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menstruation

tampons, free bleeding, kiran Gandhi, feminism, periods without tampons, patriarchy

Cause she’s free, free bleeding!

Sorry, I just can’t get that damn Tom Petty song out of my head ever since I read that article about the woman running the London marathon while on her period with absolutely no feminine hygiene help. Tampons…we don’t need no stinking tampons (or maxi pads for that matter). We are woman, watch us bleed.

A few months ago, Kiran Gandhi (a Harvard MBA) chose to run the London marathon, “unencumbered by the ‘absurd’ presence of a chaffing ‘wad of cotton’ wedged between her legs.” And so began the third-wave feminist movement of “free-bleeding.”

First, it was the bush making a comeback, then ladies refusing to shave their legs on principal and now, dying pit hair and free bleeding. Look, I am a woman and I am loud and proud about women’s rights. Hell, I’m even a bit of a fanatic. I like causes and, if we’re being honest, women and minorities are two of my favorites because I am both.

I don’t think women should be banished to red tents and dirty sheds because they are on their periods. But damn, you couldn’t pay me money to run around London bleeding out because that is exactly what I would be doing. It would look like someone tried to kill me by stabbing me to death in my vagina. All of London would look like a traveling crime scene and quite frankly, I don’t want to be known as free bleeding Debi. Plus, it feels a bit unhygienic. I mean, my sheets are white!

I mean, no one’s going to invite me to their house anymore. Party invites and standing up in weddings, all gone forever. No one wants to take the chance I’m going to show up and damage their goods or cause a spectacle. I mean, I’m just finally living down all those sweater ass covered periods of my youth. I wore a sweater one week of every month from the ages of 12-18…just in case of an accident. Then I discovered tampons, left the flying winged diapers behind and moved on with my life.

What’s all this period-shaming shit about? I’m not embarrassed by my period. The patriarchy didn’t curse me with shark week, it’s biology. It’s for the babies! Who doesn’t love babies?

Honestly, tampons are a pain in the vagina. I get it! Have you ever got your lip caught between those two cardboard parts of the applicator? That shit hurts like a mother effer. Or have you ever completely forgotten that you had one in and put another one in and shoved the previous one into your brain? It hurts. Or the worse is when you do it quickly; go on about your business only to realize 15 minutes into a board meeting that you are sitting on the inner cardboard tube of the applicator. It’s like sitting on a broom handle….in your vagina while having a conversation. And please don’t even get me started on the diapers that are an excuse for maxi pads once you give birth. My God, I need a f*cking diaper between the pee and the hemorrhaging. Why didn’t people warn me?

 So, free bleeding?

Look, I get it. It is 2015 and we want all the equal rights and I think women should be able to do everything men do, if they want to go topless, serve in the army on the front lines, open all the goddamn doors they want to…GO.FOR.IT! But me, I can do all that but I like it when my husband opens doors for me and pulls out my chair. I like chivalry and manners. I love respect for women. I don’t want to run around free bleeding and covered in body hair like a savage to prove a point. I’ll burn the shit out of my bras though, I hate those things.

As far as I’m concerned, I’ll share. Boys, you want the free bleeding? The monthly hemorrhage accompanied by tender breasts, cramps and PMS? You can have it. I will buy all of your drinks.

I’m all about live and let live but can I please live with my tampons and without the mortification of the entire world knowing when I’m menstruating. Can we just allow me that one private dignity? As for Kiran Gandhi, I say go girl. If this is how you want to celebrate your womanhood, you do it loud and proud.

How do you feel about the free bleeding phenomenon?

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girl,bench, period, auntflo,menstruation,gym

Your period, that magical time of month when everything in the world irritates you.

Remember when you were in 7th grade, way back before your mom would allow you to wear those whorish tampons that all the “cool” girls were wearing? Remember the good old days of wearing maxi-pads that had wings and were as big as a 747? Way before “First Moon Period Parties.” Back when your period, snuck up on you like a ninja and shivved you, usually someplace public, when you least expected it like right in the middle of confirmation or during your first boy/girl dance. Then you bled out like the near survivor of a shark attack? Way before your lady bits had a one of a kind special delivery in the mail each month.Hello aunt Flo, how the hell are ya? Yeah, good times.

Remember wearing a sweater “just in case” you had to McGyver it into an “accident” hiding cover up because you wore WHITE pants to school during your PERIOD? Yeah, me too. Puberty sucked for me. Besides the sprouting of all the hair in all the weird places and boobs growing (or not) you felt like a freak with pimples, greasy hair and if you were really lucky braces. But even with all of this, there was one silver lining …the missing of the gym class, more specifically swimming. You got to instead sit in the bleachers and hang with the other afflicted girls.

