My husband and I recently went on a vacation… ALONE!! (or at least it was supposed to be).
We all have that one family member who refuses to take a hint. Despite having the tough conversation, and ultimately just blurting out “WE DON’T WANT YOU TO GO,” they are adamant they tag along anyway. For me, that family member is ALWAYS Aunt Flo. She’s persistent, constantly nagging, wreaks havoc on my mind and body, and has ruined more clothing items than I can even count. Popping pills makes her more tolerable, but the sheer amount of extra baggage required when she tags along and the amount of discomfort I endure when she’s present is beyond annoying.
The Unwelcome Guest
If you haven’t already caught on, I’m talking PERIOD ladies! For years I’ve spent time and money trying different things to make my time of the month more tolerable. Midol, different birth controls, tampons, pads, wine, heating pads, diet changes, curling up in a ball and crying, all the chocolate, and even more wine. There are things that took the edge off, sure, but ultimately I was still waking up in the middle of the night to a bloody mess despite wearing the largest most obtrusively sized pads known to man.
During the day I was changing out tampons constantly. Not only because you have to change them often, but because every time you pee that obnoxious little string gets soaked and the idea of walking around with a pee string just isn’t appealing to me.
Internally I was screaming to the menstruation gods, “FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS, I GREW AND PUSHED OUT THREE CHILDREN, RUINED EVERY PAIR OF WHITE EVERYTHING, AND AT 34 YEARS OLD I SHOULD NOT HAVE TO BE WEARING A DIAPER TO BED. CUT ME SOME SLACK!”
The Menstrual Cup
Well, the menstruation gods listened and they spoke to me through my favorite channel, targeted social media ads. Enter, the FLEX Cup! Truthfully I’d been eyeing menstruation cups for awhile. I was totally intrigued but the reviews scared me. A lot of people loved them and had great things to say. But it only took a few people saying they really had to “fish around” to get it out that made me say, “ANNDDD I’m out!”
Then along came the FLEX cup ads. These guys had accounted for the fishing around problem and added a little pull string on the end of the menstrual cup that not only helps remove it easily but also helps break the suction. The reviews were awesome, you could wear it up to 12 hours at a time, empty it and wash it, and then put it right back in. It was also available at a local retailer. I figured there’s no time like the present and thus became the proud owner of a FLEX cup.
Our vacation was mostly a hiking trip. Hours out on the trails, no access to a bathroom, a lot of walking, and strenuous climbing. There is no way I was hiking in a pad (all the chafing) and tampons weren’t really an option considering the frequency in which I’d need to change them. I’d had my FLEX cup for a full cycle so I was able to get comfortable with it and really understand what worked and what didn’t. When it came time for our trip I was confident that little cup was going to be the answer to my problems, and it was. I changed it twice a day, once every 12 hours. I hiked, swam, cliff jumped, slept, peed on the side of the trails, climbed, and did all the things without worry, without leaks, and without creating unnecessary waste.
I am now a recovered tampon user and leaving the diaper-wearing to our 14-month-old.
If you’ve ever considered a menstruation cup but are a little apprehensive, I highly recommend the FLEX cup. It’s a great place to start, my only regret is I didn’t make the switch sooner. I’m sure Aunt Flo will continue to tag along uninvited, but having this in my arsenal makes her presence way less daunting.