Woh Paanch Din

Woh Paanch Din

"Aaye toh bhi pareshan ,
aur na aaye toh kabhi khushi kabhi tension,
Un dino chahiye pyaar aur attention,
Nahi toh face the anger and aggression."

We all remember our experiences with our first period. I was in 6th std and it was a busy morning when I was getting ready for my school. My younger sister and I were waiting for the rickshaw at the gate when I had a sudden urge to pee. I asked her to wait and rushed to the toilet only to find the toilet bowl red in colour. I screamed so loudly that my sister and mom came running towards the bathroom. Even the milkman who had come to deliver the milk waited at the entrance to check if everything was ok. It was the mom who stood near the bathroom door and made my sister stay out, who was trying to peep and asking mom to let her see what had happened to me. Mom told her I got hurt and would take the day off and asked her to go to school. 

I kept crying and howling like a crazy girl. She came back with a cotton cloth and taught me how to use it. My dad who came back from his morning walk was given the news. He looked at me and gave a polite smile. I was so shy and confused. Though mom had educated me after the first signs shown on my body, I was just not ready to accept it. I was made aware not to mingle much with boys and that I was a woman now and if married could have babies. 

I had always thought hugging the opposite partner produced babies. Don’t play or enter the puja room during the first 4 days left me with confusion and frustrations so much so that I hated being a girl and cried every period. It affected me so much that I started walking with stooped shoulders to hide my breasts.

As a newlywed, I once got my periods much sooner than expected one night and asked my husband to get pads for me and when he went out my Sasu maa asked me where I had sent him at that hour. She was so furious that I asked her son to get the pads. I didn’t know how to react and had tears in my eyes. 

Now after almost 25 years since my first periods, the experiences have been mixed. The mood swings, the tears, unpleasant feelings, and misunderstandings can be pretty irritating. I have always had heavy and painful periods and was told that it happens. 

It was during my delivery that I came to know I had small fibroids and that they were normal. As time passed, the fibroids grew, and I was suggested to get the uterus removed. But I didn’t want to remove a part of my body and searched for better alternatives and went through UFE to shrink the fibroids. Now I am in a better position to deal.

Few things we could incorporate to have bearable periods are,

  • try to have veggies, fruits and lots of water. 
  • Indulging in your favourite food like chocolates and ice creams can give you immense satisfaction. 
  • Chanting my favourite god’s name helps me calm my nerves. 
  • Listening to music and taking enough rest and sleep help. 
  • Also stretching with few yoga poses relaxes the body.
  • This is the time for self-care and pampering yourself.

Periods should not stop us from doing things we love. Yes, some of us go through difficult days and sometimes we tend to ignore the signs which require medical attention. I wish I had taken things more seriously and not waited till my hemoglobin level reached 8.

My daughter recently got her periods and when I see her openly discussing matters related to this with her dad, it leaves me speechless. In spite of telling her not to be so frank with him, she says he’s her dad and she doesn’t mind sharing things with him. Even her dad makes her feel comfortable during the days and they also speak about the pain and bleeding. Times are changing.

Below are a few sketches that most of the women experience. Would love to hear about your first experience with periods.