Firstly, this feels totally taboo so I would like to thank the following:that cool advertisement with like totally cool war-music, all the spoken words on periods, Rupi Kaur, even bleed marathons…Thanks for the courage.
I will start by proclaiming my unconditional love for tampons. Like ever since I came across tampons my life has never been the same, from minimal sight of blood to like no funny masounds when am walking (does this only happen to people without thigh gaps ama we are both equal on this?) to the portability (tampons are so conveniently discreet) to no fear of the pad outlining itself when you decide to go for the body-hugging clothes to not feeling thaaat bad when I flush tampons in those few washrooms that misbehave by not providing sanitary disposable bins…
Pause: those washrooms that do not have disposable bins thouuu! So now? You want me to carry blood around in my bag? like honestly? like not!*Construction sites ahem*
…to the most important one: swimming or running on any and every single day of the month because Serena Williams is goals. Forget that usually it isn’t the type of sanitary dressing that’s the barrier, there is pain and err couch-potatoness. Oh my goodness, speaking of pain I just remembered there is this friend acquaintance of mine who told me that her menstrual pains stopped when she told God that she is not under the curse of Eve, I have been telling God that even me I refuse to be under the curse of Eve and alas! they have been reducing too. Although, God (through google and testimonies) also added that I should exercise more, drink more water and yes, eat more chocolate!
Okay, unnecessary hyperlinking, this is the point, tampons are up on the list of things that are unconditionally bae. In fact as I watched ‘The Walking Dead’ and imagined it happening for real, I was the team member making the dangerous trips to super markets and taking as much sanitary dressings as possible then remembered menstrual cups would probably be more handy… That was the last hyperlink, promise.
The only time the love turns conditional is when I read those articles of how sijui there are chemicals and TSS and am just like why do people hate vaginas this much, like really? “whar did werrr do?”*she said in vagina voice* Those are the days `I get all serious about finding menstrual cups and sponges and those magic panties that buzzfeed was advertising etc etc yeah okay not yeah, why are those that are good for the environment and better for my body so hard to find? Totally not fair! while we are on this, them not having their ingredients thingy on the packets also pisses me off.Okay that is when I don’t love them very much.
I guess that is why the following conversations usually come as a surprise…
Him: You use tampons?
Me: Yeah, totally
Him: Aren’t you like afraid of losing your virginity…
Me: hmm? *narrates story of how she started using tampons (involves a strict swimming instructor who did not care what reason you missed practice for)* Really just trying to say I did not have a choice but for tampons and then I fell in love with them…
She: *whispering*(because we always whisper) do you have pads?
Me: Nope, but I have tampons! You want?
She: But those things are not good they make you lose your virginity.
Other shes : Yeah, they do…
*Math teacher walks in and we take the chat to the Math notebook*
Me: You want me to be worried about a piece of cotton taking away my virginity?
She: Not like that but we were told that it breaks your hymen.
Me: I think many other things can break the hymen like exercise and things…
She: No, we have this ceremony in umhlanga where the women check for your hymen as a way of ensuring your virginity and you get a certificate.
Later on we had more conversations about tampons and virginity and it got me thinking about a lot of things… Of the things we do to control her sexuality from cutting off the clitoris to cutting off her clitoris and her labia then sewing it all up to choosing her wardrobe for her to shaming her to giving her certificates for ensuring the hymen is in place to purity rings to removing her brain, she! The devil is a liar!.… *sigh* Same wolves just different types of sheep clothing.Now, personally I am all about the waiting for marriage business but I am also all for someone else having the right to choose all the other options that are there. Anyway kuna venue me am kinda happy I don’t have a hymen because then it will be my word against his…tihihihi! Plus if that means minimal blood, yes please! Okay, this week I need to get serious about getting a gynaecologist and getting clarifications for all this my assumptions/ peer tales…Like “Heyya gynaecologist is there going to be blood that spreads all over the white sheet and is hung for all to see? ” This one is totally stolen from a Nigerian movie from my old days or one of those Mills and Boons, also from my young days, hehe! (like am busy reading criminal cases and thought pieces on Black Consciousness…well until Mama Chimamanda combines them both and am just like, heaven a place on earth!).
I think I am nearing the end, this post was just all about me getting over the fear of talking about periods and tampons and saying that am not worried about losing my virginity to cotton (and the ingredients they refuse to right on the damn packets) to reflecting on the many ways my sexuality is policed…If you are in a position to change any of my concerns, please do. Like, it would be nice to know what else apart from cotton wool goes into my vagina every month and it would also be really nice if the slut-shaming/sexuality-policing reduced and those other options being readily available will be kind of cool too. In other news, Chebet remind yourself to go to the gynae (or has Shonda made an episode about this on Grey’s Anatomy yet? am still in Season 2 #TheStruggleofBalance) and deconstruct the hymen once and for all like Laci Green and google have been pretty helpful and all but with all the hymen restoration talk going on am starting to think that despite my cynicism and all that maybe it is an important thing to have or to have lost after all…yeah…Am out.