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kill pill: part twelve – meet your royal guinea pigness

 

Image by Saskia Jones

Image by Saskia Jones

Killing pill is like a spinning wheel and this little guinea-piggy finally landed on red. I got my first period after three months and only a withdrawal bleed to my name. The plot bloodies and thickens, as most timeless tales are wont to do.

Given the focus of last week’s column, this is – potentially – a very revealing find. Kill Pill Part Eleven was about what it means to love one’s pussy beyond altering its appearance. Exploring this led me to believe that the mere intention to love one’s vagina must be enough to set True Pussy Love in motion. And, lo and behold, one of the most tangible signs of a healthy body and uterus – The Fifth Vital Sign – revealed itself to me days later. I said “love” and it said, “ovulation / menstruation”. But let us travel back in time to better understand what may have led to this most triumphant and bloody interlude.

I became a guinea pig. In the name of Pussy Love, I decided to try pampering myself every day. Quick, call the doctor, something’s wrong! She’s caring for herself! Yes, pampering this regularly feels strange because it challenges the voice in my head that insists there’s something better to be doing. And in speaking with other women, I unearthed a seemingly widespread concern that the whole going-off-the-pill thing may devour a lot of time and energy.

Bright-eyed industrial designer Rose Whetham shared with me that she wants to Kill Pill, but taking the time to prepare her body and mind feels crucial. ‘I’m reluctant to go off it because I’m in my final year of uni and I’m worried that I might have to deal with some side effects,’ she explained. ‘Some say that your body and emotions go into overdrive and it may take a while for everything to balance out.’

It’s true that every woman will face something different when she stops taking this prescription medication every day. Understanding the reality of that choice is important. But not all effects of it are going to be negative. Life and work can benefit from going off the pill, too. I’m more attuned to my energy, my feelings, my thoughts and my body. As a result, I work more efficiently, what I do is of a better quality, and I enjoy it more. Sure, I had a fever a few days in. Sure, my skin has been more congested. Sure, my cat died. But these things happen whether you’re on the pill or not.

And the Pussy Love rituals I’ve been trying don’t take up that much time, either. My days are “sprinkled” with acts of pampering that extend beyond the area of the vagina, yet feel deeply connected to it. One ritual is facial steaming with cedar wood oil. Cedar wood is an “emmenagogue”: a substance that stimulates and regulates menstrual flow. It’s also thought to relieve any pain or discomfort that comes with menstruation. Organic Facts suggest mixing it with a carrier-oil like almond or jojoba and applying it to your feet and tummy. I mixed it with sweet orange, used it in an oil burner on my desk and in the steams.

I’ve also been doing exercises in a book by Louise Hay called Mirror Work. Hay believes saying positive affirmations to your reflection each day can heal your life. I haven’t been doing them every day, because sometimes it takes a bit of a non-judgmental push to get to them and I’d obviously rather keep hating myself and feeling drained on occasion. But when I do get to them, I’m always grateful, because the feelings they conjure alter my state for the better. So, repeat after me! I’m adequate for every situation! I’m loveable and loving! I create with ease! I’m beautiful! Yeah!

I’ve also been wearing a copper ring. To the untrained eye this wouldn’t seem like much of a ritual or a pampering, but don’t be fooled. I bought the ring a couple of weeks ago because I thought it was pretty and when I took it off I found myself experiencing strong phantom-copper-ring-sensations. Upon further research, I discovered that copper assists with the absorption of iron and zinc through a process of “transdermal micro nutrition”. Livestrong.com says the combination of copper, sweat and skin allow these minerals to be absorbed by the body more effectively. This is significant, because iron and zinc are two minerals that are essential to having a healthy menstrual cycle.

A little while ago I also started using Femometer, which is a fertility-monitoring tool similar to Daysy, but selling at a fifth of the price. The design is akin to a lipstick, it comes in different colours and operates via Bluetooth with the app – no cords required. This seemed appealing and communications with the company were swift and direct.

I now take my temperature each morning and enter my data: mood, sleep, exercise, etc. At first it asked me to enter the details of my last period, which was confusing, because I only had a withdrawal bleed three months ago to declare at that point. But I contacted Femometer via their Facebook Page and they told me to enter the information anyway and wait two months before trusting the predictions I receive. They’ve been fabulous to deal with and I cannot tell you the joy I felt recording “period day” and, in response, the device telling me to “eat well and pamper myself”. Roger that.

It’s true that an array of products have entered my life since establishing my rather pampered, Royal Guinea Pig status. But before we write to Susie Orbach agreeing that female empowerment has leapt from the arms of men and into the clutches of the marketplace, know this: I’ve been contacting numerous companies producing numerous products on a quest to find what helps to Kill Pill. I’m a guinea pig, trialing and reviewing what is on offer to us. I’m sponsored by naught and endorsing no one. You can have faith in my words; I love them and my pussy. Neither shall be bought, because neither have a price.

And the rest can be a beautiful, bloody silence.

 

Disclaimer: Consult your local sexual and reproductive health clinic or GP before going hormonal contraceptive free. The views espoused in this article are that of the author and not Lip Magazine.

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