The return of menstruation

How does the relationship with itself change and with the others from the Menarca to the first child? We talk about it with Pulpo Stella! Menarca, the beginning of a more or less monthly coexist with menstruation. Emotions, joys and pain pervades Tuttə's body during the fertile age, also influencing relationships with the people around us. During this period, menstruation can be interrupted: for example, with the arrival of a pregnancy (and then reappear following the birth).
But what do we know about it?  We talk about it today with Pulpo Stella, writer and founder of the blog "Memoirs of a vagina". A space, the latter, where all over the years have had the opportunity to speak of sex, love, menstruation, relationships, friendship, work, equality, pregnancy and much more.

Furthermore, for a year, Stella has become the mother of a splendid little girl.


Stella, do you remember when you had the menarca? Did they tell you something about the subject?
Of course, I remember him perfectly. It was the day of my 12th birthday! I went home from school and found the dirty underwear, I saw a very dark stain and, honestly, I did not immediately understand that it was blood. I washed me, I changed me and pretended nothing. After a few hours, however, here again the spot again. I called my mother, and the arcane was revealed: I had "become a young lady" (so she used to say at the time).
I was prepared, in general, because my friends were coming, I knew that it would happen to me too, although nobody had explained to me in detail what this meant for my life and what changes would bring to my body (the boobs would have grown, this Yes, I knew and expected it).


Over the years, what was your relationship with menstruation?
Quite positive. I have caught every time they presented themselves in conjunction with a journey, of course, but we have always had a rather peaceful relationship. Punctual, regular and short. Only in recent years, aging (alas) have become more painful.


When you found out you are pregnant, what did you notice from?
A week late. Having always been punctual, in fact, it has become suspicious of me. I thought it depended on the stress of that period, but when one morning I vomited, I decided the time had come to buy a test.



How did you experience the fact of being in amenorrhea during pregnancy?
Naturally. Pregnancy modifies the body (the shapes, the volumes, the colors - I think of the nipples and vulva that become violet) and its habits (activities granted and prohibited, nutrition, sleep), therefore the suspension of menstruation is only one of the aspects which mark a change compared to the previous stage.
Overall, however, I lived it as a positive break, a beneficial effect, a bit like radiant skin and very thick hair.


And the return of menstruation, on the other hand, what effect did you have?
I had the head of the head of a month and a half from the birth, let's say soon, and the thing on the one hand made me think: “Oh no! Already?! ", On the other hand it was a signal that my body was slowly returning to its" normality ".


From a relational point of view, how has the relationship with your partner changed during these phases?
The change in the body, habits, lifestyle, priorities, is something that necessarily changes the relationship with yourself, even before with the partner. There is the interruption of previous narratives; There is the suspension of professional commitments (which often contribute to fueling our self -esteem and our vital independence); There is the need to focus on after a long period in which almost all of our energies is aimed at gestation, expulsion (is technical jargon) and care of a tiny specimen of the species.
When you finally raise your head and look in the mirror, you have to understand where you are, overcome the apparent irreconcilability between who you were and who you have become, find a way to understand you and to ready the other. It is not valid for all, let's be clear. But for many it is like this: creating the solid foundations of a new, extended identity, which holds the best of the previous one and adds, is an essential, but slow process. Requires awareness. It requires patience.
The partner sometimes understands, sometimes not. Sometimes we manage to explain what we feel, other times we are too confused to facilitate a flow diagram of our emotion. Certainly, you have to give yourself time, to be patient, be lenient, do not give up communicating, avoiding useless resentments, asking for help without being ashamed and without feeling guilty of anything. With the partner you have to find yourself, and I will tell you that it is also beautiful, overcome the initial impact, to discover yourself in a new role, richer (metaphorically, of course, the children cost), more complex, more familiar if the term pass me.


Stella, in the light of your first pregnancy and your first year as a mother: what do you think are false myths (on pregnancy, childbirth and post partum) and what is it true?
Oh well but here I could write an encyclopedia and I think I have already been sufficiently long. I just say that, in general, there is no regulatory or universal narrative of these crucial moments in a woman's life.
Any attempt in this direction is ineffective, or dishonest. False myths come from all sides (from the social networks on which pregnancy is told with the same pastel shades of a recipe to make cupcakes, as if by the result of aunts/grandmothers/friends who always know the right way in which you need to do things that you, poor inadequate, certainly ignore). The only transversal thing that, I feel like saying, is often elusive, is the ambivalence that is in these moments. The meanings are strong, the colors are saturated, the neomad lives very high peaks of joy and fullness, as well as very low peaks of tiredness, loneliness, anguish. My impression is that it often gives voice to the former and tacked the latter, perhaps for fear of being judged badly, for fear that one's humanity can be equivocal as little maternal love. Here, in my opinion it would be important to make known that such an indelible moment in life is a moment that includes dark shades (in addition to the beautiful ones).
Which is normal. That we are not wrong. That we are not sun. That it is not just the tiredness of being behind the children (whoever would have ever imagined it, that he would not have been relaxing like a stay in a luxury resort), but of a creative force so powerful as to modify the inclination of our axis inner. Which is an extraordinary and frightening thing together, to which to be a little more prepared badly does not do.
What do you think should change in the way of informing women about menstruation and pregnancy?
I believe that, nowadays, there are many channels to access information also of discreet quality on both topics (this applies to our cultural frame, of course, if we move to other latitudes the situation is extremely more critical, just think of the stigma that the Mestruation still represent in many countries - often in relation to religions - and period poverty which, however, is a problem even by us, more than you imagine).
Having said that, I think it would be time to change the culture of the body, the gaze we address. Learn to know him instead of judging him. Welcome it and discover it, instead of feeding inconvenience and repulsions. Studying it, in the case of the female body, since some of its operations (or malfunctions) are still little known, given that for science the standard body is the male one. Menstruation, pregnancy, menopause, sexual pleasure, are all themes that we should discuss more and better, to really understand them, normalize and free them from an imponderable amount of false myths and prejudices.


Antonella Patalano

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