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Because of the reluctance in schools and in our culture generally to talk openly and soulfully about menarche and menstruation, at the Celebration Day for Girls we aim to provide a rich, creative and fun, as well as an informed day that supports a healthy, curious and open approach to this important and, for many decades of a woman’s life, pervasive feminine experience.
In the mother’s session, before the Celebration Day, you will have an opportunity to express some of your own feelings about your experience of menstruation. Women have often found this sharing to be revelatory and insightful, both their own and that of other women, and offers a path to a fresh new relationship with their menstrual cycle and female body.
Dr. Christiane Northrup, in her book Mother-Daughter Wisdom, says, “The mother-daughter relationship is the foundation of every woman’s health. It has more clout biologically, emotionally and psychologically than any other relationship in a woman’s life.” If you have had a difficult time with your periods you may not want to scare your daughter with graphic descriptions and the key to your support for her at this time is genuine communication and connection. You can share with her some of your experience in an age appropriate way as well as talk with her about how you want it to be for her. Allow ample time to hear her questions, ideas and concerns. The Celebration Day for Girls will gently and smoothly support this communication between you.
The Celebration Day for Girls creates a space where girls can feel good about their journey toward inhabiting a woman’s body. As your daughter sits with friends and a skilled facilitator she will imbibe a sense that she can experience menstruation each month in a positive and conscious way, and that, if she has discomfort or other menstrual problems, she can get the support she needs.
The Celebration Day for Girls facilitators have each undergone their own personal journeys with menstruation and have dedicated themselves to the rich practice of menstrual cycle awareness. Through this process they have become passionate educators in this field.
If your daughter has any anxiety about the day you can reassure her that at no time will she be asked to share anything about her personal experiences and changes.
Facilitators are well trained and provide relevant, factual information and girls can ask questions in a relaxed, supportive environment. There is also an opportunity for girls to write down anonymous ‘curly’ or ‘embarrassing’ questions.
We don’t want to give too many more details about the day to help preserve an element of surprise for girls, however if you would like to know more specifics please feel free to contact us, either the facilitator closest to you or via our general contact details.
- Seasons and cycles of life
- Exploring stories and practices from different times and cultures for a healthy dose of cultural relativism
- Practical ways to manage menstruation at school, at home and elsewhere
- The physiology and biochemistry of the menstrual cycle, hormones, menstrual blood (how much, what is it? And so on)
- Pads and tampons, commercial and reusable cloth and cups
- Puberty, body changes and emotions
- How girls feel about starting to menstruate
- Mother’s menarche stories
- Girls and women supporting each other.
- And more, depending on girls’ questions, concerns and curiosity.
You may like to have a look through the resources for materials that will support you and your daughter at this time.
Many mothers present the Celebration Day for Girls as a non-negotiable event and others prefer to ask their daughter if she wants to attend. In other situations the Celebration Day is a class curriculum event. Whatever your situation you are welcome to talk this through with your facilitator.
“My daughter was full of enthusiasm and confidence the evening after the workshop and was desperate to remember and tell every little detail that she had experienced … a great change from the apprehensive daughter I dropped off in the morning.” Ingrid
The two-hour mother’s session prior to the Celebration Day is scheduled somewhere between 2 weeks and one day before the Day, depending on when is most convenient for the group and facilitator.
From experience ‘public’ Celebration Days often do have girls who know each other or are related, however this isn’t necessary and our facilitators are skilled at creating a warm, safe and connected group for the Day. In this case girls are frequently excited about sharing their experience of the Day with their sisters, friends and schoolmates, as well as vowing to stay in touch with their new friends from the Celebration Day.
A Celebration Day for Girls can add many unique and special elements even if your daughter has already had numerous school sessions on puberty. These include: the opportunity for relaxed and spacious conversation and questions, a whole girls-only day, a sense of the wonder, beauty and interconnectedness of nature in contrast to a mechanical ‘plumbing’ approach, conversation and connection between girls and girls and their mothers and, not least, fun and celebration!
The Celebration is also a beautiful bonding for mothers and daughters around their own shared and age specific experiences. At the end of the Day participants may express what the celebration has been for them in slightly different ways, however everyone is clearly nourished, warmed and energised by the experience.