Welcome to Project Heavy Flow.
I recently participated in a performance of the Vagina Monologues. I enjoyed being part of the performance, but I noticed there was a lack of discussion on periods. I was thinking about it, and I realized that periods are such a complex issue that folks face and it could be its own show. This rumination inspired me to start Project Heavy Flow, and ask people to share with me their stories about their experiences with periods.
I’m not an academic, and I am not exactly sure how I will use all these stories that are shared with me. I do know that I want to gather these stories for a year, and then decide how I will use them. As the year goes on, with permission, I will share peoples stories on different topics on this site. I will keep you updated on my creative process of what I want to do with these stories.
To start Project Heavy Flow off, I want to share with you my own period story:
When I was younger, my periods were hell. My cramps were really painful, and I would often not want to move. Then I was put on birth control and it all smoothed out. As I grew older, I did not need birth control, my periods are pretty simple. I am extremely lucky, because my periods are a non issue for me. It lasts three and a half days, I get minimal cramping that is easily fixed with advil, and it’s all pretty smooth. My uterus functions as it should.
The hard part of my cycle is before I get my period. I have premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and it is the hardest week of the month for me. If you read other parts of my blog, you will know I have major depressive disorder and anxiety. I take medication, I go to therapy, and do many things to help keep it level. This all gets erased the week before my period. It is a hellscape that I watch myself go through, I am aware of the reason for why I am so depressed. I know what’s going on, but try as I might I cannot get my balance. I am constantly sad, everything feels so huge and dire emotionally, and I get overwhelmed. If ever I do commit suicide, it will be during this time period.
However, the minute my period starts the fog lifts like it was never there. I guess this is why I feel my period is so inconsequential; because I wait for it, count the days till it happens so that I can feel okay again. The bleeding and cramps are a welcome reprieve.
So that is my period story. If you want to tell me your own, and answer some questions please click the button below!