I chose to include these beautiful illustrations by Jiwoon Pak in this post. Somehow they seemed fitting.
I’m assuming that most of you who follow me are girls/women/female gender, therefore this is quite relevant. However I also believe that this topic is relevant for males as well. No matter the gender, it’s always important to get an insight of what it’s like dealing with these things and why those who have their period sometimes behave a certain way or need certain things.
Being born with a female gender usually comes with a price (or many). For some women, their period is hardly noticeable. Unfortunately, I’m not in that category.
My period tends to make itself known in all ways possible. Firstly, for at least a week before it starts, I usually have some heavy PMS. This includes getting very tired, sensitive and easily annoyed. The littlest of things can make me cry and break down during this week(s), and there’s usually a sensation of carrying a giant rock on my shoulders.
I also get quite bad skin, extreme thirst, back-pain, massive food/sweet cravings, dizziness, and my boobs swell and hurt a little. Good times.
Then when it finally comes, there’s usually some feeling of relief. But there’s also the messiness of it all, additional tiredness and sometimes cramps/pain. This goes on for another week.
So basically, every month I’m affected by my period for about 2-3 weeks out of 4.
Now, let’s discuss what we can do during this vicious circle, to make it just a tiny bit easier to cope with, and maybe even a little bit awesome. Since our society is doing almost nothing to support these female issues, I guess we just have to make it work ourselves.
GET YOUR DOSE OF VITAMINS & MINERALS
Firstly, a lack of vitamins and minerals can make your period and PMS so much worse than it has to be. Here are a few of the most important ones.
B6 – Here’s how to get Vitamin B in a vegan diet.
Vitamin C – Citrus fruits, Strawberries, Broccoli, tomato etc.
Iron – Dried fruits, whole grains, nuts, green leafy vegetables, seeds etc. (Remember to combine it with vitamin C since it helps your body to absorb the iron.)
BAKE SOME HEALTHY (OR WHATEVER) SWEETS
If possible, when having sweet cravings, make sure to avoid refined sugar and chemical sweets. It can really mess with your already unstable hormones. Try making my Raw candy bites that I wrote about recently, they are insanely satisfying. If not possible, have whatever you want. This is not the time to obsess over what you eat. Just remember to be kind to your body.
GET IT ALL OUT
Whether it’s tears, anger, frustration or all three of them, make sure not to hold it in. Repress is the worst thing you can do, since your feelings will come out anyway, one way or another.
My main dominant feeling during my period is usually sadness, so I sometimes watch really sad movies or listen to sad songs until I cry like a baby. If you’re angry; scream, yell at a teddy bear, or maybe listen to some heavy metal. By letting it all out at home, I minimize the risk of randomly breaking down in a public/ inappropriate situation.
DANCE A LITTLE
I usually don’t find it too tempting to spontaneously start dancing when I have PMS and feel like everything sucks. Then I would recommend this: Put on the music that makes you want to move the most. For me this would be Salsa music or just something Latino with a good rhythm. If this doesn’t inspire you, watch a dancy feel-good movie like Dirty Dancing (that one ALWAYS works for me). Maybe do something like this(link) and just get your endorphin’s going.
This goes without saying for me during my period. My whole body pretty much feels like a dry desert during the week before it starts, so I make sure to always have some plain water close at hand (NOT any flavored, bubbly or sugary water, please!).
USE IT FOR YOUR OWN ADVANTAGE
If your period is giving you any type of physical or mental discomfort, please don’t ignore it. Our period is not something we’ve made up as an excuse to get away with things (please punch anyone who says so).
It is a LEGIT REASON to stay home and drop whatever you were supposed to do that day.
When your whole body and mind decides to go against you, there’s nothing wrong with treating yourself to something extra. Have a home-spa day, for example. Take a bath, read a book, light some candles, have some chocolate. Spoil yourself as if it was your birthday. Rent a movie on Netflix, stay in bed, make someone give you a massage or buy you ice cream, wear a robe all day, brows photos of pretty boys on Pinterest. Endless possibilities.
SUPPORT YOUR SISTERS
To feel that others are in the same boat as you is probably the most helpful thing ever. Don’t forget that half of our worlds population know/ have known/ will know what you’re going through. So wherever you are in the world, you’ll always find a lady-friend who will support you and share your period issues with you. Bond over it, make jokes about it, complain together, be angry and sad together, bake cookies together.
TRY TO STAY AWAY FROM
Tinder, refined sugar, staring into mirrors, being alone, trying on clothes, people that generally annoy you, men without perspective..
Hope this will inspire you all to turn these days of negativity in to something positive! What’s your best tip for being on your period?