In the second year of my undergrad, I was hanging out with my neighbours and we got on the topic of first period stories. “Do you remember the day you got your first period?” The conversation turned into a sharing of experiences. There was so much power in allowing others to hear a story that may seem strange or embarrassing. I began having very similar conversations with a number of people in my life that menstruate or have previously menstruated. In the age of the “free bleed movement,” “the menstrual cup revival,” “period panties” and “tampon tax,” periods have been getting a lot of media attention in recent years. The more frequently these conversations are had the less taboo they become. Normalizing the conversation around menstruation works to destigmatize those who menstruate, and their cycles.
The original idea for this project was intended to be a video, a set of interviews responding to the question above. But the more I thought about it, the less the faces of the storytellers were important to the message I was trying to convey. It’s not important to know the identities of those who have shared their stories. The power is in our ability to connect with one another via shared experiences.
Submit your story here.
Images from Period: The Streets, Public Installation, Waterloo, Ontario