Alice in Menstruation Land

I woke up with a great smile. My summer vacation was going on. I was at my maternal uncle’s place playing in front of the mirror. Suddenly my shorts were with red. What the hell was happening to me? I ran towards my mom and told her. She directly pushed me in the bathroom and I had to bathe again. She told me that this will happen every month now. So from now on in these 4 days no jumping or outside sports, not allowed to touch Pujaghar.

September 2008:

My periods were missed I was so happy I can enjoy Ganpati festival. But my mom was worried she was planning to visit a doctor to treat this issue. Why? That impure blood was not forming in the body that is not good news? Why I should take medicines to have menstruation if that blood is impure? Yes, my science teacher will definitely help me to know about this. We have that chapter in next sem. I’m eagerly waiting.

January 2009:

Finally tomorrow that science topic will start. Everyone is excited in my class even boys (Why they should know about this?). What???? That topic is for self study? Questions will not be asked on that topic. Then why that topic is in that Science textbook if it is not for teaching?

December 2014

We are having sexuality education workshop at our department. Thank God, I’m in girls college (First time I’m happy that I’m learning with only girls). Ohh… He is the resource person? I’m not gonna ask anything, I will only listen.

Wow, it was really nice workshop. So, the blood is not impure and menstruation is just part of my life as I should have regular menstrual cycle to keep my body healthy and to give birth to my own kids (We have technologies developed though but they are expensive, right?) Thanks to my teacher who later explained why she invited a male sexologist to talk on sexuality education, she wanted to expand our vision to have open discussion about menstruation and sexuality education.

August 2015

Again we are having Sexuality education workshop, this time there is a little difference. I’m in class of 60 students seated in a semi-circle one girl and one boy in my Master’s course. I’m not nervous this time but I can see confused and nervous classmates (excluding few) about the workshop. Then at the end of the day, everyone were empathetic about each other as we know what happened in our body when we were teens. So for the next two years, every girl in my class was able to tell confidently that she is feeling dull or irritated today because she is having periods.

June 2019:

A school has organized program for 9th standard, topic: changes during adolescence.

Girls and boys had separate sessions. Girls have asked the same questions which Alice had in her mind since 2006 to 2014. But the difference was today, Alice (Yes I) was answering those questions and having a relief that at least Alices (they were 50) who were sitting in front of her will have better journey in menstruation land than her. Ohh… and boys were happy after talking to Alice because someone came and talked with them about their adolescence and of course now they are aware that those 4 days in a month in women’s life are painful or irritating but those pain or irritation can be reduced by helping them and comforting them not by keeping them away from festivals or Pujaghar.

By Shivani Remje

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