Thursday, August 1, 2013

Summer Interrupted

Warning:
This post includes content of a womanly nature and the word 'tampons' is mentioned. Twice, if you count this time.

Prologue:
Once, about 16 years ago, I met a woman who had lost her teenage daughter to Toxic Shock Syndrome. She scared me into never using tampons again. I noticed that with the switch to pads, most stomach cramps and discomfort magically disappeared. It seems obvious now that if your body is trying to purge and cleanse itself then it's not going to take kindly to you bunging it up with a stopper.

Yesterday:
Yesterday Kindy-camp finished. Yesterday I posted "fail" on the website against those students who had failed to complete the course. Yesterday, when those same students called me to try and manipulate  persuade me to give them more time (that should be more more time to be precise) I told them it was all over and they should sign up for next year. Today began the chofesh hagadol (big holiday).

We had plans. Get to the local pool early and buy our subscription for the month of August. We had already found suitable photos of the two of us for the card-passes. DD went to bed last night with a smile on her face.

Yesterday I woke up with a headache. I was feeling exhausted, hot and sweaty although it wasn't so hot out (only 29 degrees C), and in need of food when I was way past not being hungry. I took a nap in the middle of the day. I had a mini-binge in the evening. I couldn't be bothered to do anything in the house or cook. DD had cereal and an apple for supper (there may have been some ice-cream and a packet of sweets involved - I don't even remember tbh).

You'd think that after 38 years x 12 months I'd recognise the symptoms.

Today:
DD woke up this morning shouting, "Hooray! It's the Chofesh Hagadol! Are we going to the swimming pool?"

I told her I'd got an email saying they weren't opening it until Monday. Luckily we went swimming last weekend at our friends' kibbutz.



It's now lunchtime and here we are doing puzzles, watching Mary Poppins, and eating something from the freezer.

Me: Shall we go out and do something fun as it's the chofesh hagadol?
DD: Nah, lets just stay at home today.

At the risk of being a SMOG (well actually I'm the biggest SMOG ever), that's my girl! :)


23 comments:

  1. only 29C!! Its 27 here today, sweltering, thankfully we live by the sea, love that pic of your DD!! Stopped using tampons years ago after reading about the same thing, better safe and all that!

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  2. LOL - any time it's under 30 we are so happy that it's not so hot. And i agree with you, even though the odds are against it happening, I'd be too nervous to wear them now after all these years.

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  3. I am now going to be an annoying logical scientist, but here goes - your body is not trying purge and cleanse itself when you are having a period - it is simply shedding the extra cells lining your uterine wall. Putting something in your vagina to absorb this blood is not stopping this process. I have never noticed any difference in cramping whether I have used tampons or pads - cramping is due to uterine muscle contraction. The cramps when nursing having given birth are evidence to cramps when using pads not tampons. My personal discomfort with pads is 100 times more than with tampons.
    All that said - well done for writing a post containing the word tampon twice!

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    1. First of all, Gillian, you are never annoying.

      Now, to address your scientific points, why can't shedding extra cells be called purging and cleansing. It certainly feels like it (emotionally as well as physically)? Afterwards the uterus is clean of blood (I've seen it during a hysterosalpingogram and was amazed by how clean it looked) and ready to start building a new lining for the next ovulation.

      Despite there being uterine muscle contraction, I stopped getting stomach cramps when I stopped using tampons. Obviously there is some personal discomfort when using pads - it's not as fresh as going without obviously, but for me that discomfort is far less than the aches I used to suffer. Of course it could be totally psychological or even co-incidental. But it works for me.

      And yes, I have come of age. I won't wear them but, by gad, I'll publish (rather than perish?)

      Thanks for commenting.

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  4. I also found toxic shock syndrome very scary, but I understood that it was about not using tampons correctly ie leaving them in much too long? But it is a good reminder for me to tell my 20 year old that in case she doesn't know x

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    1. I certainly don't consider it reckless to use tampons but personally, I'm happier not to.

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  5. There are safe alternatives to tampons that you can swim in of course, like the mooncup...http://www.mooncup.co.uk/

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    1. I've read about that but didn't know you could swim with it.

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    2. Yes you can. My daughter has been using them for years.Have a read on their website and hopefully it will answer your questions. Of course the easiest way is to buy one and try it. Good luck.

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    3. Had just come along to say exactly the same thing :) Mooncups are excellent. Not cheap, but then again, they're reusable, so over the life of it you save against disposables.

      The thing about cramping is common with many women, and is thought, as I understand it, to be to do with tampons absorbing more than just the blood and drying out bits that should stay damp. I also understand that TSS doesn't apply to organic tampons - I can try to find the research on that if you like?

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    4. Thanks Jax. I don't need the research as I'm ok with pads at this stage. I've looked at the Mooncup website though and I'm tempted to try that.

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    5. You should look at some real life accounts too - I have blog post about when I first started Mooncup wearing - and they take up a lot less space too!

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    6. Thanks Pinkoddy. I'm looking into it.

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    7. I never comment, but I was going to mention menstrual cups as well. They revolutionized my life! There are tons of different brands available in all sorts of sizes, shapes and colors. I kind of forget that people still use pads and tampons.

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    8. Thank you for taking the time to comment. I really should try it before it's too late and I missed a whole new era for women.

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  6. I also heard about someone dying from Toxic Shock Syndrome when I was younger. It was shocking to hear but didn't stop me using them as I lived in dance leotards at the time, for years! I also often needed both forms of protection - sorry!- so glad those days are over for me ;)

    Enjoy your month off and think of us Irish mothers of teens who have 3 months of school holidays to get through. 3 months!!

    xx Jazzy

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    1. 3 months of holiday is insane! Why? The days of all hands needed to pick the potatoes are surely long over?

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  7. I don't think I could manage without them. I would have killed myself long ago if I had to use pads every month. OK, maybe I'm exaggerating, but only a little.

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    1. Would be tempted to try the Mooncup?

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    2. Looked it up. Um maybe. I'm 47 and it's like my parents and smartphones, they don't see the point in learning something new at their ages. Question is, is it more or less gross than a diaphragm (which is gross enough)?

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    3. I don't know as I've never used a diaphragm or a mooncup.

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  8. I find tampons uncomfortable too and get much less cramps etc without. I've not been brave enough yet to try a moon cup though. Yikes.

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    1. It does sound like it requires a leap of faith - especially at 20 quid. If i get my hands on one there may be a post about it here. I'll let you know. :)

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