Tag Archives: period

When a 7 Year Old Girl Gets Her Period

Do you remember what it was like to be 7 years old?Age 7 - S

I was looking through Mom’s photo albums recently and came across pictures of me at age 7.  Wow, that was such a fun age!  Ages 7-10 were some of my most memorable years – filled with amazing fun and awesome vacations.

It was a carefree time – an innocent time – play time.

As I looked at the pictures, I recalled two worries I had at that age.

  1. Mom’s vacuum (it ate my Barbie’s shoes and I believed it could eat ME if given a chance).
  2. Getting all E’s in school (E was for excellent – S, for satisfactory, was not deemed good enough).

Menarche was not a word in my vocabulary.  And, the only period I knew of belonged at the end of a sentence.

When a 7 year old girl gets her period, she has a lot more on her mind than picking up her toys and getting good grades. Check out my guest post: What happens when a 7 year old girl gets her period? and see what menarche is like for many girls.

The Society for Menstrual Cycle Research blog re: Cycling has focused on Menarche the entire month of September.  Loads of terrific info on menarche and menstruation can be found in the guest posts.  Be sure to scroll down through the September, 2015 posts. You won’t want to miss any of them!

Finding Normal

Everyone knows what normal is…right?

Normal is…normal.

It’s behavior and activity that is common.  It’s what we assume is experienced by most, if not all.  It’s what’s expected. It’s what we’re accustomed to.

Did you know that what you consider normal might not be “normal” at all?

Did you know that your normal menstrual experience is unique to you? Why? Because YOU are unique and all that goes into making you who you are affects you – uniquely.

While the words you use to describe your experience are words commonly used by most women to describe the normal ins and outs, ups and downs of menstruation, these words are unique because of the meanings we attach to them individually.

After all, it’s normal for some women to experience heavy flow, right?  And, we all know what “heavy” means.

No.  We don’t.

YOU know what you mean when you give your flow a designation of light or heavy to signify amount and duration.  But, I don’t know unless you elaborate.  What I know is what I mean when I say “heavy period” and I naturally assume you mean the same thing.

If you tell me, “I’m having cramps” I”m going to filter your comment through what I’ve experienced myself and suggest what’s worked for me.  And, if my experience has been to have very little pain period wise, I’m going to make an assumption that may be wrong.

While it’s common for women to experience flow that is heavier on some days than it is on others, and it’s somewhat expected to experience some discomfort at some point during your cycle, considering either “normal” is not period wise.

However, knowing what is normal for YOU is period wise.

Finding normal is important.  And, understanding what your normal is and how it differs from what other women experience helps us see how unique we truly are.  And, it can also reveal to us a need to take a closer look at what we assume to be normal but may, in reality, be quite abnormal.

The only way to find normal is to give voice to what we are experiencing and do so using unique words that avoid general / normal terms like “heavy” or “light” or “crampy.”

Break the pattern of over-generalization and let’s get specific.

Find your normal and compare it with the normal experiences of others. I guarantee you, it will be an awakening long overdue.

If what you discover creates questions or causes alarm – talk with your doctor using specific terms and accurate counts.

Menstruation is not a time for generalization.

We are uniquely ourselves during that brief time in our cycle. Find your normal and you will find yourself. Share your normal and you share yourself with others. Embrace the normal of another and you gain a depth of appreciation for and understanding of another woman and her experience of normal that will enrich your own experience.

Finding normal is period wise.

What’s Your Cycle Day (CD) and Why You Should Know

If I asked you, “What’s your CD,” could you tell me?

Could you tell me without looking at the calendar when your last period started? (That day would be CD 1.)

Why should you know your CD?

How else can you live fully in it and lean hard into it?

Each CD has its own strengths.  If you don’t know what your CD is how will you know how to plan for and use each CD’s strengths to the max?

For women who cycle, especially those cycling naturally (not using hormonal birth control), knowing your CD and the strengths that belong to it can empower you in ways that may surprise you.

I challenge you – keep a brief journal each day of your cycle for one month.  Record the strengths that you note on each day.

Perhaps on one day you want to organize or clean house. Another day, you may prefer to write.  And another cycle day, you may feel chatty.  You may find that there are days that indicate it would be good to start a diet and other CDs can alert you to stay away from the kitchen or you will eat everything in sight.

Knowing what CD you can expect which strengths to surface on and when to expect them to be the strongest can be empowering.

Give it a try.

Be period wise.

(Looking for a fun way to track your cycle?  Check out Val Carey’s TOTM Period Planner.)

Concealed Carry Holster

What do you do when you’re out and about in a skirt and need to keep menstrual products handy, but don’t want to carry a purse?

