We woke up today.
Sitting between our Red Sea's great divide
Blood all around us-
no part of us remains dry.
Our bed is soaked, our underwear stained-
everything on us and around us needs to be changed.
The leaky flow of blood pooling will, for now, remain because
our cramps remind us that
We are in P A I N.
Pulsating, Aggravating, Intense, and Never-ending.
Cramps radiate hate from the minute we wake
until the second we go back to sleep.
If we're unlucky, cramps will shake us during our slumber and interpret our pain-free dreams-
We have to remember to take our Midol, ibuprofen, Advil, Tylenol and/or illegal drug of choice before bed
We will wake up in our own bloody streams teaming with our own bloody screams, moans, and murmurs of pain.
But I digress,
We have things to do today, We need to clean up our bloody mess.
(We don't have time for pain---)
f o u r Ibuprofen, a gulp of water, and a silent prayer to God pulls us out of our bloody bed.
The short walk to the bathroom takes forever but
We finally sit down on the toilet and let our bodies "do their thing."
Blood flows downward with gravity- mind goes over what things this day should (and should not) bring.
We all ask God to keep us from our period pains and bloodstained underwear for the remained of the day.
(We bleed through our panties anyway).
We strip our blood-soaked pads from our blood-soaked underwear.
We sigh and wonder "how much more blood can our bodies spare?"
We ease ourselves off the toilet and plop ourselves into the shower.
For now, our blood flow stops,
And all is okay- except, nothing is okay.
We cry, because nothing is okay.
Pain and a need for constant "sanitary" change is not okay- nor does it compare to
How unwell We feel.
Wells of emotion come springing forth,
Feelings come crashing down on us like angry waves.
We watch sadness, anxiousness, happiness, angriness, joyfulness, peacefulness, spitefulness, and full-on craziness rise before us. We are small and hopeless against the grand-slam of our emotions impact. Our feelings remind us we don't have control over our menstrual cycle-
We breakdown at the thought of doing this period thing again.
A month... or two weeks... or 49 days... or three months from now.
We never know when our dreadful, untimely, irregular period will come back;
But let's not think about this right now.
We have things to do, remember?
We don't feel like exiting the shower, but with a few more seconds of silent prayer, we convince ourselves that
Today is worth living.
We push our feelings just far enough away to stop our tears from falling,
We step out of the shower and,
Our bloody flow starts right back up again.
We choose to use a 25ml Diva Cup
And we pray it won't leak this time.
We look at the clock-
By this time every morning, for however long our period last,
We have waded through the Red Sea pooling between our legs,
We have crawled past the pain pushing up against us,
We have let our feelings fall from our eyes,
And we have decided to live a full life-
All before we've had a chance to eat breakfast,
or change our blood-soaked bed sheets
or clean our bloodstained panties.
We did so much work to pull ourselves together.
And, in exactly two hours,
We will need to fight pain,
sexual desires, unfriendly thoughts about our self-worth, nausea, flash-floods of surprise blood, headaches, back-aches, shoulder pains, fatigue, Depression, Anxiety, fear of people knowing we are bleeding, Dysmorphia, fear of where the day will take us, and doubt
All over again.
By this point, you, the reader, must be thinking,
"Why don't women with sucky periods just take birth control- isn't that what it's made for?"
Us women, with horrible periods (or lack of periods), all thought the same thing
At some point.
We all thought birth control was for people whose periods were irregular, irresponsible, and down-right irrationally painful.
But we know, after taking so, so many birth controls,
that they don't always help- and not all of our doctors always listen.
It's now 8:33 am and our two hours of hazy relief have vanished-
We are in the unisex bathroom stall at work, or at school
We are a mess of tears and blood and pain,
and we aimlessly try to pull ourselves together again
because we have things to do-
our period pains and emotional instability are effectively
tearing us apart-
We just want to stay un-bloodied and unbowed before our (wo)man-made Red Sea.
We don't want to be swallowed up by our period pains and bloody underwear.
We, you, me, and that girl who has tried every birth control, hormone therapy, herbal remedy, and counseling session-
We don't have control over our horrible period pains.
All we have are our bloody panties and our resolve.
We are strong despite it all.