TMI! Feminine Care for the Woman in Ag!
As you know, I share many things that I'm learning or have learned on The Rural Sisterhood blog. Well, this is no different. If I have found something that makes life easier for me as a woman in ag, than I want to pass it along. That being said, the title gives you an idea of what this post will be about, so if you'd rather not hear/read about feminine care than please just click away. No hard feelings!
I am under the firm belief that the more we worry over challenges or problems the worse they become. Our monthly period is the same way. It is a pain and a challenge especially during our busiest seasons in ag!
I don't know about you but I find myself becoming this ball of emotions, walking around like a tired zombie and having this hunger that rivals that of a teenager except without their metabolism. If you want a little laugh you should totally check out this video by #IMomSoHard. Laughing about your period keeps you from crying over it.
Anyways, there's nothing like swathing, seeding, moving cows, harvesting, camping, corn chopping, etc. compounded by working around men, with no private or easy place to take care of things, AND having to deal with your period on top of that!
Here Are My Biggest Pet Peeves
*"I love carrying around a ziplock with essential items and eventually another ziplock with those items now used as I move between vehicles and equipment", said no woman ever! I'm sure you've gotten to experience this additional challenge to being a woman in ag too! There's nothing more exciting than carrying around spare feminine hygiene products and then your used items all day until you make it to a garbage can. ?
*Trying to coordinate and plot out a time when you'll have enough privacy in a huge wide open field to actually use the items you're having to carry around with you, while not delaying the progression of harvest or whatever task is at hand and avoiding undue attention to your needs. Such a frustrating thing. ?
So, I finally tried something that is not mainstream and it has been well worth the effort.
In fact, I'll never go back to carrying around feminine items and have thoroughly enjoyed throwing away every item I have found floating around our vehicles (I didn't realize how much I had stashed "just in case")! This was my reality until I found menstrual cups. Now before you go running away screaming, hear me out.
*There are a wide variety of choices, so you can choose something that fits your body and your needs! There are cups with different thicknesses, different feels, different shapes, different tabs to help you remove them, AND different colors too!
*Depending on the size of the cup and the heaviness of your period, you can go for many more hours before emptying without the risk of infection! Now that is awesome when you are juggling things like we do in ag on a daily basis. On my most heavy days, I have gone up to 5 hours with a cup before emptying and I can wear my usual underwear throughout that week, instead of having to change into underwear that I hate and will accommodate a pad!
*Many women report decreased cramping, decreased dryness, and lighter periods while using a menstrual cup. Those are all things to be excited about!
*Taking care of things is so much easier. I get out of the swather/combine/pick-up, use a wet wipe (something many of us keep in our equipment anyway) to clean my hands, squat to pee, remove my cup, pour out the contents, replace the cup, kick some dirt over it, use a wet wipe to clean my hands, and I'm on my way again.
*You can save money and save the uncomfortable (it shouldn't be uncomfortable and its part of life, but still...) purchases at the store by using a cup
*It has offered many women, including myself, a more positive outlook on their periods!
*Using a cup has also provided me the opportunity to start the discussion (at age level) with my daughters on how our bodies were created. Because I have a more positive outlook about my period, I can now pass that on to my daughters as well!
*There is support out there as you learn to use a different feminine care product! See links below!
Here is the cup I use and highly recommend!
This is the Super Jennie small. It is soft, easily bent, and easy to manipulate. The learning curve was not very steep. They had fun colors to choose from (any "fun" I can add to that time of the month is a must). They are a small but growing business and made in the USA! Their customer service was wonderful. They answered my questions, responded quickly, and I felt like they cared for me as their customer. I recommend them to any friend with whom I can broach the menstraul cup subject! You can check them out here!
Lastly, if you've tried a menstraul cup and it wasn't successful I'd urge you to try again because there are so many options out there now. One thing that really helped me was the Menstraul Cup Worldwide (closed) Facebook Group. I found tons of helpful information and folks who were willing to share their experiences and help me problem solve in the beginning.
If you have any other questions that I have not addressed or you would like some clarification, please feel free to message or email me. I don't scare easily and I'd be happy to share more of my experience and help you find a happy place within your period! ?