My periods came once a month until they stopped. And when they stopped, a part of me stopped with them.
Like every woman on the contraceptive pill, I had played ‘God’ with my periods before, skipping the lolly tablets for a special event or holiday. But that was always in my control. When my periods ceased for two years and three months (and yes, I was counting) due to extreme weight loss from a chronic illness, that was anything other than in my control.
I never appreciated how integral periods are to a woman in her fertile years, until my body showed me exactly how much it physically and emotionally missed them.
The day my period returned was one of the most emotional days of my life. I had started to get a little cramping that morning and had said to myself, “You know what, I miss you; I miss my periods, I’m ready for you to come back.” Was it my body feeling loved or just simply coincidental, but later that day, sitting on the toilet in a country town pub, I finally saw those so desperately missed stains of blood.
I walked into the nearest chemist in a haze; I called my mother with tears streaming down my cheeks; and I sat with my hands on my womb for what seemed like an eternity. Talking to a girlfriend later that week, she said she hadn’t heard such excitement around a period since our days of entering puberty. To mark the event I returned some of my blood to the earth, in a sign of gratitude, as we as women did many, many moons ago. (Post continues after gallery).