Ten years old, fifth grade. You learn soon you will bleed out of your vagina, once a month, every month, for years. It will be painful. Your muscles will paralyze you as they violently squeezing the blood from your uterus. Your hormones will make you angry, depressed, irrational, crazy. You will crave every food you have ever tasted. You cannot talk about it in public settings or to men because it is gross. This natural cycle that will start soon is repulsive. No one wants to hear about it. People will stare at you when you go to the store to buy pads and tampons. No one will have sex with you when you menstruate. You will not be able to tell others why you must use the bathroom immediately. If you bleed through your pants, people will laugh at you and think you are disgusting. You are foul, cursed, despicable, wretched. Gross.
To so many people, having a period is “gross.” The blood is “gross.” The hormones are “gross.” The smell is “gross.” Women have to sit back and pretend this natural cycle does not exist and does not affect their daily life because it is “gross.”
I am sick of hearing this. Why is it acceptable to call my bodily functions gross? I am not going to quiet about it, so here is a basic list as to why my period is beautiful:
- It ensures me that I am healthy. My body is doing what it needs to do to stay on track. It gets rid of the old to bring in the new.
- It reminds me that there is not a fetus growing in my uterus, and I do not have to worry about becoming a parent.
- It’s just blood. Just because it comes out of the vagina, it is not much different from the blood that comes from a cut on the arm.
- It means that if one day I want to have a child, I can. I have the ability to grow a human inside of me because I get a period every month.
- It happens to every person with functioning female anatomy. It is completely normal and not the slightest bit uncommon.
- It is something I am grateful to have. There are so many people who want to menstruate and cannot due to illness, early hysterectomies, or being transgender.
So please get over yourself. Having a period is amazing and should be celebrated. We are not “gross.” Our vaginas are not “gross.” Our periods are not “gross”. Every time someone calls a period disgusting, challenge them. Make them regret they ever thought it was anything less than miraculous. The menstrual cycle is my gift to the world. Do not call it gross.