In middle school I was an awkward, gangly thing of a girl who had a growth spurt in every direction. I lost my center of gravity and any shred of self-esteem went into witness protection. But the period, as new and disgusting as it was to me in those first months, saved me from having to put on a bathing suit and jump in the water, emerging like the worlds ugliest drowned rat because, oh yeah, my dad wouldn’t let me shave my legs so, well, you can imagine what all that hair looked like wet. I did what any Latina girl my age would do, I grew a small mustache to distract people from everything else. No, not really. Not on purpose anyways. At least in regular gym class, I could cover it all up with nifty 1980’s tube socks.

From the moment I figured out that my “period’ could get me out of swimming, I immediately had at least 2 a month. That was 2 weeks a month of sitting on the bench writing notes and talking about boys. It was glorious while it lasted and then in 8th grade I got a female gym teacher who I’m certain charted my cycle because it was back to one week on the bench and 3 looking like a drowned Mexican rat. Once again and for the next 28 years, my period never got me out of anything. In fact it got me into a lot of hard work, what with all the sex, pregnancies and children and all. Until today.

My period rescued me and used its power for good and not evil, for once.

In the past year, my girls have really begun to understand puberty and what is going to happen thanks to our dog who went into heat. They both know that the hair, boob fairy and period are all on its way. I’ve also assured them this is all very natural and I will make sure that they have all the necessary items available, including a razor, an aesthetician for those out of control eyebrows and lip hair, Midol, a good bra and dark chocolate. We are prepared.

Then this morning, I woke up feeling more than a little crampy on day 4 of flood gate shark week so I said to the girls, “ Girls, I don’t think we can go to the pool today. “ It was met with the expected, whiney, “WHY??????” (because to be honest they beg me daily to go to the pool, rain or shine) and I calmly told them the truth. “Well, I’m having my period and it’s one of those “heavy” days. I’m feeling really crampy and I just don’t think my tampon would survive the walk down to the pool.” To which my 7-year-old ( yes, the same one who yelled that I was going into heat once before in a public restroom) knowingly shook her head, turned to her sister and said, “See, mom’s going through puberty again.” Then she said, “It’s okay mommy. That would be gross. Let’s do crafts.” No argument, no long sigh, no whining.

I don’t know about you but I’m thinking I might be having two periods a month again. I figure she’s got at least 4/5 years before she figures out any different. God, I love being a woman.

Period party, anyone?

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shark week ,pms

Shark week is not my favorite week of the month. Shark week (menstruating and PMS, in case you were confused) is just one more thing that I have to deal with on my already full Mommy plate. Shark week is that one week of the month when my entire body rages against me and decides to attempt yet another mutiny. Ain’t no mutiny like a shark week mutiny! Damn you, shark week!

shark week, PMS, living authentically online, Domain .ME, blogging, digital influencer, writer, blogger

Kids, this is your mom before shark week.

But then something happens. My head begins to spin. My breasts ache. I am ravenous to eat things like hot fudge sundaes with jalapeno chips at will. My ovaries feel as if a tiny angry troll is squeezing them. I’m bloated like a dead fish (no correlation to the smell, I smell like a summer’s day, damn it!) and as if by some cruel joke, it’s the one week of the entire month that my husband finds me completely sexually irresistible (well, that and ovulation week. Conspiracy, I tell you!).

My ovaries feel as if a tiny angry troll is squeezing them. I’m bloated like a dead fish (no correlation to the smell, I smell like a summer’s day, damn it!) and as if by some cruel joke, it’s the one week of the entire month that my husband finds me completely sexually irresistible (well, that and ovulation week. Conspiracy, I tell you!). New baby? Who dis? Ain’t nobody got no time for that.

Unfortunately for him, I am like a hybrid between a Praying Mantis and Black Widow spider. All I want to do is rip his head off and eat my young, not necessarily in that order. Pretty much, if you breathe you are in danger of incurring my bloody, hormonal rage and for some reason, I swear my teeth get bigger.

Shark week, PMS

This is Your Mom on Shark Week

For your safety, I am listing here a few ways to survive Shark Week without Losing a limb;

  • No sudden movements or loud sounds, Mama usually has a migraine during shark week. Move slowly and quietly for optimal chance of survival rate.
  • For the love of God, please don’t hide my Diva Cup or flush all the tampons. I’m talking to you fruit of my loins, this could result in Mommy’s head spinning and/or completely popping off.
  • Have chocolate and carbs in the house. A pizza with a side of French fries and a Ding Dong usually does the trick. And NO, don’t remind me that I’m on a diet. There is no reasoning with me when I am on shark week.
  • Don’t ask me any stupid questions, like where is the milk? It’s in the fridge! Do you want to die? And please pick up your f*cking socks! I’m not your maid. Would you like me to shove them down your throat? ( This is directed at the Big Guy, not the children. I pick up their socks, with no threat of choking them out, on the regular.)
  • Don’t look at me sideways, it will surely not bode well for you. I know you will be tempted to test this theory, but just be aware that during shark week, better men have died for less.
  • Don’t comment on how tight my jeans are or the extra head-sized pimple that has sprouted on my forehead. I can see it. I’m menstruating, not blind and I am hyper aware of every single flaw this week.
  • Don’t expect me to try on clothes, especially a bathing suit for a vacation. Don’t even ask. You will be wasting your time and is your life worth it?

