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Friday, 3 September 2010

WOMBan Talk: Period Cups & The Moon Inside Of You

If this is a delicate subject for you or if you run out screaming eeeeeeeeeeew over topics related to intimitate body functions, stop reading now!

---another warning: long post ahead---

This subject is about getting to really *know* your own female body and my experiences. This is something that I am working on now... learning to appreciate/re-love my body (for all its weird and wonderful bits)... on a creative and physical sense... from learning new active things, challenging  it, being as healthy as I can - to - trying out a period cup and getting re-familiar with my monthly cycle etc. I am being very open to new things! And as part of being a womban is experiencing our monthly cycles (physical, emotional, spiritual etc), this is a always good place to start.

My way of thinking: It's my body, it's my responsibility to keep it going as best as I can until I RIP lol. The body is also a tool that can empower us as womben if we really appreciate how our body works and how it can express who we are.

For reflection: Coming back to the womban's cycle issue, questions to you ladies who are still with me reading (I hope I haven't put most of you off already, we just got started!): From a young age, has your monthly cycle been a negative experience? Have you subconsciously been told from a young age that your monthly cycle as woman is a nasty/negative part of our body? How has your attitude towards your monthly cycle affected you over the years? Has it changed?

I love this documentary film called "The Moon Inside Of You" ... all the mixed signs that this subject brings up! It just highlights some issues...

I have been slowly changing my attitude towards this part of being a female over the years... Yes, it used to be filtered through to me from a young age that this is not talked about openly, it is negative, it is gross etc - mainly though society's attitude to it. Not a very good way to start learning what being a womban is in your teens. 

Then I started exploring it in a more positive light - Queen Afua and other amazing womben opened my eyes to it being a much more holistic and empowering experience. I try to use this time to do fasts, meditate, explore my emotions and if I am feel cranky, it seems to always lead me (through my emotional signs) to explore topics or areas in my life that I need to work on. It's a sacred time for reflection work!

More recently, over the last 5 years or so I have been also hearing about the Divacup through hair care and health forums. At first, it did make me very uncomfortable... just looking at it made me wonder how the H would I ever feel comfy with that thing stuck up me all day! But, thinking about all the negative things (and harsh chemicals!) connected to tampons and pads has now pushed me to give this chemical-free option a go!

I finally took the step and bought my period cup now... There are many versions on the market - as mentioned, most of the links I came across were for the Divacup (US based) but in the UK, they have the Mooncup too, which is more or less the same. This video is great and goes into it more, with a little added fun...
My experiences using my Mooncup:

Honestly, I was scared at first - this was a new fiddly thing to try - but then I remembered other things about my body that were scary, new and/or fiddly at first but then turned out to be very worthwhile exploring... Hmmmm, contact lenses, locing, waxing, detoxing... um sex lol. All pretty much a journey of learning that I still enjoy!

I bought mine a few days before monthly-auntie-flow was in town, so by the time it came through the post, I was at the beginning of my first test! And after my first 24 hours, I LOVED IT!

They do say use it for at least 3 monthly times before making your mind up, but I knew after the first 24 hours. As every womban is different physically, I think it's all about getting to see what works for you. It has been many years since using tampons, yet it actually felt quite comfortable after it was in. Wasn't expecting that!

I often find that if I am having a stress-full month, my time of the month can be hell-ish... Stress= cramps, emotional swings and no energy at that time of the month. And when I have a stress-free month, I am almost surprised when my period shows up as there is no sign of any of these lol! So, this month had been stressy-STRESSY and I actualy was expecting cramps... however, this even felt like it was relieving it... odd huh?!?

Leaks... the first couple of times in the first 2 days I did get them. Then, it was super easy to use. I even cut the stem off completely for more comfort. 2 Thumbs up for this product.

The bottom-line (for me), is that I am trying live and use as much natural products as possible... and this option has worked for me very well so far! 

OK, so it may not be for every womban... but in my opinion, it's worth a try before ruling it out... Just wanted to spread the word!

So, which brand should I buy? A great video for comparing...


IMANI cupid daughter of the people love assata.... said...

Yes sis menstrual empowerment is fundamental to women's empowerment! Menstrual blood is the most important blood there is...its the blood fueling the continuum of human life....I have posts on menses on my blog, congrats on honoring your menses

IMANI cupid daughter of the people love assata.... said...

darayinka (still French...) said...

I'm using a menstrual cup for 4 years now and I'm still "excited" to get my period so I can use it. I know it seems bizarre but that's my reality. My mum did a good job learning me about the period and when I knew about the cup, it was just an evidence. You feel so free!

I'm glad you felt that good with your cup.

Justine said...

I'm so glad I stumbled upon your site (via Google) I have never heard of a menstrual cup before. Come to think of it, it does make sense. The cup catches the flow...I'm just worrying; what if my cup runneth over? Lol. I mean really! Anywhoo, I would like to give it a try, but I'm still a virgin. Wouldn't that be difficult, to impossible?

musicmadstar said...

My feelings of my period has definitely gone full circle. When we had (simple) sex ed in primary school, I looked forward to getting my period, seeing it as a step forward to the "womanhood" direction. I remember carrying pads around in hope that I would start soon! I started quite young actually, I was 10 going on 11, about to start secondary school... I was estatic of course. Until my period pain started a year later... I was in absolute agony and regular tablets were not working. Ended up having to get prescribed drugs from the GP.. I'm very grateful that I'm fairly regular, so I can get my tablets ready in advance.

I'm usually very moody during my cycle, especially on the first day, and one day I was complaining to my friend about how much I hated my period and wishing I didn't have it etc. She simply said that I should be thankful as it was nature's way of telling me that everything was working OK so far! That made me think more about how society views menstration so I researched more about the good elements of the menstrual cycle and, even though I'm not exactly thrilled when it starts, I'm well on my way menstrual empowerment!

Holistic Locs said...

Wow, thank you ladies for your comments and sharing - very inspired!

@ Justine:
an a virgin use The Moon Cup or The KEEPER menstrual cup? Yes, it would be much like a tampon. If you have strong personal feeling about keeping the hymen "intact" you may not want to use a menstrual cup. (from )

Justine said...

I know I'm a little late in response, but nonetheless, I thank you Holistic Locs.

misslycia said...

Thanks for this. Every since I heard about these cups, years ago, I have been contemplating using them, I haven't yet had the courage to take the plunge though. I appreciate you being so candid and thorough about your experience using it. It gives the rest of us courage, lol.

You are right. For those of us who have committed to living a natural life, it only makes sense to extend this same philosophy to our natural monthly cycles.

Kristina said...

The Menstral liberating...I love them. I have two and have been using them for about 6 months now. There are just so great and empowering!!!
I too look forward to that time every month for the freedom in that time.