March 24, 2008


Celebrate menstruation? Absolutely!

Because our menstrual blood is sacred. It is the lining of our wombs, which is designed to nourish new life when we conceive, and is shed when we don't... (much like a snake shades its skin to renew itself).

And because Sacredness and Celebration are not contradicting terms.
When that which is sacred is not also celebrated, with light-hearted joy, then it is in danger of becoming stifled.

Menstrual Monday
was started a few years back by a women called Geneva (I do not know her last name or her whereabouts)

Determined to help spread awareness of menstruation as a sacred journey, I joined this lighter-hearted cause, not as a main dish, but as an appetizer for women who may come to graze, and stay for dinner...


The Monday BEFORE Mother’s Day...because menstruation comes before motherhood...and usually long after it, too.

To create:

* A sense of fun around menstruation

* To encourage women to take charge of their menstrual and reproductive health

* To create greater visibility of menstruation, in film, print, music, and other media

* To enhance honesty about menstruation in our relationships


In your living room,

your dormitory,

classroom or apartment,

at a friend's house,

at a park or other open area,

the center of campus,


in a restaurant or cafe,

just about anywhere!


* Throw a Menstrual Monday party

* Wear Red

* Eat Red foods

* Share Red roses

* Tell the story of your first menstrual period, or your last

* Create Red art to express your relationship with your menstrual flow

* Organize a costume contest

* Hold a panel discussion on women's health issues

* Invite women for a messy spaghetti dinner


Mother's Day falls on different dates in different countries.

Once you figure out when Menstrual Monday is in your country (the Monday BEFORE Mother's Day) - spread the word and plan your gig.

If Mother's Day has already been celebrated in your country, please join the USA festivities day: 5/5


To make this an international day, I've started a group on Facebook called:

I Bet We Can Rally 1 Million Women To Celebrate Menstrual Monday 2008!
Please help spread the word!

You can join the group by joining (it's free and open to all).

Start making plans now with friends.

What are YOU doing on Menstrual Monday 2008???

Visit DeAnna's website at:

March 8, 2008

My first period ~ DeAnna's story

I was about 12 and and owned a book called "A Baby Comes into the World," which was given to me by my Mom a few years earlier. Even though we looked at the detailed drawings of Female and Male anatomy, and she read the book to me more than once, when the day arrived -- none of that, apparently, sank in.

I found a dark red stain on my undies when I went to the bathroom. I had no clue of what it could be, and decided to ignore it. I pulled my pants up thinking the stain would go away by the evening. A few hours later, when I found that it didn't, I told my Mom. She identified it as my period and we proceeded to go to the bathroom, where she strongly emphasized that I needed to wash often when my period came.

My Mom was scientific and cold about the information she gave, and cleanliness was her main point. She never mentioned the word "dirty," but her stress of the need to wash gave me a clear message: my blood was unclean. It followed that we both discard of our pads in the trash, where all dirt goes... After I was washed and "padded," she gave me one quick hug and said I was a woman now. It didn't mean much and there was no warmth in her hug. I went on to think of my period as "nuisance" for years afterwards, much as she did.

Most of my memories center around feeling mortified of the thought that the boys would find out... I remember a dream in which I was wearing white pants to school, and unbeknown to me had a huge red stain on my behind. The boys' laughter was humiliating, and I woke up feeling deep shame. I have a few memories of feeling camaraderie with girls who started bleeding, but we all thought of our periods as bothersome.

I discovered the sacredness of my Moon Blood, and the depth, beauty and insight that come with conscious flowing, only in my early thirties. It has been an empowering journey, and now, at the gateway of menopause, I cherish my flow even more, knowing it will not be with me forever.

Having sat in circles with women and girls around the world, I found that sharing our First Moon stories has a profound healing effect. Regardless of differences in detail, the stories resonate with women everywhere because of the feelings they evoke. I strongly believe that creating sacred spaces for our First Blood stories to be told and shared, is essential to our growth as women, individually and collectively. It is also a step in modeling strong, confident womanhood to the girls in our midst.

As an open invitation to sit in a virtual Red Tent, I created a discussion group on Facebook, called My Virtual Red Tent.

The group is a place to share our stories of First Blood, as well as Last; to convey revelations and insights from our cycling years; to ask questions and invite answers; to have open dialogues about the meaning of living life as Cyclical beings; and to explore the wisdom that comes with the end of cycling, as we enter the Crone phase of our life.

