It hurts to love you | Your menses & embracing it’s beauty

Uterus LoveI used to hate Her

I used to hate my period – and my uterus specifically for the painful periods I’ve experienced most of my ovulating life.

Griping pain that left me rendered to the bed on days that should have been productive.

Horrid PMS: crazy mood swings and chocolate cravings that lead to weight gain and skin eruptions.

It’s been a monthly nightmare that lead to actual anxiety about my monthly!

Until I changed my lifestyle AND my mind by learning to appreciate the beauty of my reproductive organs and my monthly cycle.

During your development as an embryo becoming a fetus, you were graced with what God gave you to reproduce with – your sexual organs.

Testicles, prostate and a penis if you were going to be a boy, and a uterus, ovaries and vagina if you were to be a girl.

For many of us ladies, around 13 or 14 (sometimes younger, sometimes older) got our first period.

We were women now.

And very soon we learned what exactly came with stomach aches and bleeding every month.

Nobody bothered to tell me that sometimes you can actually lose your mind and lose touch with reality.

I kid of course, for most of us it doesn’t go that far, but it can feel that way at least.  Right?

Just me?  Eh, okay then.

I digress…

For various reasons, (age, life experiences, lifestyle choices, hormonal shifts, diet or heredity) we can have certain issues with our female parts.

Some of those issues can vary:

  • Fibroids which can lead to excruciating menstrual pain for some sufferers.
  • Ovarian Cysts which to a certain degree are fairly normal but can become problematic.
  • Endometriosis causes painful menstruation in women who suffer with this condition.
  • Various Venereal Diseases which definitely depend on your lifestyle choices – so we won’t get into those here.
  • Yeast Infections are quite common after all (up to 75% of all women have had one) and simply part of being a woman at this point.  But did you know that recurring yeast infections are not common and are a problem ( only 5% of women suffer) and most women should only get maybe a couple in their lifetime?  Did you also know that recurrent yeast infection could be linked to your diet?  Yup.  The more you know.

But that’s just the troublesome side of things – let’s shed some light on the more positive and productive side of things, shall we?

Before you can complain about the cramps and bloating you’ve got to ask yourself, “How well have I been treating my body?”

If it hasn’t been very well, then maybe we change change a few things around and today start with our uterus.

I know she makes it hard with all the bloating and cramps every month, but what if I told you that if you treat her nice, she’ll treat you nicer?

There are so many women with ‘issues’ like the ones listed above and others I didn’t list.

If your only issue is hating your period, then count yourself lucky – that’s number one.

Now that we’re over that, let’s start the loving.

You can limit your monthly symptoms very easily every month by doing the following:

  • Learning about your body – you can’t help yourself until you truly know yourself.  Figure out how certain things affect your body during this time of the month so you can tweak things to find your own personal balance.  By ‘things’  I mean water intake, alcohol, foods, etc.
  • Tracking your menses – if you can figure out when you ovulate, you can easily track your periods.  I can feel my ovaries when I ovulate – weird but I can.  Otherwise they have ovulation tracking kits at every store and on every baby website nowadays.
  • Adjusting your diet – even though you crave the chocolate, eating it may worsen your PMS symptoms because you’re actually in need of magnesium.
  • Doing mini ‘Menstrual Cleanses’ to get your body prepared for the changes your about to be going through during your menses.  Let’s face it – it’s hard work!
  • Doing a little more cardio – and you know this!

Diet and Exercise

there are many yogic moves (esp. hip openers) that help ease uterine pain from your menses.

there are many yogic moves (esp. hip openers) that help ease uterine pain from your menses.

First off, as with anything in your body, if you treat it well, it will treat you well.  The same goes for your uterus ladies!

By adhering to a healthy diet and fitness program, your body will find it easier to operate.

You will begin to notice that your monthly cravings for chocolate and/or chips will subside and your energy levels will barely fluctuate.

Even extremes in mood are reduced.

Also, by eliminating or even reducing the amount of meat and animal products around the time of your (pre)menses, you can reduce the severity of your menstrual cramps!

Sanitary Napkins or Tampons?

Ultimately, the decision on what to use to handle your monthly flow is yours, but I am a firm believer in making informed decisions so – let me inform you.

  • Tampons – Tampons are clean, convenient and you felt like a real woman when you started using them, right?  Just me again?  Okay then.  Although they are so efficient (most times) at their job, there are health concerns floating around out there as well.   For one, it plugs you up and blocks the downward flow of energy that occurs during your menses.  You have to let it flow baby!  You will cramp worse if you don’t.  By now many of you have heard of dioxin and the health concerns it poses, especially to women because of the products we use during menstruation.  It’s found in sanitary napkins and more alarming it’s found in tampons. More information can be found here.
  • Sanitary Napkins – The old reliable.  The pad.  Thick, bunchy, hot and uncomfortable.  A constant physical reminder that you my friend are on your period!  Although a safer alternative than tampons, commercial sanitary napkins, or pads pose their own risks as well. But if I felt the two were my only option, I’d definitely choose pads.  Why you ask?  Because there are options available like cloth menstrual pads!
  • Mentrual Cups – What the hell is this pray tell?  Menstrual cups are cups typically made of medical grade silicon that can be inserted into the vagina and worn up to 12 hours at a time.  Afterwards, it is removed, emptied, washed and reinserted.  They are apparently expert at preventing leaks because of a natural seal if forms with your body.  There are several brands to look for and I will list them below.  Out of all of the methods mentioned above, menstrual cups are by far the safest, most cost efficient, environmentally sound and cleanest methods available.  I made the switch myself about 3 years ago and never looked back!

 

divacup

Menstrual Cup Brands:

 

 

 

pad

Cloth Menstrual Pad Makers:

 


 

What about the cramps?

Now that you have a little better understanding of your period and how it works, how to deal with the ‘flow’ part, and how to eat and exercise for it – what about relieving those darn cramps?

monthlytea1

Well, if you would have subscribed to my blog dear, you would have caught this post detailing a kick ass recipe for naturally relieving menstrual cramps as well as some info on uterine massages – yes they work.

You’re welcome.

Basically, appreciate your body’s functions.

Your period is a monthly natural phenomena – if you were to fertilize that egg, you’d be having a baby in 9 more months!

It’s necessary for life to begin – each month your body is preparing the stage for new life.

That in and of itself is such a beautiful thing.

All in all it boils down to understanding, respecting and loving your body – during every part of the month.

If you’re good to your uterus ladies, she will in turn be good to you.

It’s give and take.

Be easy

 

 

*FYI The FDA has issue a ‘Patient Alert’ on the reported chemicals and their uses in tampons and sanitary napkins.  The patient alert can be found here.