Changing the Narrative – The Next Generation

with Holly Lo & Emma Rose

This is an unedited transcript.

Welcome back to the mom days podcast. I am your host, Holly Lo. And we are in the midst of an amazing series all to do with our reproductive health. So this has been very eye opening for me. You think you get to a stage where you’ve heard a lot, you’ve learned a lot. And then you start talking to new experts and two guests. And you go, wow, there’s still so much more to learn and to really adjust the narrative on how we approach our reproductive health and our periods and our cycles, hormones, all of that stuff. So today, we have a special guest with us. I didn’t have to go far to find her, just down the hall. So this is my middle baby. This is Emma rose, and she is joining us today and I’m going to let you tell us a couple things about you. So you can tell us how old you are. And maybe a couple of your favorites. Like what’s your favorite thing to do in your spare time? What’s your favorite kind of movie? And what’s your favorite food? How’s that? Okay, so let’s start with how old you are.

I am 10

You’re 10 years old. And what’s your favorite thing to do? In your spare time? Talk to my friends talk to her friends. This is my little social butterfly here should not like her mama when it comes to being an introvert. She’s like her daddy. She loves to be with people and talk to people. All right, what is your favorite movie? Or type of movie? Maybe rom coms rom com cool. He’s already been introduced to the rom com genre we had the Oscars the other night. Or murder mystery, or murder mystery. Yeah, you’re good with your you like reading into Drew and books like that. What are we watching? Right

Harvey? Hurry,

boys party boy in the heart. What are we watching right now that

you like to talk mysteries?

We’re not mysteries for all our Canadian fans. We love Murdoch Mysteries. Talk about CBC hitting it out of the park. They have created an amazing series with that one. If you’re not in Canada, try to look it up. It’s on Netflix, Canada, Netflix, I don’t know if it’s on US Netflix, you have to let us know. Alright, so we are having a conversation. We had a great conversation with neck cream. Greta is from Australia. We’ve talked with Dr. Danielle and we’re gonna have lots more coming up. But I wanted to talk to someone who’s not there yet. Who has questions. And this sweet girl is amazing at asking the questions that she wants answers to she has no problem asking, I have no problem answering. So kind of like we talked about in our last Convo, we were saying how the narrative has to change. Ladies, we have to start changing how we approach periods, reproductive health and how we share this information with our kids. Not just our daughters are boys as well. And if my older one was feeling a little better today, I probably have him in here too. But we’re gonna keep it between the girls today. Okay. Yay. All right. So I’ve got a question for me. And I want to start there. Because I think there are really a lot of negative depictions and conversations around periods in particular and our cycles. Would you agree with that? Um, would you say that most like girls, that you’re your friends who do have their periods? It’s not something they enjoy? No, not at all? Is it? Does it seem like a negative thing? To have your period? No. Doesn’t seem negative doesn’t feel like a bad thing. That’s good. We don’t want it to come across as a horrible experience. But it’s definitely not something they look forward to correct. Yeah, yeah. I mean, I don’t know too many people who look forward to it. But I know growing up, and even now today, the way that many women and moms we talk about our periods is very negative. It’s very much that we hate it. And it’s so painful, and we have so many bad symptoms, and there’s so much that we just can’t stand it and our emotions are horrible, and we’re grouchy and all these things, right? And our daughters hear this, and our sons hear this too, for that matter. Because I’ve also heard for many years, you know this, you’ve heard men making comments that are really considered derogatory in my books, about, you know, your just PMS thing, or it’s just that time of the month, or, you know, much worse than that. I’m just using polite ones that are directed at women. And it’s it’s used as a really just an overall blanket for you have feelings and thoughts that maybe are not what they like. So you wanted to know though something really particular What was the question you asked me? Mmm hmm, why do we sometimes get?