What about a lace garter that could easily double as a tampon / pad / cup  / wipe holster garter?

(Click here for more information.)

Most of us prefer concealed carry when it comes to feminine needs.

Thinking outside the box can open the door to intriguing ideas and provide simple solutions.

Be period wise. Be open to new ideas and solutions outside the ordinary.





Living Within Your Cycle

As one who no longer flows, I can attest that menstruation is an important and necessary component to a woman’s emotional makeup.

As my body becomes more and more accustomed to the lessening of hormones that menopause brings, I find that my mind wishes to become so, but is as yet unable.

I still seek my cycle day (CD) and the knowledge of where I am within my cycle.  If I detect ovulation, I eagerly anticipate the changes that will lead to menstruation.

Yes, even without a uterus, my body signals when menstruation begins.  Menstruation is more than physical – more than a matter of blood flowing from your vagina.

Menstruation is mental as well. It’s a welcome change…a needed and necessary change.

How often have you said/heard, “I’ll be glad when my period starts!” ?

Why do you suppose we say that? What is it about menstruation that’s so welcome?

I wish all who cycle eagerly anticipated the changes each cycle day brought and welcomed the strengths present in them.

Living within your cycle is an awesome way to live.

It’s empowering.

It’s liberating.

It’s period wise.

Your Daughter’s First Period

Whether or not your daughter has experienced her first period, take a look at Kate’s delightful post on Stay At Home Mum’s site.

Kate offers puberty and period wise advice, as well as sage mom advice, too.

As you will see below, Kate urges moms – talk to your daughter before she gets their period.

They grow up so quickly and the baby girl you brought home is no longer a tiny little bundle. You’ve been there to help her learn and grow and have watched her experience so many new things. The time is now coming for your little girl to blossom into a young lady. There’ll be plenty of mood swings, grumbling, some stubbornness, pimples and her first period.  It can be a very scary thing for young girls, the thought of getting her period is really quite daunting (whether they admit it or not). You’ll know when it’s almost time and she’ll start to notice some things too. Hair growing in different places, skin condition changing, sleep patterns may change, her body will begin to develop differently, she’ll start getting cramps and a multitude of other things. The best way to approach puberty is with knowledge. Help your daughter by supplying her with all the information she will need BEFORE she gets her first period to help her reach this milestone in her life without being scared. Even young children ask questions, be honest with them and start with the BASICS when they are beginning to ask questions and spread the information out. Don’t expect to just sit down and talk about it all and think that’s the end of it. It’s a lot to take in and some of it may not be age appropriate depending on when you start your talks. Read more.

What puberty or period wise advice would you add to what Kate offers?


Avoid Taint

On Facebook I found this picture with the comment:

Gotta avoid that taint

And, beneath that comment was another:


In all sincerity, please tell me…what is so funny about that?

For those who don’t know, “taint” refers to the part of the perineum found between the genitals and anus.

Now, what’s so funny about that?

Oh, I know – the joke goes like this:

t’ain’t your balls and t’ain’t your ass.

And, for those of us without testicles, it would be

t’ain’t your vulva and t’ain’t your anus.

Again I ask, what’s so funny about the perineum?

Personally, I think the reason for the term “taint” and the laughter it provokes lies more in our discomfort with our bodies and the bodies of others – and in our ignorance of the real names and functions of the parts of our anatomy (and of the anatomy of the sex opposite our own).

The horror is that we pass this attitude of ignorant humor on to our children and perpetuate the legacy of stupidity with words like

  • taint
  • dick/peter
  • pussy
  • cunt
  • balls
  • cooter
  • beaver
  • that time of the month/aunt flo/on the rag

What’s wrong with calling a vagina a vagina and a penis a penis? Why do we need nicknames for certain body parts and bodily functions? Why are we so uncomfortable as a society when it comes to being human?

Do we think we are being cute by teaching our kids to use these terms?

How cute do you think it is when a 35 year old woman goes to her GYN and is unable to explain what her problem is and where because all she knows to call that part of her anatomy is “my pussy.”


Cute is not the term that comes to mind.  And, I guarantee you it’s not the first that comes to her mind, either.

Be period wise.  Be body wise. Learn the terms. Use the terms!


The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pads

Daughter’s doctor appointment drew me to the heart of our city, up to the 9th floor of the Doctor’s Building.

While Daughter was entertaining her doctor, I slipped from the waiting room and paid a brief and welcome visit to the 9th floor women’s restroom.

A quick check revealed that I was alone.  A quick peek into each stall encouraged me to choose the middle one – third from the entrance.

Another woman entered the restroom as I entered the stall and closed the door.  She chose the first stall.

