Hi! I’m Suzan.
I began my menstrual journey at age 15 with a belted pad & knowledge that a week each month my body would betray me.
I was lost where periods were concerned & embarrassed to ask for help/advice because all my friends started at 12. My periods were so heavy that I wore plastic panties and still leaked often. I remember leaking on my clothing & what I sat on at school, on the bus & at home.
No one talked about periods. I thought my experience was unique – that I was odd. Embarrassment kept me silent. Periods made me sad. I hated my periods, dreading when it would start & the messes I would make, & the embarrassment I would feel.
Tampons were my salvation & I used them religiously — I would often use 2 or 3 tampons together. I got TSS at age 21 but kept using tampons – I was more afraid of leaks than of dying from TSS. I slipped into the pattern of making it through each month by hanging onto the fact that for one week I would like who I was.
That pattern began to unravel as a friend shared with me the wonders of my cycle & especially the joys of menstruation and revealed the truth that I am “me” every day of my cycle. And that “me” is awesome no matter if it’s Cycle Day (CD) 1 with cramps and flow, CD 14 with ovulation, or PMSing CD 26. Each day of my cycle offers something uniquely mine.
My life changed forever when I began to embrace my cycle. Instead of working against my period, I began to work with her & she began to reward me in ways I had never imagined. I began to enjoy my cycle, even the parts I had previously hated. I looked for the strengths that menstruation brought and sought ways to work with my body during that time. Menstruation became the highlight of my cycle.
Currently my work as a menstrual activist and educator includes many roles: mentor, friend, writer, speaker, teacher, and perpetual student. I also serve as the Director of Connectivity for You ARE Loved (a non-profit that raises awareness about TSS) and as the Manager of North American Operations for Lunette (makers of an amazing reusable menstrual cup).
I would love to hear from you! Lets connect:
Period Wise is devoted to openness about menstruation and to assisting women of all ages in becoming more period wise.