Oh yeah, what? What are they cramps? Yeah,

you asked me, Why is it sometimes? Why is it painful? Why are periods considered painful? Why do people? Why do women do have cramps and pain with their reproductive cycles? And that’s a really good question. Because there’s also a big span, there’s a big difference between how every body reacts or responds to your period. So when I was about 1412 13, that’s when I first got my cycle started. And I had no cramping. So I had no issues at all. No pain, no cramping. I actually didn’t even know it was my period because it was so light. I didn’t even catch on. No, it was actually granny had to say to me, I think Auntie don’t even said I think you have your period. And it was just because they were, you know, mum, my mum was doing my laundry and she would notice my underwear. And it wasn’t that I was like, bleeding it was that I was having spotting or discoloration. So I did not have that normal experience that I think a lot of people have, or common experience a lot of people have where it’s like, oh my gosh, it just showed up. All right, thank goodness, I’m actually grateful that I wasn’t like in school or some. I think we could have an entire podcast episode about stories of women when they got their periods for the first time. And you have friends, I shove it in there. Your friends don’t name any names, but you’ve had friends who’ve just gotten their periods for the kind of the first time now. Right? And it’s, it can be really embarrassing. Yeah, yeah. And concerning all of those

things, and some of my friends are in school. And they’re not just homeschooled. So I like you

were if you got your period at school, it wouldn’t be such a big deal because you’re at home. Yeah, if you’re out, it might be right. Okay. Well, let’s answer your question about cramps. Why do some people have cramps and some people have literally debilitating pain. So your Auntie Auntie Don, who does? She comes on once a month with us on the podcast, and we do what your mama didn’t tell you. So if you haven’t heard those episodes, you’re gonna want to listen in because she shared a bit about what her experience was like. She used to miss school every month, when she’d have her period. So it was something that you really want to make sure you understand why your body responds the way it does on a monthly basis. But if you’re having discoveries, you’re having that level of pain to find out why. But there’s challenges involved in that. So here’s the basic answer for this. You know how babies come out. You know about labor, you know about contractions, you actually asked me originally about contraction pain. That’s what’s happening. So your uterus, right? If we have our uterus like this, where the baby grows, if that baby doesn’t end up, if there’s no no egg that gets fertilized, and is implanted inside the lining of the uterus, that whole lining goes root. You didn’t need me this month. So I’m going to clean up in here, and it comes out. So your uterus is literally stripping away tissue. And when it does that, the muscles will contract a little bit, very, very gently. For some people, it’s not so gentle, right? But it will contract to help strip the lining out and help expel the line. And that’s why you bleed. It’s just your body cleaning up. So once a month, it preps that inside of your uterus to get ready for a baby. And if there’s no baby, there it goes. Didn’t need me this time. Let’s clean it up and get ready for next month. Right? Try again, girls. So that’s the idea why sometimes there’s just common, you know, discomfort, but there can be pretty intense pain, right, and discomfort and cramping. And that’s usually based on how we eat. So can you think of some things that might make cramping worse? Some foods? Something that we don’t have in our house? Oh, no. Dairy, dairy. Got it? Yeah. So you have a what? Why can’t you? Why can’t we have milk in our house? You have a dairy allergy, right? Yes. Yeah. So that’s something that we are very conscientious of because you can’t have dairy so we just don’t have it in our house. No, you know what I realized when you were a baby and we took dairy away, I noticed that my cycles got better. Oh, really. I had way less bloating. I had less cramping and I didn’t have it badly to begin with. But it was enough that it was not a pleasant first two days of my cycle. It went away to this day I’ve never had issues with it since no pain, no cramping so it

doesn’t mean I will hopefully hopefully here’s

the thing we know more now we know better we know that diet does affect that it does affect your cramping and your your discomfort during your period. We also know that being physically active and having you know being in good shape helps. Am I keeping you awake? Yes. So sorry.

That’s okay.

Okay, try to wake up I just said Here we go. Physical activity is important. Yeah. So what are some things that you do that help your body stay, fit,

stay fit, I go for walks, or runs? Well, I go for what do we

do every week, you guys do something each week,

oh, we, we go

to gymnastics and we

have our course.

