It is one of the most natural things in a woman’s life: her monthly cycle. Yet modern day society made the actual bleeding part into something vile and shameful. The tribulations that rise because of it are discredited. When a women shows temperament or any emotion “it’s probably that time of the month”. It put’s me in a rage. A menstrual rage!
A girls first bleeding was celebrated as a holy thing. All the women of the tribe gathered and the now matured girl was celebrated. Men did not dare disturb these festivities! Women ‘in their moon’ were considered magical and menstrual blood was used for all sorts of magic. It was even considered to cure leprosy! What happened? And how can we bring the sacredness back?
It is not that clear when, where and how the female cycle became such a bad thing. My guess is, it has to do with patriarchy. But we ourselves are keeping it this way. Even among women it is not a subject easily discussed. Even the word ‘indisposed’ has a negative connotation. And frankly, I have never spoken to a women being happy and celebrating during her period.
Being female, my guess would be that PMS is part of the problem. Menstruation comes with back pain, abdominal pain, headaches and menstrual rage, among other things. That’s just the way it is, right? WRONG!
The many physical complaints surrounding menstruation are mainly of modern times. Our society does not honour the cyclical nature of not just female periods, but of life in general. It is kind of a big thing our body does, building a comfortable nest inside our womb for a new human being to grow. And nurturing as we are by nature, when it does not happen that month, a completely new nest needs to be made and the old one is thrown out! No wonder we’re tired!
But there is no room for this natural phenomenon to be honoured as it should be. And thus our bodies protest. We hurt, we scream, we cry for the much needed rest and attention our bodies crave during this time. But since we don’t call in sick on a monthly basis or take these days off, we endure. Despising every step of the way.
To me, ‘period’ refers to the entire cycle. The bleeding occurs only during a couple of days. Menstruation seems wrong to me as well, I mean, men really shouldn’t have anything to do with it. And yes, I know it derives from menses (the inner lining of the uterus), but still.
Terms like ‘shark week’, ‘crimson tide’ or ‘Carrie’ do not add positivity to the prejudices. And even though I am all for nerd-references, the Game of Thrones-inspired ‘Red Wedding’ does not float my boat. ‘Moon time’, ‘being in the moon’ and ‘Mother Nature’s gift’ are a bit too cumbersome for me.
I am all for calling it what it is: bleeding.