I recognize these cramps.
Oh crap. I forgot to bring my pads. I have to run out and buy them now. Why does it feel like a walk of shame every single time? This is ridiculous.
Will my period bleed through the two maxi-pads I’ve painstakingly stuck to my undies? The last thing I need is for people to know I am a woman. There’s a lot of shame in that.
If only tampons didn’t feel like a cork made out of sandpaper. Then I’d opt for those.
I’m wearing a knee-length dress today, but I haven’t shaved in a few days. Are my legs too hairy for the dress now? Will people judge me if I have a few bristles here and there? Will I lose credibility as an adult?
I’m so bloated though. I needed to wear something loose and comfortable. Any tightness whatsoever will exacerbate the already barely bearable pain.
I want to drink directly from a hot sauce bottle. Also, chocolate-need that. I can’t concentrate on anything but how hungry I am and how much pain I’m in.
Time to stand up and walk to a restaurant. Wow. My underwear straight up feels like a diaper full of blood. Fun.
Don’t make eye contact with anyone on this street. Look busy. If you look occupied, maybe the men will be less likely to hit on you. You’re definitely too tired to deal with this today.
“Hey beautiful. How are you today?”
Just look ahead. Really, ignore him.
Oh-bigger group of guys loitering by the bus stop. Walk on the street to avoid walking through them on the sidewalk. Do you really have time to call the police today after you’re sexually harassed? That’s a no.
My stomach cramps are getting a lot worse. I’m going to try and pretend that nothing’s happening. Maybe if I had a cold, I could talk about it openly.
Periods are gross, though. Because we’re all six-year-olds.
I am quite emotional. My hormones are everywhere. I can’t tell a guy that. I might have the displeasure of becoming an example shared by men about how women are crazy on their period, which then gets extrapolated to us being too unreliable to be trusted any of the time.
Yeah, that’s why I’m over here working the same 40-hour workweek that men work as knives cut into my pelvis and my mind is dizzy and fatigued. Because I’m so unreliable.
Work meeting is next on the agenda. I’m sitting in a one on one, and a male coworker brazenly interrupts my meeting to start a full-fledged conversation with the other man in the room. I’m waiting for them to stop wasting my time, so we can get back to the scheduled meeting. Did you never learn manners, bro?
My debilitating pain is making my patience even thinner. Just make it to 5 pm. That’s all you have to do.
Finally, I get in the Uber home. The driver is quiet at first, and then he starts asking personal questions. I feel the familiar awkwardness of being torn between wanting to maintain my right to privacy and not wanting to be a bitch. Because women who don’t comply with “friendly” men are arrogant bitches.
I get home. Scratch that. I crawl home. I make it into my bed, order myself a giant super burrito, and take a deep breath. I made it.
One day down, the rest of my reproductive years left to go.