So you take part in parkour, you do gymnastics, we do lots of walking outside, you’re physically active. That is another really key thing to keeping your cramping or discomfort during your period, at a minimum. Because if your body is really just tired out and not in decent condition, anything is going to be more enhanced, those feelings will be bigger, and you don’t want to feel that. And the other thing that you want to think about is just your activity level and your sleep and your rest and your stress during your period. It’s actually a really good time to hibernate a little bit. Just a tiny bit, sir, during the week of your period. If you book all these events, or maybe you know, you think I’m gonna go to my friend’s birthday party, and I’m gonna, you know, go to gymnastics three times this week, and I’m gonna go swimming, and I’m gonna, yeah, your body’s gonna say, Hold on, I’m working here, I’ve got stuff happening. So it is important that you watch your activity levels and give your body some rest, maybe in the days leading to your period. And then the first few days of your period, doesn’t mean you can’t work out if that’s what you love to do. But understand that that is a really good time to help your body just recoup and gather some energy. Because as soon as that period is over, you get a fresh burst of energy during your cycle. Right, it’s a really good time to be creative, and to think things that you want to do coming up. All right. So I want to know, at your age, I want you to tell me, what is what do you think would be, you know, things that you would need to have for your period products, things that you might want to have on hand, or as you’re getting close to that age that you’re going to have your period. So you don’t get caught maybe without having something handy. What are some things that I use that women use for their period patent under patent underwear? Yeah, so that’s, I think this is kind of cool. Because I did not grow up with this. I grew up with traditional pads and tampons as the only option. And now we’re raising girls and you guys have way more options. She know that way back when the only option were like underwear with like, strips of cloth added into them or rights out of them. In other parts of other countries. These girls do not have pads don’t have anything to help them with their periods. They just use ripped up pieces of fabric in their undies. They have Yeah, they just make these a towel. Yeah, not great, right. It’s one of the reasons we work with healing hands with these four girls. It’s a great organization that helps teach girls about their cycles and gives them proper washable period underwear. So we use I use funny and you have them to one you have the everyday Andy’s we use Nick’s Sosa’s. I don’t make anything by saying that. Nick’s Where is amazing. That’s one of our favorites. I’ve talked about that before. We use Nick’s because they’re simple, they’re comfortable. They’re washable, they’re absorbable. And you’re about wearing bulky pads and not using chemicals. Right? So you’re very lucky that you have that option when it comes up. And then another great idea, this is actually something that when we were having the conversation with Auntie John, on our episode, she talked about having a period package ready, oh for say you or Evelina or whatever your cousin who are coming to that age where it’s like, you can just keep it tucked away in a little Ziploc or in a in the car. If you’re out. And it has a change of undies, that’s smart change pants, and some pads and you know, or a pair of necks, whatever, she should make those? Well, no, but that’s you could just put it together. You don’t even have to do it yourself. Right. So I’m gonna give you that as homework at some point in the next few months to put together your own little period kit. Not yet. Okay, not yet. The next three months, you could put it together. But that’s the cool thing is I mean, the reality is we don’t know when that’s going to happen. So it’s good to be prepared. It’s good to have it in their backpack, maybe if they’re at school, and so they don’t feel like they might get caught in a situation where they’re uncomfortable. Okay, next one. How old do you think you’ll be? When you get your period? You think 12 Maybe? Yeah, I don’t know. We don’t know. Do we know. So we’re noticing because of the like influx of hormones that are happening in our society and our foods. Everything is hormone laden, and we’re eating pretty terrible and in many cases, we’re doing pretty good. You guys are doing pretty good. My my kiddos are awesome with their eating. Um, I can’t I’m very proud of how you guys eat, but it is a concern because unless you’re paying attention to hormone meats and animal products that have hormones added, it’s just a given, it’s going to be in their food. So you do need to pay some attention to that because it is making a change and how early girls are getting their periods. They’re getting them earlier and earlier. So it’s not uncommon even at nine to get your period. Which No.

Could you imagine? Annoying? Yeah. So I mean, I would love to ask this question to any of our listeners, if you heard it started your period at 910 11. What age what age did you start your period at, because it is pretty common to start at around 12 1314, somewhere in there, for girls that are you know, exceptionally thin, hot, you know, heavily athletic and training, they will usually go later with their period. For girls who are a little more have more weight on them or not quite as you know, maybe has as a physically healthy and fit at this point in their lives, they may start a little earlier if their diets are not that great. So keep that in mind that our energy that goes into our fitness that goes into our eating that goes into all of that also has an effect on the hormones in our body, too. So we’ve talked a lot about hormones. Yes, that’s my next question. I want you to tell me about hormones. What do you think happens with our hormones during our period or before our period?

