Saturday, July 25, 2009

on my koolaid

Red Flag
Judy Chicago, 1971
Judy Chicago donated this print to the Museum of Menstruation in 1998

"Sanitary napkins"..."hygeine pads"..."flower scented douche sprays" are they trying to tell us? Are our periods unsanitary? Is menses blood a kin to feces?

Let me be clear...
I do not think that I am a goddess simply because I bleed. I do not necessarily feel enlightened every time I am riding the crimson waves..
However, I do think that the concept of having a menstrual cycle is quite interesting and quite powerful.

Having a period does come with inconveniences.
Having to pay for pads or tampons. Sitting on my blood during the day, or pulling out what looks like a dead rat when it's time to change products.
Cramps..oh the cramps..
Having to constantly be aware of what position I'm sitting in, standing in and when it may be time to change another menstrual product discretely...we sure have come a long way from menstrual pad belts..


The Menstrual Blood Extractor..saw this on a website..don't know if it was ever manufactured but this is how it worked...the inventor instructed the woman to squeeze the "trigger", insert it into the vagina and then release the grip. It supposedly would suck out the blood and loose tissue from the uterus.

Now women use a variety of products including "The Keeper"

Yes, it is a hassle, but I love what my period represents. Am I always so excited about my period? No. But sometimes I really do see how there is this barely mentioned culture surrounding periods. Ever ask a complete stranger if she had a tampon you could use? Have any embarrassing period stories? Ever live with a bunch a women and realize that all your cycles have lined up together? (Just be glad we are not living in cultures where women were separated in huts to bleed together)

I think that period blood is beautiful, I think that the ability to give birth if we choose is amazing, and I think that it takes a certain kind of grace to deal with a monthly cycle.
I do not worship my period...but I certainly give it and GOD my respect..

1995 by Mayra Alpizar

"10 Tablespoons a Month"
Quiara Z. Escobar

P.S. Ok, fellas I can't speak for each of you. I've met men who really don't mind the idea of a woman's period, men who cringe at the thought, men who roll their eyes, men who make sexist jokes...
It's part of life...I hope ya'll can give it a certain level of understanding..

(All Images from the Museum of Menstruation and Women's Health -

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