Shark Week, is that eye roll worth dying over?

  • Don’t take my measurements for any reason under the sun. Seriously, Mr. Personal Trainer, I know you are a man and don’t understand but I don’t need to know how many inches the water retention is adding to my body. My jeans are cutting me in half; believe me, I’m already aware.
  • Don’t be my Mother or Mother-in-law, anything you do while I am on shark week will leave me exasperated and annoyed, usually taken as passive aggression and held against you for the week. I would recommend marking your calendars and not calling me or making eye contact at all that week.This is more for your benefit than my sanity. I promise.
  • Don’t ask me to step on the scale, this is pretty much any day of the month but it could have dire consequences for you during this week.
  • Don’t raise your voice at me, not even moderately. You can try it. But I’m pretty sure that I will have snatched the snark right out of your mouth before you get to the second word. But, hey, it’s your life.
  • Don’t touch my boobs or ask for any kind of “service” for you. I’m dying over here. Why should you be having a good time?
  • Which reminds me, little one, please don’t ask Mommy for a baby brother on this week. It truly is the furthest thing from my mind. Birth is pain and I’m in enough right now with the troll squishing my ovaries, my sore boobs and cramps. Ask me in a couple weeks, when the water weight is gone and I‘m feeling frisky (this tends to happen during ovulation week. See, conspiracy I tell you!)
  • And under no circumstances, ever ask me if I’ve got PMS? Just observe and know it, that’s enough to save your life. I don’t need your commentary. I know I’m on shark week. I don’t need to know that you know and think I’m being a hormonal bitch I already know that.
  • Your best bet for surviving Shark week is to stay still, be quiet and hope that I don’t see you. In 3-5 days I will be back to my sweet self but for the next few days, stay out of the water.

What is your best tip for surviving shark week in your home? Has anyone ever been seriously maimed during that week? What was there crime? Can’t wait to hear your stories in the comments, Misery enjoys company…especially this week. Oh and for an extra dose of The TRUTH I am guest posting at Blogging Dangerously Where sex in the city meets married with children today. If you are not already familiar with Blogging Dangerously, go now and check it out. Kit is an amazingly funny and quick witted writer and I’m sure that you will love her as much as I do. Also, she is the creator of #wineparty on Twitter every Friday night. What’s not to love?

*Disclaimer; I did not coin the term Shark Week.I can’t remember who the brilliant soul on Twitter was who did, but I have made it my own. That week of the month will forever be known as Shark week in my household. When my daughters begin menstruating, I will pass it down. Shark week is now my legacy:)

P.S. No husbands, children, Mothers or Mother-in -laws were harmed in the making of this Shark week post.

Happy Shark Week, Hope we all make it out alive

 

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I want to thank you all for entering to win the Diva Cup.It really is an awesome menstrual cup. You all had so many great green tips and I will certainly be using a great deal of them. Thank you for sharing your tips and for going the distance and making the world a better and greener place for our children.

Announcing the Divalicious Winner of the Diva Cup

The Winner is Comment #5 Laura.

My best green tip is to eliminate paper towels. I bought a few bulk packages of wash cloths that we keep in a kitchen drawer.I also bought a bulk package of cloth napkins. I keep them all in a little white plastic trash can in the laundry room and wash them when it fills up.So easy and far less wasteful than the three rolls of paper towels  we used each week.

The Diva Cup~Naturally Divalicious, menstrual cup, women, tampons, model 1, model 2, pads, stem,reusable, leaks

I have also chosen to share a few of the tips that you all shared, so that we can all benefit from the ideas.

