Blood or Tradition?

Sabbu Maharjan

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Looking at my blood stained cloth and full of fear I went at the door of the kitchen trying to narrate that situation to my grand mum. With the face of much aggression and the worried look she just warned me not to enter the kitchen. As fast as she can she took me to my room and started elaborating all the stuffs that I cannot touch and do for the next 10- 15 days.

I was literally unaware what was really happening to me and what exactly I have to do to stop this drops on my skirt. Having a fear and curiosity about my own condition I was burning inside. Suddenly there came one of my cousin with a sanitary pads on one hand and fruits on another. That same sanitary pads which I have only seen in TV adds before. Pity me who was unknown about the way of using it. After she went outside my room I opened that packet and looked at while. Giving a glance at the fruits, I started asking a question to myself. ”Is it because I am sick or is it because of the happiness of meeting me. “

According to my grand mum a strict thing to be noted was not to look at my own father and brother during this whole period. But the things which are really not allowed was the one I tried giving a glance from my window to my father.
Whole day it was a new experience for me but the real pain started at night.

Continuous drops of blood was making me feel uncomfortable to even sit at one position and on another side the pain with which I was trying to fight since evening was more devastating one. Thinking about this same pain that I have to bear each month was killing me inside. Cursing the holy god and myself for being a daughter was only thing that I could do whole night.
Whether I should feel myself lucky enough because I was not send outside from my house in some dark and corner places as it was with one of my cousin before some years or helpless.

Is menstruating a topic of shame or the matter of pride for which I have passed one of the phase of being mother. Most probably it is the second one. But in case of mine it was taken as the first.
Is menstruating a sign of impurity? As my grand mum was saying to each of the people who came to visit to have a holy bath before entering their own houses was making me feel yes I am impure.
Sharing the stories of my periods to all the women was the topic of the gossip to my grand mum but the same thing to even my father was embarrassing to her. Whatever it was to other but for me it was full of pain and discomfort with which I have to live around 5-6 days each month following all the benchmark set by my elders.

It’s been years since I am going with the same periods. Though my family rules are as it was before but I have learnt living with it.


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