My first period

Lithia Brigan
Posted May 14, 2019

I was 11 and I remember that day vividly. I remember how it felt to run around the playground and play tetherball in the heat of the afternoon, how sweaty I was, the way my tummy started to ache, the scratchy brown and yellow tweedy wool skirt I was wearing, and the earthy-rich scent of the rusty dampness I found on my white panties when I got home and went to the restroom. I didn't know exactly what was happening but I had a clue, so I called my mom and showed her what I found. She pursed her lips into sort of a smile, cocked her head to the side, then started to cry, in that way you know someone who holds you precious and dear is so very proud but maybe also a bit sad and nostalgic at the same time. I knew it wasn't anything bad, but definitely something big. She told me I was becoming a woman and that with that came great responsibility. She told me I was capable of having a baby and that we would need to go visit the doctor for a check-up. She also told me that when I was ready to have a boyfriend or start having sex (which hopefully wouldn't be for a long time, when I found someone I *really* cared about) that she hoped I would trust her enough to tell her so she could take me to get some birth control that could keep me from getting pregnant until I wanted to have a baby. She gave me a pad and I remember it feeling like a diaper that got scrunched up in to a triangular wad between my legs as I walked around. I hated it. I had a heavy flow from the beginning, so it leaked everywhere and my underwear got bloody and I was generally uncomfortable and pretty annoyed by the whole inconvenience. A few days later, I asked her if I could try a tampon instead. That whole concept was pretty frightening, but I was determined to find something better than some stupid lumpy woman diaper. How was I going to play softball and steal bases and slide into home plate with that thing on?!?! To her full credit, my awesome mom not only showed me how a tampon worked but, because I was scared and asked her to, she actually got down on the floor in the middle of the bathroom and demonstrated how to do it herself. I remember we laughed hysterically about how weird that was at the time, but it's actually one of my favorite memories of her because that's *exactly* the kind of mom she was. I was lucky!

This story was submitted in response to Menstruation Matters.

Comments 6

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Corine Milano
May 14
May 14

Lithia, I absolutely love this story! I was also 11 when I got my period - on the younger side and I too remember the look on my mom's face: a mix of pride and sadness, nostalgia for when I was younger. I relate to your story so much, and am happy that you had a mom who showed you the ropes and was there to support you!

Kay Link
May 14
May 14

I am so glad your mother was there to guide you since it can be such a confusing - and yes, frightening and inconvenient - time. Having a women who can tell you whats going on, what it means, and how to deal with it is so key to a slightly easier transition into puberty. I am lucky too - I had a mother who prepared me ahead of time so I knew what was going on when the time came.

May 14
May 14

Your story is kind of related to mine. Its almost about friends and playgrounds then boom, haha.
Thanks for sharing your story.

Jill Langhus
May 15
May 15

Hi Lithia,

Welcome to World Pulse! Thanks for sharing your impressive and inspiring first story with us. It sounds like you were indeed lucky to have such a great role model and mom for this important event in your life. I'm looking forward to seeing more stories from you.

Hope you're having a great day!

May 15
May 15

I started my MENSTRUATION at age 15, I was in my final in secondary school. I already know aboit it though. Thanks for sharing.

Hello, Lithia,

I love your way with words. I could imagine how it was because of the descriptions.

I was also 11 when I had my period. It was so caring of your mom to give you those words of advice. You had a beautiful memory of your first period, and you are right, you are lucky to have such a mother.

Welcome to World Pulse! Please keep writing.

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