Or, or period?

So let’s say let’s say if you’re supposed to have your period on Friday, it typically was going to start on that date, every month, on the third week of the month. What do you think it’s like the days before with your hormones?

They’re reforming?

Don’t know, that’s okay. You don’t need to know. I was just curious if you had any ideas, but what’s going on in your body with your hormones? What are hormones? Good question, right. And this is the thing you learned about them. Pertaining to pregnancy. You’ve heard some stuff. But here’s the thing, what are hormones? What is the whole point? Why do we hear about this? Why is it literally rule our lives women as through much of our life? So hormones, you have hormones from the time you’re born? Yeah. And you’re those hormones that are happening in your body are a chemical interaction in your body, that dictates so many things in your reproductive parts of your body. So your uterus, your periods, your breast development, all of that puberty, puberty, whoo, there’s a big one right? here already. So as you’re heading into that, those stages, your hormones are going to have to grow to keep up with you. Right, so your hormones are going to shift. And as we lead into periods, your hormones are also going to shift because that’s a hormone reaction that happens in our uterus. Right, yeah, you’ve got the right idea before me. For me, I like it’s a good word before me is a good word. So when your hormones are needing to shift when your hormones are growing with you, there are days when you might feel like you’re a little bit more grumpy, or on edge or anxious is another one. And touchy. Right? Has there been days where I’m like, Dude, you are like, Yes, a little on edge today is kind of what I say. Because I know how that feels. I know the feeling of like, everything sets you off right? Now. You get some days, some days, I mean, your brothers go through the same thing. They have days where they their hormones are setting them off. It’s not just a girl thing. So that’s what I want to change that conversation around. Boys have hormones, men have hormones, it’s all we all have them. So it’s more about recognizing how you respond to them and understanding your body so that you know, when you do need a little bit of space, right? Like, maybe we do need to take a break, maybe you do need some room to do your own thing at that time. So those days leading up to you when your period starts. You might need a little space you might need people to Yeah, and it’s okay to say that it’s okay to say hey, listen, I’m kind of not feeling myself today. I would like a little break or a little space. I’m just going to work on I’m gonna put my headphones on and I’m going to work on my you know, my craft activity today, I

draw and put my headphones on.

Good. That was my next question. So what are some of those things we can do or you can do when you feel those emotions or you feel that chemical interaction going on in your body, which we just call emotions, but it is hormone based. So what are some things you can do to help you help you kind of get through that easily?

I listen to music Well, other drawing coloring or like doing craps. So then like, I can’t hear anything around me sometimes. And it just helps me a little bit because sometimes I like not hearing anything but my thoughts. So and then Sometimes I don’t wear my headphones. And I just think

that’s a good point. Because sometimes we don’t take time to think right to pause. And I think that’s really important. I think. I think that’s important that we encourage you guys and our kids to, at any age to really take time to be with your thoughts. It’s so easy to just tune it out, right and go on to the next thing. Yeah, you guys do that? You guys did that in one thing. I like you guys do that in for school?

Yes. Oh, shoot. I love that. So we actually have sit spots, that sometimes they give us a question. And then we go out in nature. And we think about the answer to that question. And all you hear around you, is like birds chirping and stuff. And they say to all be quiet. And like, think, listen, and think. And then sometimes they give us a little thing of nature. So say like a leaf. And they give it to us and say like, what was one thing you noticed about this leaf? Oh,

it’s fun. I think that’s brilliant. How many kids do we think would be like, Oh, I’m all over that we think no, right? But when you guys are put in that situation where you have the opportunity to feel that peacefulness I think that’s such a beautiful thing to learn. And as a woman, as a girl at any even boys. But when we’re talking about our cycles, we’re talking about hormones, we’re talking about taking control of that and understanding our bodies. Taking some self care time to just be either outside. We love being outside in the forest,

