It was just yesterday a student said to me, “I can come up with a 100 reasons not to come to class, but when I do finally show up I feel so good after practicing.”
This morning I logged onto the online app and cancelled my 5:45a yoga class. Not because I wasn’t awake or I didn’t want to go, but because it’s shark week. I got my period late Tuesday afternoon, after my 5:45a yoga class.
I practice at least 3 times a week. On a good week, I can get into the studio 6 times. Then there’s the ever frustrating week were I get my period. When I am on my period I usually just skip yoga. Back in the day, 8 or so years ago, I would have just sucked it up and shoved a tampon up there, thinking nothing of it. Since then I’ve given up using tampons**. I’m a hippie, what can I say. I currently use Luna Pads, they are washable menstrual pads that are made from organic cotton. I love them and I’m not throwing pads into the landfills! I’ve used them for over 8 years with no problems. Well, just one “problem.”
I knew that I really wanted to practice on Wednesday night before I taught my evening class. I didn’t want to practice in my luna pad though. I practice hot yoga and a bloody/sweaty cotton pad on my lady parts for 75 minutes didn’t sound like fun – for me or my fellow yogis. Since I really wanted to practice, I headed to the Safeway to buy…tampons.
I waltzed into Safeway and headed to the feminine hygiene product aisle. I immediately start to look for organic unbleached tampons. There’s none. Okay, let’s see what the name brands have to offer.
I shit you not here are the ingredients:
Cotton, Rayon, Polyester, Polypropylene, Polyethylene.
What the fuck?!!! Rayon, Polypropylene, and Polyethylene is not something I plan on sticking in my vagina! I start frantically looking at all the tampon ingredients. Every motherfucking one of them has these ingredients. EVERYONE! I’m pissed.
Not to go all Bill Nye on you but, our skin is the largest organ we have and we absorb all sorts of shit through the skin. Shit that comes in contact with our skin is immediately absorbed into our bloodstream with no filter. This is a big fucking deal. There are chemicals (i.e. Polypropylene and Polyethylene) that are known carcinogens (these bastards cause cancer!) and you are absorbing them quicker because they are coming into contact with skin. Think about the kids who soak tampons in vodka and then insert them into their vagina to get drunk. There’s a reason why they do that. Not to mention if you are using bleached conventional tampons you are most likely absorbing a nice helping of bleach and GMO’s/pesticides.
As for Rayon, this fiber is highly absorbent. That’s a good thing right? Well, not really. Because Rayon fibers absorb more, they will need to be changed more. The more your change your tampon, the more you increase your risk of tiny tears in your vagina and that increases your risk of infections. Here’s another great thing about Rayon, when you do to remove the tampon, tiny Rayon fibers can stick to your vagina wall. These tiny, highly absorbent Rayon fibers can create a mighty healthy environment for Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS).
I ask if there is a natural health section in the store, and of course there isn’t. So, I hop back in my car and swing on over to Kroger (Freddy’s, City Market, King Soopers you pick). I mainline it to the feminine hygiene aisle.
No organic tampons!
At this point I’m thinking there’s no way I am going to be able practice before my class. I’m about to give up when I look up and see, tucked away in the right-hand corner of the store, a “Natural Beauty” section. I rush over there to locate organic tampons. Sure as shit I find them.
Organic unbleached cotton.
That’s it – organic unbleached cotton. Is that really too much to fucking ask for in a tampon? I pay a couple dollars more for no applicator. I grab two boxes and head home.
As yoga time approaches I plug up. I am instantly reminded why I quit using these things. People say you can’t feel them. Well, I am super sensitive to everything in and around my body. So, yes, I guess if you aren’t as sensitive, you won’t notice the heap of cotton up there. I on the other hand, do notice it. It’s not uncomfortable, it’s just annoying and unnatural.
I go to yoga and teach my class. The tampon does its job, but I’m not in love with the idea of the tampon. I woke up this morning and started to get ready for my class. I said, “Fuck it.” Logged onto the yoga app and cancelled my next 3 classes. I’m just not going to practice during shark week.
Sometimes it’s more important to give your body a rest, than it is to power through. If I used a tampon this morning and for the next 3 classes, I would be powering through. Listen to your body, even if it means resting for days.
I now have two boxes of tampons. They are organic cotton. I will be carrying if you need some. I promise not to judge.
**If you do use tampons properly dispose of them. That means NOT flushing them down the toilet! If you have a daughter, teach her how to properly dispose of tampons as well.