I’ve had a mixed relationship with my body when it comes to menstruation.
I started when I was 12, and was a little pissed because I had swimming class that day, and my Mom was broke, and she only used pads.
I was running late but had to get money off of my already strapped Mother, run down 6 flights of stars, goÂ to the store, get back up 6 flights of stars, figure out how the hell to put this thing in my vagina, and get to the YMHA in time for our swim class.
It was not a beautiful coming-of-age moment.
My first boyfriend was not impeded at all by the flow of blood. Not. At. ALL. In fact there was no behaviour he cared to modify sexually because of a little blood. Blood was just something that came out of me, he reasoned,Â and therefore flawlessly beautiful.
I neither realized how rare a position this was nor fully appreciated it at the time.
In subsequent years I’ve seen men run away like scared rabbits from menstrual blood. I’ve heard women use terrible language in regard to their own bodies when it comes to their periods.Â I’ve had partners decline to fuck becauseÂ I was bleeding…despite the fact that I really really want to fuck when I am bleeding.
And that fucking sucks.
A few years ago I was traveling round Europe. I wound up in Norway…in Oslo, specifically.
I was vising a friend I’d met online, and we were going to hang out for a few days. There was a modicum of sexual tension, and the unilateral approach was “Well, let’s see what happens.”
The first night I was there, my period, which was an almost constant companion due to my unstable health and spiraling alcoholism, re-surged with a vengeance.
I’d been at Vidar’s huge brooding dark Victorian house with its slick wood floors and huge windows and vaulted ceilings for a few hours. Having known one another online for a while now, the transition to real-time was very simple.Â IÂ was grimy from my travels, Â and as he prepared some roasted reindeer for supper, I sat in a hot bath watching my insides slowly turn the bathwater pink.
“Well, so much for any fucking anyway.” I thought.
So I thought…
After aperitifs, roast game, many rounds of boozy conversation, and booming glorious stertorous Edvard Grieg rolling through the place, I was fairly certain that my Viking friend had some mischief in mind.
Seriously…seducing someone to Grieg is best left to crazy fucking Black Metal Norwegians in whose veins runs the blood of Vikings. Don’t try this at home.
I was trying to ascertain when the appropriate moment to advise him that I was bleeding…profusely…might roll around.
I’m not a presumptuous girl, so I thought it might be best to wait until I was pretty certain a fucking was imminent before saying anything.
And sure enough the fucking was soon imminent and before the ropes got too elaborate and the cuffs were secured to the bed I mumbled something about him needing a towel. He furrowed his brow, pale blue eyes observing me coldly.
“Why? For a little blood? Pfft.”
Well, OK, whatever you say…
Not long after that it was more than a little.
It looked like an episode of Law & Order SVU: Oslo in this bed. Seriously. There was even a bloody hand-print on the wall. How that got there I’m unsure.Â But slicked with blood and sweat and my bodily fluids everywhere, a long while later, I was pretty ready forÂ a break.
I was still twisted into some impossible position and half bound to the bed when he got up and strolled across the room to fetch his cigarettes. Sitting back down beside me on the bed, he said nothing as I lay there, regarding him silently.
His forearms, dusted with copper coloured hair and thick with muscle and sinew were, I realized, slicked spotted and smeared with blood.
Blood was under his fingernails, and his rough callused hands were slapdash with red.
I was about to mention this terribly obvious fact as I watched his bloodstained hand grope to his bedside table to retrieveÂ his lighter.
He casually flicked the lighter on, the whoosh of the flame’s Â ignition drawing my eye away from the curve of this thick rippling shoulder to his other hand, also blood darkened, and caressing a cigarette.
My mouth parted slightly as I watched him light his cigarette and draw slowlyÂ on it, bringing the smoke from the smouldering tip into his lungs and out through his nose.Â As he dropped the lighter back on the table, I could not tear my eyes away from the deep red pigment that clung to his fingers as he raised the cigarette to his lips, bloody fingers and cigarette and cool amused stare noting my round-eyed expression.
His gaze wandered over me, over the bed, taking in the sheets the walls the rumpled stained blanket, and he took another drag on his cigarette.
His free hand, also blood-gilded, Â caressed my chin as he grinned, his thick accent corduroy in my ears as I smiled up at him.
“Quite a mess, little girl, yes?”
Happy Half-Nekkid Thursday ;-)