A bottle is eucalyptus essential oil in the bathroom can save some embarrassment, just add a few drops to your toilet bowl before doing anything odorous! If you are adventuresome you can mix other oils with the eucalyptus such as peppermint for an even nicer fragrance that doesn’t come from a chemical based spray.  ~Aurora

My best green tip is to think about the impact of anything you bring into your house — what kinds of resources it took to make and transport, and what impact it will have when you dispose of it. It makes me a lot more selective about how and what I consume! ~ Jennifer

My green tip (s)… cloth diapers! So easy and much better for baby and the environment. Walk or bike instead of driving. Baking Soda and Vinegar are all you need for cleaning supplies. Buy food from local farms or markets when you can. ~Kim

Green Tip: Minimize your household waste by: (1) Buying items with minimal packaging (larger containers or bulk goods) where possible; (2) Recycling as much as possible; (3) Donating or “handing-down” what you can; (4) Composting non-meat/oil food and garden waste–if you have a place where aromas won’t bother neighbors; and (5) Compacting your waste before placing in garbage can. ~Catherine

one of my green tips is using small rags/cloths as TP for pee!  i have *substantially* reduced our toilet paper consumption in our home by doing this.  i have a stainless steel container by my toilet and toss them in then wash and repeat!  i have pinking shears and used them to cut up small squares of an old pair of flannel pj pants. ~Cori

Congratulations to the Divalicious Winner of the Diva Cup

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PMS~ There is Premenstrual Syndrome, more aptly called the one week a month that I hate all living creatures for even having the gall to breathe, little lone have the audacity to speak to me or ask me for anything at all.But then there is the ever so lovely, PMS and having the responsibility of mothering. Are you effing kidding me? Who ever thought this was a good idea? Come on, it is not an understatement to say it is potentially as deadly a mix as pills and booze.

My dearly beloved husband has departed (no he’s not dead…yet) to the great state of Virginia, for business leaving me, with my last shreds of sanity, alone with my two beautiful girls.

ALONE with PMS!

I have been trying my best to keep them occupied, so they don’t feel the void of their father’s presence as much as they might, say sitting around the house doing nothing. We have been running to and fro, engaging in every last activity I can come up with. This is being done for a dual purpose; 1) to keep my daughters’ completely preoccupied with other activities so they are not missing daddy too much ( and constantly whining about it, as they have so boldly demonstrated they are quite capable of doing) and 2)to keep my house in spic and span condition on the rare chance that there is someone in this world who is actually looking to buy an awesome house in a great subdivision in this awful economy. This has been my life since my husband has made his departure. And if I may say so, myself, I have been doing a damn good job at both, though tiring and nerve racking as it has been.

PMS you Sneaky Bitch! I’m busy! Go away!

Then, from out of nowhere, since I myself have been so preoccupied with all of these activities and have forgotten the beast from within that never misses her visit, she arrives and she is taking no prisoners. I have been ripping heads off of cable companies, phone companies, and even the occasional bystander for 2 days now.I had the good sense of self awareness to realize what was happening, while I was visiting my parents and my 4 year old, who has decided she can’t hear anymore, had a sleep deprived melt down and wanted to leave my mothers house…at bedtime. Yes, at bedtime! This happened after, the previous night, her 2 year old sister had decided that she wasn’t caring for sleeping (all three of us) in Grandma’s full sized bed and proceeded to punish me by screaming ,sporadically, without cause, at the top of her lungs… all night long. Yes, ladies, all night long. Remember those nights with a newborn, when you were so sleep deprived that you prayed for death, just so that you could sleep? This was way worse. Anyways, back to the meltdown, so rather than calm her down, soothing her, and coaxing her to lay down at Grandma’s like I normally would have done. I said, “OK, go potty!” and I proceeded to chuck every bit of crap we brought into the back of my SUV..with the speed of lightening and the fury of the a goat on crack. My parents watched silently and my children, being that they are apparently aware that Mommy gets a little crazy once a month, were unaffected. They simply said their good byes to the grandparents and ignored my mood completely.

Driving home, completely besot with myself, and completely over my kids meltdown, it hit me…” You crazy bitch, calm down. It’s PMS week” We, Ella, Abbi and myself (Sybil for the week) made it home without any real incident. That night, as I put them in bed and looked at their sweet little faces, I thought to myself, do these kids know how truly dangerous their Mama’s PMS really is? Luckily not. Normally, my husband is here to offset the true glory that is my PMS but with him gone, I was left to deal with it all on my own and it was not pretty. I spoke with my husband and let him know that I am having my beast visit this week. He is coming home, after two weeks of being gone, his response to me was ,”Oh God. Can it be over by the time I get there?” Luckily for him, I was not in the throes of the syndrome or that could of warranted him a tongue lashing to not soon be forgotten, at the very least. I have come to the conclusion through this ordeal that it should be a law of nature that once you have children you no longer can experience the “syndrome.” It truly is quite counter productive and very much as reckless and deadly as “Pills and booze”.Of course, if pills and booze were involved I believe I would be much more likable this week anyways. But alas, as does mothering and PMS not mix neither does mothering and pills or booze. As all good mothers do, I will suck it up and put on a happy face. My girls are awesome blessings and as long as I can keep that in perspective maybe I can keep the beast at bay, at least until my husband gets home:)

PMS, You may have Won the Battle but Not the War!

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