Did your mom teach you about your menstrual cycle? When I was 10 years old, my mom took me on a special trip, just to the two of us. As we drove up north to spend the weekend together, she told me about how my body was and would be changing. Honestly, I don’t remember much of the details, but I do remember feeling like I could come to talk to her if I needed to.
After that trip, I don’t remember my mom telling me much about my cycle. She kept pads and tampons in the bathroom and that was about it. I remember telling her one time that I was noticing something white on my underwear and her telling me to ignore it.
I now recognize that what I was noticing was cervical mucus, one of the key signs a woman can use to identify what phase of her menstrual cycle she is in and especially to identify when she is ovulating. My mom, just like so many women, didn’t know what that was so she ignored it. Most women don’t understand that there is more to their menstrual cycle than a monthly occurrence.
I want my daughter to understand her body
My daughter is three years old, but already she asks me about her body. As a natural family planning educator, I want her to be well-versed in what her body is doing. I want her to love and appreciate her body, cervical mucus, and all. More importantly, I want her to understand more than I did as a young woman. No, I won’t do it when she is in preschool, but as she grows, I will make sure she realizes that her menstrual cycle is far more than her “period”.
Here’s a picture of me with my 3-year-old. Isn’t she adorable?
During women’s history month, I challenge you to not only reflect on our past but also ask yourself, how are you creating your own history right now?
What will you teach the women who will come after you? What are you telling your daughter or grandaughter about her menstrual cycle?
Reflecting on my past, I am so grateful my mom was willing to talk to me about my body at all. I am thankful she took individual time with me and showed me how much she cared.
I plan to carry forward the tradition of taking my own daughter on a “10-year-old trip” and teach her about the intricacies of her beautiful body.
As a natural family planning educator and pharmacist, I meet with women and couples for natural family instruction and women’s health consultations. I also teach and speak on natural family planning.