Eager to release the coffee I’d enjoyed earlier, I paid little attention to what was happening two stalls away from me.

At least, I didn’t until I heard a commotion coming from the first stall.

Rattling, clanging, banging and a few softly spoken curse words prompted me to ask, “Is there anything you need that I can get for you??”

There was silence.

And, then a woman spoke.

“Yes, this toilet tissue dispenser won’t release any paper.  Would you mind terribly handing me some tissue?  I hate to ask, but…I’m in a bit of a bind.” (Nervous laughter ensued.)

“Sure,” I said.  Give me just a sec to pull up my jeans and wash my hands, and I’ll hand you all you need.”

“Thanks!” she offered.

With zipped jeans and clean hands, I entered the empty stall next to hers and pulled off a large amount of tissue and slipped it under the stall into her waiting hand.

She thanked me and I returned to the sink where I fiddled with my hair and smoothed my eye brows…looked up my nose and between my teeth…ran water…washed my hands again…dried them…sent a text…smoothed my shirt…dabbed at the water I’d managed to splash onto it….

And, then I heard a soft expletive uttered in the same feminine voice I’d spoken with just minutes before.

Then I heard the toilet flush.  And, immediately, heard it flush again.

Her door handle jiggled and the stall door opened.  I was standing at the sink, washing my glasses, and glanced into the mirror to see her exit the stall.

As she approached the sink, I stepped toward the paper towel dispenser.  As I reached for a paper towel, the young woman spoke.

“Would you believe that not only could I not get any toilet paper, there also was not a trash thingie in the stall?”

“Unbelievable!” I uttered.  I stepped to my right and turned to face the open door of the stall she had vacated just seconds before.  The water in the toilet bowl was still moving.

The toilet paper dispenser was jammed.  And, behind it was the hollow metal frame that held the feminine hygiene trash receptacle, but the receptacle was missing.

I turned to look at the young woman. She had not exited the stall with anything but her purse.  And, she had not thrown anything into the trash. Of that I was certain.

“I had to flush it,” she said.  “It took two tries before it finally went down and stayed down!”

“It?” I asked.

“Yes, the pad I was wearing. There was no place to put it…no where to put it…no trash thingie in the stall,” she said.

“Oh…you flushed your pad…wow,” I said out loud before I caught myself.

“Yeah, I mean…what was I supposed to do? Bring it out of the stall with me and throw it away here in front of everyone? I mean, really? That would have been SOOO embarrassing!” She said this with eyes wide and great sincerity.

I stood looking at this precious young woman who had just flushed her period pad down the toilet because she was too embarrassed to bring it out of the stall with her.

As she carefully washed her hands and glanced at me in the mirror, I offered: “It would have been okay if you had thrown it away out here.  In fact, I wouldn’t have even noticed if you had.  People don’t pay attention to what other people do as much as we think they do.  Just because we are aware doesn’t mean anyone else is. And, remember…this is the women’s restroom. It’s where WOMEN go, where WOMEN gather, where WOMEN take care of needs. Everyone who comes in here knows about periods and understands the need to dispose of used products. It’s like the sisterhood of the traveling pads. They are either traveling into the stall or out of it.  Don’t be embarrassed.  It’s normal.  It’s natural. And, it’s not something we need to be ashamed of or feel a need to hide from others.”

There was a pause and I waited for her thoughts concerning what I’d said.

What came instead was, “Do you think it will stop up the plumbing?”

“The pad?” I asked.

“Yes, do you think it will?” she asked.

“I don’t know. Personally, I hope it keeps on traveling! But, I’m out of here before it has a chance to do otherwise and they come looking for the one who flushed it!” I said with a smile.

“Me, too!” she squealed. “Let’s get out of here, sister!”

And, we did…exiting the women’s room loudly enough to turn heads and earn a stern look from the receptionist.

The sisterhood of the traveling pads…I was in the presence of many women today as I went from place to place.  I wondered…how many were menstruating?  And, of those who were…how many belonged to the sisterhood of the traveling pads?

What Would You Do Differently?

If you knew that your next period would be your last…

  • what would you do differently?
  • what would you like to experience during it?
  • what would you like to share of it? and, with whom?
  • would you be more open about the fact that you are menstrual?
  • would you invite your daughter to experience your flow in some way? to view your used product?
  • would you share your experience with your best friend?

If you knew that your next period would be your last, is there anything that you would feel had been left undone? or, anything you might regret not doing once it’s no longer an option?

Most women do not know when their last period will be (unless radical surgery ends it) and never consider how they will feel and whether they will have regrets when they discover that their last period was, indeed, their last.

Why wait?  Why risk leaving important things undone? Why not, at your next period, do the period wise things that came to mind when I asked the questions above?