To introduce today’s topic, here’s a little trip down memory lane. After the beginning nightmare, you can skip to 8:40 for the really good part.
Last week BratzBasher’s class separated into boys and girls and were introduced to the great mysteries of puberty. Yay. BB came home with a bunch of literature that practically had me rolling on the floor with laughter and declaring it to be excellent blogging material. Yay! Seriously, where do they come up with this stuff? BB and I had a great time joking about it. We’ve already had most of the period talk, but ridiculing the propaganda really set her mind at ease.
I felt just like her at that age. Don’t make a big deal out of it. Just tell me what to do about it and then forget we ever had this conversation. One line in a brochure (As far as I’m concerned, glossy = brochure, not pamphlet.) says “Every girl remembers her first period, where and when it happened, who, if anyone, she told, and even what she was wearing.” I don’t. Is that abnormal?
The first thing that caught my attention was Growing Up and Liking it: Kate’s Diary. It’s supposedly written by a preteen, but no kid talks like this. Below are some of the choicest excerpts.
I almost can’t believe I’m doing this. I’ve never written in a diary before. I guess I’m doing it because I want a friend to whom I can tell things without getting back an opinion. So, I’m considering you to be like a secret friend, diary.
Mrs. Muller, who’s also the school nurse, gave us some charts and special information about the physical changes that are happening to me and to other girls. It really helps to know that we all develop at different rates. I don’t want to lose any of it, so I’m pasting it right in here.
I’m trusting this important information with you, diary. Here it is!:
[followed by 7 1/2 pages of technical information with commentary by “Kate”]
That’s a lot of information to get all at once, and I know I’m probably going to have to read it over about a zillion times before I understand it. [Obviously, Katie isn’t the brightest bulb in the chandelier.] But I think it’s so interesting. Best of all, I found out that life doesn’t have to change just because you get your period. I can still do all kinds of things — like swimming, dancing, and soccer during my period. Once I get it, that is. Which is great, because now I can feel good about growing up and doing all different kinds of things — just like Heather!
I sure wish my period would hurry up already! It seems like the whole world has started menstruating except for me!
Congratulations to me! I FINALLY got my period. Now I can start my new school and feel really grown-up.
Going back to school is going to be extra-special this year. It’ll be like starting a whole new life. I wonder if Greg will notice the new me!
Today is such a special day! I feel proud to be growing up. And happy to be me!
Yeah, I know. When you’re done either barfing or laughing your head off, read on for some of the section headings of It’s a Happy Thing.
- It’s not summer vacation, but it is a great journey.
- Things will begin to shape up for you. [Get it? Shape up?]
- Sweating is good for you. So why the big stink about it?
- Your period. Celebrate it with an exclamation point!
There’s also an ad for a book called My Little Red Book — a collection of first period stories. In the author’s own words:
The idea behind the book is to end the awkwardness around periods, and maybe even make them cool! If nothing else, I hope this book helps you get a conversation flowin’ [pun intended?] with your daughter, and helps her see that she is not alone.
Of course, there’s a whole guide to choosing the right products (all the same brand that published the brochures, of course), coupons, and a special 40% off coupon for Justice [What the heck is up with that store’s name?] so that you can “celebrate with your daughter”. Not that we shop there, but what kid wants to use a coupon that came from the puberty pamphlet? Hi! I have this coupon for 40% off because I got my period! Yay me!
BratzBasher hasn’t joined the club yet, but I think she’s relieved that I’m not going to make a big deal out of it. She’s comfortable asking questions, but she isn’t expecting a cake or anything. Especially not a pink one.
Don’t forget — the Guilty Pleasures contest ends on Monday, May 31st!