a lot, eat my own head off or throw someone through the window. Sometimes all three of those feelings would be there all at once, such fun. Reading articles telling me to embrace the joy of my feminity was really helpful – not. Add into this the constant advertising, showing me that if I used a certain sanitary product I would not only feel amazing enough to be able to go sailing/roller skating/sky diving/disco dancing/become a DJ but I would be able to do all of those things whilst wearing tiny white shorts, so inspiring, all these years and if I had only been using that particular sanitary towel or discreet tampon in cheerfully coloured wrappers then I would not have had this pain? The need to be surgically attached to a hot water bottle, eat an entire cake in one sitting or cry because I’d run out of biscuits would have all gone? I would no longer feel like I had a tree taking root in my womb and want to wear the biggest pair of pants I could find underneath some attractively over washed, slightly short in the leg, saggy baggy trousers, but instead feel inspired to wear sparkly clean tight fitting white shorts? Apparently I would have not only wanted to do all those exciting, adventurous things but I would suddenly have the ability to do so? It’s a miracle, I cannot believe I have missed out all this time…
Who makes these adverts? At certain times of the month I would really like to meet them and have a conversation. I cannot believe I am the only woman in the world that has trouble standing on her own two feet whilst in that two week window (it’s actually tricky for me at any time of the month to not fall over fresh air) let alone balancing on roller skates or a bicycle in those ever present teeny tiny white shorts. I am naturally a clumsy person, it could be because I am ungrounded, not present, whatever, or it could just be that I am my mothers daughter and clumsiness is genetic so therefore not my fault. Whatever the cause it is there and when in that two week window, magnified hugely.
A few years ago my partner bought himself a very expensive laptop, he needs it for his work so it is a pretty essential piece of equipment. Imagine his surprise when I not only handed him a cup of tea over the top of his laptop but then my hand with an apparent will of its own tipped the other way round pouring the entire contents of the mug over his shiny new laptop. I can’t help it, some involuntary twitch thing happens and I hurl cups or plates across the room, my arm or hand just does its own thing. My legs and feet are not much more helpful, I have tripped over nothing and ended up trampling every new seedling we had just planted in the veg patch. I have kicked bowls across the kitchen floor smashing things that I treasure, it just happens. This mornings event has inspired me to write about this. I woke up and whilst still in a very dozy state realised I was leaking and the towel I always put underneath me the first few days was wrapped around the dog. I jumped out of bed at a funny angle and crash-landed into the bedside table which wobbled vigorously knocking over the bedside lamp which flipped upside down and switched itself on. I am then blinded by the spotlight in my eyes whilst trying to shuffle out the room and disentangle the towel from the reluctant dog to try to prevent making a mess on the way to the bathroom. My partner opened one eye and just looked at me, smiled and closed his eyes again. The good thing now is that he is no longer astounded at the amazing things I can achieve whilst I have my period, he is no longer shocked at the devastation that can be caused by a simple act like making a cup of tea or trying to feed the chickens (I have managed to get myself tangled in the gate before and fallen into the chicken enclosure frightening the life out of everybody). We just work round it ie I never go near his computer with any sort of liquid or heavy object in my hands.
I have tried various therapies and supplements but nothing really helped for very long before my body went back into the loop of the same sort of pattern. However, I am currently on month two of taking a herbal mix made for me by a very wonderful and loving herbalist. I am hopeful that the pain seems to be gradually lessening and that the emotional side of things is slowly changing and coming back into some sort of normal balance, early days but the changes are showing. However, I now understand that there are some things that are just your nature and perhaps I have to accept that my underlying nature is a clumsy one and no amount of herbs or treatments is going to change that. I am OK with this, I can accept this is my true nature and I can laugh with myself, at myself and generally be OK with it. If you suffer in similar ways then do not feel alone as you certainly aren’t, get help with pain, there is always answers and you truly do not have to cope with that each month, the emotional side of things can be helped too. Do what you can to make changes to make life easier for yourself but above all, accept yourself in all your quirky, wonky, non-white short wearing or falling off roller skate ways.
To the advertisers, try as you might, you are never going to convince me about the miraculous benefits of your sanitary products, no amount of persuasion is going to tempt me into those tiny white shorts. However, if you ever decide to get real in your advertising and want a realistic woman wearing ten year old saggy clothing falling over fresh air and throwing cups of tea around the room, then I am your girl.