TRACKING YOUR MENSTRUAL CYCLE

How well do you know your body?


Up until 2017 when my periods started to go irregular, I have to admit I didn't know mine that well at all. Little did I know then that it was the start of a premature menopause caused my Premature Ovarian Insufficiency.

In hindsight all the signs where there, my body had desperately been trying to show me it was under stress which had manifested in auto-immune conditions

Raynaud's Disease when I was 14 years old and then Lupus when I was 18 years old, then intermittent ovarian cysts as I got older but, unfortunately I was so disconnected from my body it wasn't until I was 35 years old I finally decided to listen to what my body was trying to show me.


I was put on the contraceptive pill as a way to alleviate my heavy and painful periods at the age of 14 years old. Like many it was seen as the normal thing to do and then as I got older I stayed on it as a contraceptive method. After the ending of a on -off long term relationship at the age of 32 years old. I decided to come off it once and for all. After this my periods seemed to regulate back into there "normal" cycle so I didn't think any more of it until I went travelling in 2017.


Even though I should have been laughing at the thought of not having any periods whilst travelling I began to feel intuitively that something was wrong. This is were my interest in Eastern Medicine began as I learned about Ayurvedic Medicine the sister science of Yoga which advocates a natural and holistic approach to healing our physical, emotional & mental health during my time in Nepal and India.


In trying to get to the bottom of what was going on in my body I also came across lots of information including how our ancestors blood cycles used to sync with either the New or Full Moon with both having symbolic meanings, which I go into in a bit more detail further on in this blog. Traditionally in time gone by our ancestors of many cultures would come together during the New Moon in what was known as a Red Tent or a Moon Lodge to rest and support each other as well as collectively tap into their feminine energy, Inner Wisdom and Intuition.


Whilst travelling in India I took part in Women's circles which included moon rituals to honour our divine feminine energies. Ever since then I have become fascinated with the moon and how connected we are to her.

Just like the moon changes and goes through different cycles, so does our physical, emotional, hormonal well-being.

On average a women's cycle is 28-29 days which is the same amount of days as the moons cycle from one new moon to the next.

There are also 13 moon cycles every year & as women on average we have 13 blood cycles. You may also have noticed if you still menstruate how you end up syncing with friends and family you are around a lot. Just like the moon our divine feminine energy is so so powerful.


Although I no longer have a regular menstrual cycle I still use the phases of the moon to track my moods and energy levels throughout the month which helps me stay grounded and in control of my mental health. You can also use it to help you for fertility

reasons.



MOON PHASES


New Moon - Menstrual

Days 1-5

Shedding of Uterus resulting in blood being released as a period.


First Quarter /Waxing Moon - Follicular

Days 1-11

Follicles begin to develop as your pituitary gland releases the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) — through the bloodstream to the ovaries which then start producing the sex hormone oestrogen.


Full Moon - Ovulatory

Days 12-16

This is peak time for fertility. Body temperature increases and ovulation happens at around day 14 if you have a regular 28-day cycle and lasts roughly 24 hours. However, sperm can last up to five days in the fallopian tubes so having sex during this 6-day window means that egg fertilisation is possible.


Last- Quarter/Waning Moon - Luteal

Days 17-28

The sex hormone progesterone and a smaller amount of oestrogen is released to thicken the lining of the uterus and create a structure called the Corpus Luteum ready for egg fertilisation regardless of whether or not fertilisation occurs. If no pregnancy occurs then the egg is released from the structure and the body prepares to start the menstrual cycle again.


Right now we are in the Last Quarter Moon phase meaning the moons releasing energy has reached it's peak. For us this is a sign for us to down tools as much as we can and take the time to rest. And if your period is in sync with the moon phases then physically your body is preparing itself to release and shed.


But don't worry as some women may find that their cycle is the other way round and they may be moving towards ovulating at the New Moon. There are many spiritual theories behind this one being that women who menstruate on a New Moon (White Moon) are the ancient earth mothers and their energy is need inwards to nourish and take care of themselves where as those who menstruate on a Full Moon (Red Moon) are seen as powerful priestesses here to empower the women around them and give their energy to others , In our ancestors time they would have been seen as the witches, medicine women and healers. If you are interested in finding out more then I recommend reading Wild Power: Discover the Magic of Your Menstrual Cycle and Awaken the Feminine Path to Power by Sjanie Hugo Wurlitzer and Alexandra Pope or The Red Tent by Anita Diamant.


Unfortunately, it is recognised that we are no longer as connected to the cycles of nature as our ancestors once where. Nowadays our bodies natural rhythms are out of sync due to our busy lifestyles, blue light from electronic gadgets and technology, stress, lack of sleep etc the list goes on meaning our hormones are all over the place.


I know working with the moon can seem to "woo woo" for some people. But I do believe as a woman you can use her as a compass to understanding yourself on a deeper level whether you menstruate or not and even if you no longer have a womb.

In doing so you empower yourself by getting to know when you are out of sync with your body which can often help us to detect underlying health matters earlier on.

And emotionally some day's we may feel full of energy and shining bright just like the Full Moon other days we may feel tired and want to hide away from the world like the dark moon phase when it's no longer visible in the sky.

When we can begin to understand that there are greater forces in play that effect our mind, body and soul then we can also learn to go a bit easier on ourselves and surrender to the ebb and flow of life.


I would love to know what you think?


Does your blood cycle sync with the new or full moon?


Do you track your cycle/ emotions throughout the month?


Let me know in the comments below...

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