By ROZ CAMPBELL
If you’re reading this there’s a 50% chance you are a woman. Given that, if you’re in good health, there’s a 50% chance you have/ used to/ or will experience a menstrual period during your life.
I will always compare every period I have from now on to one I experienced last September. I am an ambassador for local charity One Girl, and as a result decided to take part in the “Do It in a Dress challenge”– raising money for girls’ education in Sierra Leone. The idea behind Do It in a Dress is, you pick a challenge, set a fundraising goal and do it in a school dress. Simple. I sat down for a while feeling a little anxious about picking a challenge. I really needed something that people would pay attention to and support. I felt like going to work or eating a bowl of soup in a school dress just wouldn’t be interesting enough, let alone motivation enough for my network to donate money towards.
So, the conclusion I came to was I would do away with my conventional methods of managing my period. Instead, I would use the methods I’d heard women and girls in the developing world resorted to every month – rags, sponges, newspaper, leaves, bark.
Maybe I should have just eaten a bowl of soup.
It was a difficult and uncomfortable time.
But you know what? I’m sure it wasn’t nearly as bad as what women in the developing world face every month. I have a shower, a toilet, a washing machine, I have everything I could ever need to live a healthy and successful life. I don’t have to walk for kilometers everyday just to collect water for my family with a damp rag shoved between my thighs giving me rashes, infections and bruises. Getting my period hasn’t stopped me from getting an education.
And I’m pretty sure it hasn’t stopped you either.