It’s always surprising to me to think back on what I knew about periods in my earliest years as a menstruator. I knew enough not to be shocked when it happened for the first time. I also didn’t know enough not to be shocked the first time I saw discharge in my underwear. What in the…? Disgusted and scared, 12-year-old me thought my body was broken. Eventually, I learned that discharge was normal, but I still had no concept for what it was or why it was coming out of my body during certain times of the month. And once you introduce cramps, headaches, and feelings of extreme confidence followed by bouts of intense sadness, it’s easy to feel like you’re losing control.
I was in my late twenties before I began to understand that there are actually four distinct phases of the feminine cycle—and that “my period” is about so much more than bleeding.
In understanding these phases and harnessing the unique energy from each one (a statement I would’ve deemed ridiculous even a few years ago), I’ve learned so much about my body, my emotions, myself. Since I began working at Cora two years ago, it’s been a dream of mine to create a guide to help menstruators everywhere understand the phases their bodies cycle through each month, and how each one comes with unique challenges and superpowers. This is that guide.
We cover the basics: What are the four phases and what does each mean for my hormones and body? And we share a recipe, exercise suggestion, and tips and tricks for feeling your best throughout each one.
I’m so looking forward to the day when we all have the language to articulate the very real effects the cycle has on our lives—and the power that comes from unlocking its potential.