When I was in the fifth grade, I think,
I woke up one day to my first period.
I’d heard of it,
But I didn’t understand it.
I called out for my mother.
I was panicking.
She laughed and gave me Always pads.
She told me how to use them.
I was really upset.
She went and told my father,
And then she went and told his aunts,
Because they lived downstairs at my grandmother’s.
Soon everyone knew.
I felt very embarrassed.
I got used to it with time.
The older I got,
The more I read and learned about it.
I stopped feeling embarrassed about it.
“Yeah, I’m on my period,” I’d say.
That was reason enough for my mood swings.
I’d ask anyone for pads.
I’d call my father to get me some on his way back,
And I’d describe in detail what kind I needed.
I now treat the whole thing with nonchalance,
Even though I sometimes feel disgusted,
And can’t stand my period,
Especially when my flow is heavy.