Monday, November 21, 2011

27 Days Later

That's all I fucking need, I think furiously. I check my planner: 27 days. Lately the intervals have gotten a few days shorter, hovering around the textbook 28, but flow duration is still longer than average. I've had 17 days off.

Looking at my planner, I remember what I thought last month, and the month before, and the month before that: That's all I fucking need. I think back over the past decade. Ten years – that's approaching half my life – I've been putting up with this monthly exodus of dark matter, and not once have I been able to feel anything remotely positive about it.

Every month: That's all I fucking need.

Fifteen years old, in the bathroom, crying and cursing my body for its monthly betrayal, uncontrollable, infuriating, pointless. Twenty-one years old, in the bedroom, being upbraided by my girlfriend for my squeamishness about bodily fluids. All the years in between, growing into feminism, learning to deconstruct my internalized misogyny, reading Steinem, finding out that many women see this as something empowering, something beautiful, something to celebrate.

I don't find it empowering.

I don't find it beautiful.

I don't want to celebrate it.

I'm utterly sick of trying not to hate it. I'm sick of trying to locate some essential femininity in it. Sick of trying to see it as emblematic of the life-giving facility of the female body. Sick of trying to view that same facility as a source of power rather than a source of visceral horror, something I would gladly relinquish given half a chance.

I hate it, this thing my body does. I want to be rid of it.


  1. If you want some sympathy...

    Mine is irregular due to regular medication I take for an unrelated condition. I don't even keep a planner because sometimes it's "Didn't I just have this two weeks ago?" Mine's heavy, too - looks like someone slaughtered a pig in the bathroom, and I feel faint and stuff. I actually wonder if I have a problem.

    In my idea of the perfect body - it's probably the first thing to go.

  2. Yes, yes yes yesyesYES.

    That is exactly how it is. I hate it. I do not want to see some essential part of me-ness in it (realizing that I am genderqueer actually helped out; now I recognize the "this body is wrong" as what it is and can handle it a little better.) I do not want to put up with this a third of my life. (10ish on, 20ish off.)

    I wish it were gone.
    I don't know how to get rid of it, though.

  3. The drug companies will be happy to sell you a solution. Haven't you seen the commercials?

  4. I am so with you. I was mercifully blessed (?) with amennorhea for a good bit of my twenties and now I give in to the drug companies and tri-cycle to keep from dealing with it more than quarterly. It makes me sick, keeps me from running as well or as fast as normal & is a major pain. Those days I lose productivity spending half my day in the bathroom, and I get migraines to boot. There is nothing to celebrate about menstruation in my opinion. Don't beat yourself up. We don't all have to be earth mothery about it.