Have a Happy Period

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I tore open the pink wrapper. Day three, I’d fallen back into the inevitable monthly pattern that every Woman has gone through. Rich, destitute, or middle class; we are all Women. Between Paris Hilton, Hilary Rodham Clinton, teenage prostitutes, and third world mothers working to support their families, there is a glaring equality. Every month, as the moon makes its cycle, we take part in our very own. Our periods.

In some cultures, Women in their cycles are treated with reverence and respect: as the goddesses they truly are. Alas, in our society, periods are more often treated as an embarrassment, a nuisance, or a punishment for growing up. Why is this? The media and companies seem to project the image that your period is a badge of honor, initiating you into the glorious, powerful stage called Womanhood. But yet, the effort is paper-thin.

The little square of waxed paper, covering the adhesive of my maxi pad, read, “Have a happy period.” I felt like bursting into derisive laughter. “Have a happy period.” It all sounded so shallow and fake; a line the latest Barbie would repeat in her peppy voice until her battery ran out. The rest of my evening was spent brainstorming for better adjectives. Powerful, enriching, meaningful, exhilarating, and joyous all seemed to be fitting substitutes. (Why, it could put a spin on pads. The market would flood with an influx of “fortune pads.” A new fad.

“Use your inner beauty to your advantage.”

“Take risks.”

“Tell him how you really feel.”

The opportunities are absolutely endless. When will they use them?) They seem to be trying so hard to make using a pad a good experience. After a few days, my trashcan starts to look more like an Easter basket; full of crumpled plastic wrappers in a variety of pastel colors.
Whether or not they realize it, the companies are sending a mixed message. Recently, walking down the aisle of CVS, I noticed a box of pads advertising a, “silent opening.” Thinking about it, I realize that this implied that you should conceal the embarrassment of your period; none should hear the sound of a crinkling pad wrapper. You should hide it and feel guilty about its existence; even among fellow Women. The process that makes room for new life should be hidden from view, never mentioned in conversation. Why, why, why?





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Tyler B. said...
Nov. 4, 2010 at 9:13 pm
thank you.
 
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