My daughter thought she and her brother were both inside of me and I picked him to be born first. Now that she is a tween, her hormonal payback is to become the alpha period woman in the house. In all fairness, she started at barely 10 so I guess she gets some leeway in the menstrual department. But not much. I don’t appreciate her period app dictating for her and me.
I am an older mom by age. She is 12 and I am almost 48. When my mom was my age, she had a hysterectomy and a 26-year-old. I didn’t force her to sync up with anything. I didn’t even live with her. Her period discussion with me was basically, “don’t get pregnant” and here are some mattresses in a box. My 2018 tween wouldn’t buy that nonsense. She is open and honest and fascinated with the entire process. She talks to her friends and gives them advice on using a frozen water bottle to stop cramps. The questions I get while driving make me happy she sits in the back. We stood for thirty minutes in the feminine hygiene aisle while she looked for online reviews. It is all different and somehow embarrassing. I am a grown woman but I don’t talk about that with my girlfriends extensively. I don’t stand in the feminine hygiene aisle or search for blogs on reducing cramps. I grab what I need and hide it under the orange juice so the teenaged checkout clerk doesn’t see it.
I firmly believe my eye-level tween is in control of all of the hormones in the house. Her teenaged brother gets a hormonal zap that breaks his face out and make him cranky right around the same time. I am technically perimopausal and was looking forward to no more periods. Now, I am back on a clockwork schedule while the hormone general leads the pack. Note: she thought you only had periods until you were done having kids. If only dear sweet daughter.
We are going on two years of tween period angst. Every time she is one day late per her handy-dandy phone app, she comes to me worried she might be pregnant. I remind her (after my brief stroke/heart attack) that you have to be doing “you-know” to get pregnant. You aren’t doing THAT? She isn’t. But she still has some misguided idea that a magic pregnancy might have crawled in her body much she and her brother jostled around in side of me for 20 years.
She has made me buy her all black underwear and would love some $40 Thinx panties. In her own way, she is more aware and informed that I ever was. I was dumb enough to wear white pants and white underwear until I was in my thirties. She already knows that black is best when it comes to that time of the month. She knows to get Advil in her body when the cramps start and that a headache is par for the course.
While she may be very wise at only 12 regarding all things hormonal, I have but one request for her sweet tween self: please let your mama have her menopause. Take the hormones. Take them please. Stop being the period dictator. I’ll give you chocolate, a freezer water bottle and the $40 period panties. Just just me leave the land of hormones and enter the kingdom of white pants.
This writer has chosen to publish anonymously.