It wasn't the worst, but it wasn't the best either!
My first period was definitely not expected. I was fourteen and although I knew about periods and had started to have some discharge, I don’t remember having any period symptoms. It was a Monday and I was in an after school drama club when I went to the toilet and saw my stained underwear. I grabbed my bag and rushed home.
I would have loved for my first bleed to be more celebrated
Although my mum had already passed through menopause, she had kept a packet of pads at home ready for me to use (thanks, mom). It seemed to be a very “normal” thing and she didn't make a big deal of it at all. Looking back now, I believe that periods are a very beautiful, sacred process and I would have loved for my first bleed to be more celebrated. I know that if I ever have a daughter, I’d be sure to throw her a first period party.
For the next week or so I was going to school with a constant fear of leaking through my skirt. I would go to the toilet with a pad up my sleeve every hour or so to check whether the pad was leaking through and needed changing. I’m not quite sure where the shame and fear of my period came from but the need to be somewhat “discreet” comes to mind (I later learned this is one of the unwritten rules of ‘Menstrual Etiquette’. It was as if no one should know the real reason for my frequent bathroom visits. And that no one should see the pad under my sleeve or hear the sound of the packaging in the toilets.
I would love to see periods normalised even MORE. I hope that young teens and tweens in the near future don’t ever think twice about asking a period-related question or about sharing experiences. I’m passionate about breaking taboos surrounding menstruation which is why I created a special program called “pillow yoga for periods”.
Through this program, I hope that women, girls and all people with periods can find relief and talk about their physical and mental experiences during the week of their bleed.
If you’d like to learn more about Maja and her pillow yoga initiative click here : 5 Best Pillow Poses for Periods!
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