Bleeding On A Goa Trip
What I am gonna share might gross you out, or you might speak in hushed voices amongst yourselves; what was the need to disclose this? Or, well, how does it matter? Or what an attention seeker?
Guess what I don’t give a damn. And, scores of women out there also don’t give a flying rat’s ass about your opinion. But some do and others are conditioned to do so.
This last long weekend due to holi was a perfect opportunity to pack my bags and fly off to Goa. And I did, with my gang of girls from the office. Apart from the fact that nothing can go wrong when you are in a place like Goa, I happened to be nearing the date of my cycle. With a prayer in my mind and packets of pads, yes you read that right, packets stuffed in my luggage, I boarded the flight.
Female bodies are weird man, they just give out mixed signals. Imagine, you are partying and all of a sudden you feel a sudden splash in your chaddis and you are tongue-tied. I personally feel this is the universal WTF moment for every girl and woman. Anyway, in spite of my hard prayers (it never works) the moment I landed Dabolim airport I had to rush to the washroom only to be greeted with blood.
Frankly, it was disappointing. I was contemplating what if I popped some pills to push the date, why couldn’t it wait till the day of our return, and what not? I was not happy. Ughh! The discomfort, the pain, the exhaustion and irritation. Enroute to our hotel, it was well past 10, I was strategizing the next 3 days to roam around Goa with pads and tampons in my bag.
We reached our hotel, freshened up, changed into our night clothes and went out for dinner. We just wanted to hog and sleep. Stepping out on the calm, dark Goa roads adorned with beautiful palm and coconut trees, I realised how stupid I was acting, worrying over a natural process like menstrual cycle. I decided to let my body have its blood fest but, that wouldn’t stop me from exploring this beautiful place.
I let my body carry out its function, not like I had any other option. But, I stopped fretting over it. And guess what, I was not cranky or moody or bitchy. I felt the discomfort on the second day, which is natural given the flow is heaviest then. And, add to it the fact we had a packed itinerary for that day. Especially inclining the Chapora fort.
That same night, we went out clubbing and it was one of the best night outs I have had in awhile. Despite of the fact, each of us were tired and I was particularly, dead tired. At least it felt like that. I actually thought of skipping the clubbing plan. What was it that pushed me to get going, clean up myself, put on the make up and get ready for the party? I don’t know. But, I am happy I took the decision to not stay back in the hotel and go out with my girl gang. We danced and danced and danced some more, fatigue was shown the door and we owned the dance floor. All this when I am on the 2nd of my periods.
The next day was equally eventful and hectic, and again I sailed through the day with much more energy and spring in my feet, compared to the previous day. By the end of the trip, I realised, it was all in my head. I just explored Goa with my periods on. Of course not downplaying the fact, that certain level of discomfort and body pain--again it depends from body to body-- was experienced and it's a given. Also, just because it happens to us every month, it doesn’t mean I am used to it. Pain is pain, the effect doesn’t subside because it is happening for the second time or the nth time. It must be noted I didn’t push my body though. I only did what I could handle and didn’t let a monthly happening like periods, paralyse my life for those 5 days. As simple as that.
My learning from this incident; do not let others decide what you must do with your body. Shaming a woman when she’s on her period, is our favourite sport. PMS jokes and period jokes are a sensation on social media. Plus, we have a long list of dos and don'ts for women during their "impure days." I am not going to waste my time on counting them. They are absurd, nonsensical and demeaning to women.
No one’s going to decide for me whether I should be stepping into a place of worship or not, during my cycle. Let me decide for myself. I did, and it was a liberating experience. I decided not to make it a hurdle for myself and also took care of my health. I don’t want to prescribe to your set of rules and sit back at home behaving like an infected patient. That’s because I am not one. Happily bleeding and roaming Goa, made for a memorable trip. And now I thank god for getting me closer to my body.