The address for 'My Virtual Red Tent' group is:

In order to join the group you would need to join Facebook first (it's free and open to all) by going to

I hope to meet you in an actual Red Tent, one of these days...
Until then, why don't you join the virtual one?
Welcome to the circle...

March 6, 2008

"My first period" ~ Rosie's story

How was your first period? Most women never told the story of their first blood... You are invited to share your stories here, as we create a virtual circle of women, giving voice to that which has been silent for so long...

Gianna Rose Williams
(Rosie to her family and friends) has just turned 16, and her first period story is one of the most uplifting ones I heard. Here it is in her own words:

"My first period was about as exciting an experience as it could have been!
I was always extremely anxious to start it because I felt it would make me more adult and womanly. Months before I started I was very emotional from all the crazy hormones. After a while both my mom and I just knew it needed to happen, that it was time for it to come out of me! That evening we squeezed in a bath tub of ours and just laughed and laughed with each other for many hours.

The next day I went to the bathroom after school and there it was, all over my undies! I was so excited! I ran inside and saw she was helping someone in the shop, so I just patiently stood over on the side, I'm sure with this huge grin on my face, until she came over and asked me what was up, and all I had to do was smile at her. Then I handed her my bloody undies and said "These are for YOU!" We both started giggling, jumping up and down, and hugging each other!!

At first I wasn't sure what kind of product I wanted to use (tampons, pads, moon cup.....etc) I wanted to experiment with tampons. They hadn't invented the natural ones with an applicator yet, so I waited until the natural version came out with applicators and used those for a very long time. Around the same time someone told my mom about the Keeper Cup and how they loved it and that it's so much better for you because it lets you flow and there is nothing blocking or stopping your natural flow. For a while I didnt want to use it because you have to rinse it out everytime you go to the bathroom.

Once I tried it, I loved it, and after consistently using it, I never got anymore cramps!! I think tampons may be one of the main reasons so many woman get intense cramps, but I definitely noticed/notice a huge difference in me.

I am very lucky to have had such a great experience around my period, and have it be something exciting and not have any shame or guilt around it. As I have found out, the majority of women don't really feel this way about getting their period. I thank my mom grandly for that! Hope more and more people are having wonderful new experiences around their moon and that this is inspiring to mothers and daughters everywhere!"

Rosie's story stands out because it is so rare.
Hearing it is inspiring, while sharing our own stories is healing. There is a bond that happens when we share our stories (all less than perfect) and hear how deeply they resonate in other women's experiences around the world. This is an invitation to share and heal...

March 3, 2008

Menstrual blood art (2)

Thanks to those who posted comments as well as the many who wrote to me privately. I always welcome feedback and dialogue, so keep writing!

For all of you women who are inspired to paint with your Moon Blood,
one technical point: your paintings need to be sealed once they are completed (regardless of your canvas material). Sealing will prevent cracking or fading, and will preserve your painting. What to use? Let me tell you how I found out...

I entered the local art store and my heart skipped a beat when I asked for a sealant (wondering what I would say if I had to describe what it was for).
- "I want to fully preserve the color of my painting" I said.
- "Are you using oil or water-based paint?" asked the woman behind the counter. I glanced around to see who else may be hearing me, took a deep breath, and semi-whispering I courageously announced: "My menstrual blood..."
The woman was un-fazed.
- "OK" she said.
Not a muscle moved in her face, as if people came in every day looking to seal their menstrual blood paintings (perhaps they do?)
- "Would you like it to have a matt or a glossy look?" she asked, business-like. I sighed and had to stop myself from bursting into a laughter of relief.
- "Matt" I smiled.

Given her total lack of surprise I was hoping for a conversation, half-expecting to hear the story of her journey with blood painting, but she disclosed nothing. If she was shocked, she certainly didn't show it, neither did she show solidarity. Utterly neutral she escorted me to the cash register where she reminded me to read the instructions on the sealant spray bottle, and to allow the painting to fully dry between applications.

It worked! A few coats did the job, the color remained as deep as my blood ever was, and the painted drum looks exactly as it did before I sealed it, which is how I wanted it to look.

Vanessa Tiegs is the only other artist I know who creates with her Moon Blood. You can view her powerful paintings at -

I was about to post this when an email arrived from a fellow Moon Blood devotee, responding warmly to the previous post, and adding: "Menstrual blood is also wonderful for a facial. Apply blood as-is, allow to dry, wash off and enjoy soft skin!" This is delightful news! I would certainly try it... and I thought there was nothing new I could learn about the subject...