After 50 days of anticipation, I’m finally on my period.
In the words of Lily Allen:
Periods, we all get periods (not factually correct but we’ll sausage roll with it) every month (or 50 days in my case) (I essentially gave up menstruating for Lent) that’s what the theory is
so why then after all these years do we still feel awkward talking about them? From making our parents buy the hygeine gear on our behalf, to disguising our dysmenorrhoea as ‘tummy ache’, as a population we’ve got to admit that we are period phobes. Therefore, I am going to make us talk about Strawberry Jam Disasters to make up for the lack of conversation in the world: the things they make us do, the ways they make us feel and how we can prepare for them (so excited to discuss the app that will change your life).
Before we begin I feel like I should set the mood by explaining the term ‘Strawberry Jam Disaster‘ (sorry if you’re eating). Basically, it involved me, 2012, the white seats of my grandparents caravan- you can see where this is going, right?- and a cheeky leaky of blood. Which caused my grandma to call a family meeting because ‘someone’s spilt jam on the Laura Ashley cushion’. Cue lots of Google searches to find out how to remove JAM from fabric. Jess 1 Periods 0. They have been known as SJDs ever since (and Grandma still doesn’t know the truth).
I’m probably pregnant: Even though I’m clearly not, every month I convince myself that I am the second Virgin Mary- I would birth Jessus, and start a relijion, full of relijess people- but what scares me most is that my doctor wouldn’t believe me. In fact, no one would believe you. How did Mary get round that one? Or more importantly, my period is always late, why do I continue to irrationally believe that I’ve been knocked up by a toilet seat or, worse, by looking at Jamie Dornan’s facial hair.
Chair checking: This was super important during exam season last year when I was sat behind a variety of different desks in which the seats weren’t red and therefore I had to check after every paper that I hadn’t leaked anyway. The cheeky chair check has soon become a compulsary part of period life (also performed on the mattress protector in the morning once you’ve woken up).
Cramping My Style: The pains are BAD. And because it’s not socially acceptable to tell people I’m on my period, I have to go round telling people I’m ill but-you-can’t-catch-it-so-please-don’t-edge-away-from-me-argh-no-COME-BACK-AND-LOVE-ME-it’s-not-blady-norovirus. It’s also irritating because cramps aren’t seen as a bad enough to be excused from class, even though it feels like my uterus is being used as a football pitch but the ball is a life size replica of the bicycle from ET and instead of footballers they’re members of UKIP. With misogynistic views. And knives. However, I am hopeful that this is changing after ‘Coexist’ announced that they’d be the first company in Britain providing days off for women when they had unbearable period pain. Progress at its finest.
They’re style crampers in other ways aswell. Especially the whole turning your choerently structured days into 8 hour durations in which you try not to catch TSS thing. When the big P strikes everything goes a bit tits up really.
The Graveyard of Pants: If there was one element of periods that people were more open about, I would want it to be this. Teamales, how many pairs of pants (British definition) have you silmultaeneously loved and ruined because you shouldn’t be ‘on’ for at least another three days and have woken up caught off guard by Mother Nature once again? I must throw away at least 7 pairs a year (which is like £35 in Topshop terms) for various menstrual related reasons, yet no one ever talks about this! How am I supposed to know if anyone else does this if everyone’s super secret about it? There could be a boyshort recycling point round the corner but I wouldn’t know because this info never gets shared.
I don’t have a Clue: Okay so dis is da gud bit I promise. The app that made my life like 82x easier. Clue. I don’t know how the app store catagorises it (and I can’t be bothered to check but it’s probably under ‘lifesavers’) but it’s honestly so helpful in doing what I thought was impossible: tracking my periods. Normally, I’m like it could be today? Or next week? Or the 17th? So how great is it when Clue predicts it all for me- as well as how productive I’m going to be, what mood I’ll be in and the condition of my hair (vital for fringe life). Clue is the period babe and hopefully the key to normalising conversations about menstration. Imagine how beautiful it would be, scrolling through your friend’s phone (pretending you haven’t seen the nudes) and then being like OH KEWL YOU HAVE CLUE TOO and then having a full on chat about mooncups. This is the future.
I hope that this has been at least vaguely #relatable (otherwise it’s just me and my uterus alone chilling in the corner of tampon kingdom) and feel free to comment with some of your cringey period stories so we can bond over womenly stuff. Thank you for reading and I hope you’re all having a bloody good period. (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself)