By NAOMI COTTERIL
What did you do Sunday night?
Me? I got a Period Mentor.
I’m not proud of it, nor am I 100% certain what a period mentor actually is but the sweetly pink flower shaped app winking cheerily at me from page two of my iPhone screen informs me that I have not just downloaded a period tracker.
Oh no no no, I’ve only bloody well gone out and scored me a Mentor.
I don’t know about you but when it comes to my usual Sunday night, downloading a program to mentor me through that time of the month is always on the agenda. Snuggled firmly alongside ‘shave legs to ensure suitability should shorts be worn’ and ‘attempt to navigate a path through human sized pile of clean washing that cats have nested in, without actually having to fold and put any away’ comes Period Mentorship.
I don’t know why I didn’t get on this bandwagon months ago. My new mentor assures me that it is there to make life easier, more convenient. That its discreetly reassuring presence will be there to track my flow, moods, changes to my skin and more.
The thing is, all I really wanted was somewhere to record the dates my period usually falls on. Something simple that maybe worked out my average cycle length and gave me a ‘oh hey there, so that thing you dread each month? Yeah, it’s on its way’ type alert.
After years of being on the pill, a mild case of PCOS and a baby twelve and a bit months ago, I decided it was high time to try and be an adult and get on top of things, so to speak, so that at least when my GP asks when my last period was, I can answer confidently as opposed to frantically scrolling through my calendar in an attempt to find a date that I know in my heart I didn’t bother writing down.
Instead what I got was a new best friend, complete with customizable colour scheme (pink is the default in case you were wondering) and a whole bunch of hints and tips. There’s even a forum to discuss all things period related (I’m guessing, I dropped in to chat just yet). It’s left me wondering; when did your period become such a palaver?
Yep, I’m the first one to put my hand up and say that I went looking for the technology, when I’m sure I could have put pen to paper (or finger to screen) and just noted down the dates myself and used my brain to calculate lengths and the like.
I’m still not certain whether to be pleased to have found such a helpful iPhone accessory, slightly offended at the suggestion that women have the desire to record every single detail of the five or so days a month when (cliché alert) the desire for roast potato and chocolates overwhelms every other or gently amused at the capabilities of my new buddy.
I’m sure I could go further and really get into a feminist interpretation of the whole kit and caboodle (hello, pink flowers and the ‘discreet’ nickname option to prevent ‘embarrassment’ should a stranger who has never been let in on the fact that women menstruate stumble upon the app and be startled out of their skins, but as I’m now thinking about roasting a potato, I’m going to save that for another day.
At this stage, I’m settling for somewhere between amused and terrified. Anyway, I must go. I’ve got weight and mood fluctuations to record.
Just don’t get me started on the discharge questions….
Naomi is a freelance writer, magazine gal and mum to baby Oliver and cats Oscar and Felix. She spends most of her time muddling her way through motherhood and blogging about the results. You can follow her on twitter @NaomiCotterill or check out her blog notjustamummy.com
How do you track your period?