The latest video that is going viral on the internet is killing me. So many memories came flooding back. Flowing back, if you will. It’s about a girl who fakes her first menses because all of her friends have gotten it and she feels left out. Her mom finds out about her little red lie and decides to completely humiliate her and throws her a “First Moon” party. A party to celebrate her coming of age. It’s freaking hysterical. The depths the mother goes to is remarkable. It made me understand what my mom must have felt when I joined the ranks of womanhood. And made me so excited for my own daughters.
When I got my first visit from Aunt Flo, my mom was beside herself. I was mortified. A few months prior, she actually sat me down and talked about what to expect when I was riding the crimson wave. She brought props. I was given (just like the girl in the video) a young woman’s “starter kit” complete with books and calendars and diagrams and maxi pads that resembles diapers. I was horrified. She just kept smiling and hugging me. I wanted to die. When my monthly bill finally arrived, I was prepared physically, but nothing could have prepared me emotionally.
I dreaded telling my mom. But I had to. Why? I’m not really sure. But I guess I felt I had to because she was so looking forward to the big day. Part of me still regrets that decision. I told her and it was worse than I expected. She was so happy. Again, with the smiling and the hugging. What was there to be happy about? I didn’t get it. All I knew is that Juan and Dat didn’t have to go through this and I was pissed. It wasn’t fair. It was the first of many lessons on how it’s so much easier to be a man. You heard me, I said it.
I finally confided in my mom late one night. I told her under no circumstances was she to tell anyone, especially my dad. I was really just trying to protect him. I was certain that he had no idea what these women’s troubles were and I certainly didn’t want to be the reason he found out. I knew he wouldn’t be able to handle it. She swore she wouldn’t tell anyone. Okay, so at least we were clear on that. But I still had to figure out how to get her to stop smiling. I’d have to sleep on it.
The next morning, I woke up like I did every other day. Except for now I was a woman and it was that time of the month. I wanted to just pretend nothing had changed. So I decided to just try to forget about it. That lasted the entire thirty seconds it took me to get to the kitchen. There, I was greeted by both my parents. They were making the biggest breakfast I had ever seen. And they just kept smiling at me. Nothing was said, nothing had to be. My dad came up and gave me a super awkward hug/high five. She told. How could she? I will never forgive her for this.
Seeing this You Tube video made me realize it could have been much worse. And now that I’m a mom of two girls, it got me so excited. I have years to plan the perfect “first moon” celebration. Now I understand what all the smiling was about. Taking the first step into womanhood is a big deal. I’m picturing a parade throughout the entire neighborhood on a ovary-shaped float. Sticking maxi pads all over the house. Dangling tampons from the chandelier. By then technology will be even more advanced. Perhaps I’ll be able to stream the entire ordeal live. Or have some sort of sensor implanted in them to alert me at the precise moment there is a code red. The possibilities are endless. And I can’t wait to hear one of my clueless sons whine, that’s not fair, I didn’t get a first moon party!
Beau comes from a family of all boys. He had no clue what leak week was all about. I found it exhausting having to explain to him how the female anatomy operates. It took him years to be able to drink a Bloody Mary after that discussion. I still remember the first time I asked Beau to go to the store to buy me tampons. I didn’t even need them. I just thought it was hilarious to see how nervous it made him. When he came home he was overwhelmed. There were so many to choose from. Now I just send him a text with a picture of the exact box I want. And sit by the phone waiting for him to call me to say he can’t find them.
I have already compiled a playlist on my ipod just for my girls. To get them pumped up for the big day.
I’m Every Woman – Whitney Houston
I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor
Hold On – Wilson/Phillips
Girl On Fire – Alicia Keys
Don’t Stop Believing – Journey
Stronger – my girl, Kelly Clarkson
Born this Way – Lady Gaga
Girl You’ll Be a Woman Soon – Urge Overkill
I am Woman – Helen Reddy
Eye of the Tiger – Survivor (because no song empowers like this one)
Ironically, some of these songs are also on my “what to play at my funeral” playlist.
Being a woman truly is a gift. A gift that keeps on giving. Now I understand why my mom wouldn’t stop smiling. And I can’t stop smiling thinking of the whole other level I will take this to for my own seed. They will certainly be embarrassed, but one day they will look back with appreciation that I was so happy for them. Just like my mom was for me.