right dancing around our fireplace,

dancing in the living room, that’s fine, putting on music and dancing. Anything that can relieve some of that, that, you know, the emotional buildup that happens with hormones is fantastic. But taking some time to learn that and to teach that to our girls and to our kids to teach them the beauty of that self care. And that peacefulness and yeah, just respecting what’s happening with our bodies, listening to your body. Right? That’s really key. Our body talks to us for a reason. Yeah. I love it. Any other questions that you have? Why? Why did we get periods? Very good question we kind of talked about at the very beginning when we talked about the uterus for creating a lining for the baby. So I like to describe it. I remember I describe it to your little brother who’s seven. So he gets a different level of information. And you always keep it age appropriate. Right? When you’re talking with your kids, when they have the questions, I answered their level of what they’re satisfied with. And if you guys aren’t satisfied with the answer, I know you always asked more, you’ll say What’s this? What What do you mean by that? Whereas with Ashton, you just give him a really basic answer. He’s happy. He doesn’t want to know more. Right? I need to know more. You always asked me any questions. That’s why I love having you chat with us. So um, when we talked about that I told Ashton that when you have that uterus, it’s like a nest. Right. So it’s like a birdie getting a nest ready, your uterus every month will start to build up little like blankets Inside the nest. That’s how I explained. So you picture it that way. And as that’s happening inside, and you’re right here under your belly button, download your uterus, it’s building up a lining, it’s like lining it with blankets. And that’s getting ready for a fertilized egg that you have in your body. You have eggs in your body, right? And when the eggs for lies from the male sperm, then you do Oh, you have eggs that are bringing your body while you’re still inside me. Oh, man, amazing. So when that’s happening, that egg, if it is fertilized by the daddy sperm that it can stick into those little blankets and get cozy. And that’s where the baby starts to grow. Right. So that’s, that’s what what we went through last summer, right? We had a baby in there that in I was pregnant, and we had a little egg that had started to grow. And it was in that cozy little lining, and then something didn’t work right, and the lining started to come out. So when the blanket starts to ball up and start to pull away, it can’t grow anymore. So it’ll all start to strip out and come out. And that’s why we lost a baby last summer. But if things work properly, baby stays there, it gets nice and cozy and gets bigger and grows and grows and grows. Cool, right? It grows the placenta and all those other parts. But if there’s no egg that travels down into that part of your uterus, it’ll just come up with the lining the egg just comes on out along with it because there was nothing and no reason for it to stay in your uterus and stay planted into that cozy spot to help describe it. Okay,

it’s actually a really good way of describing.

I like the thought of that as opposed to making it sound like a terrible thing. That’s not your body is honestly doing its job and it’s doing a really beautiful job of prepping the environment to sustain life. And if that isn’t an option, then it doesn’t it goes okay. No problem. Let’s Clean up the blanket for it. Let’s put it all back, you know, backwards. So that’s when you start to bleed. Now, one thing that a lot of I know I didn’t know in the beginning was how long do periods last? How long? Do you know how many days on average they last a week? Again, some women who have very heavy bleeding and just don’t have a healthy regular cycle can bleed for a week. Typically, it’s three to four days at the most. So for Yeah, three to four days.

No, or a week?

Not usually. So not usually? That’s a good question. So three to four days is pretty average. And if you go beyond that, and if it’s really heavy, there could be issues at hand, right? There could be things like engine endometriosis, where there’s too much lining growing, or there’s growths that are happening. There can be PCOS, which is polycystic, meaning, their cysts, there’s growth happening on the ovaries, or on parts of the uterus. So it could be very painful, and it can make heavy periods. Those are all treatable, though. That’s the beauty of that is there is help for that. And we obviously in our family love to use natural stuff to work with our reproductive organs, we have an amazing oil blend that we use, don’t we remember what that one’s called, that we love putting that I use all the time for my period. I don’t remember the name of it. It was really a blend we use called Clary calm. And it’s the clearest agent. And it’s incredibly soothing during your periods. Fantastic for hormone balancing, and just for helping with any discomfort. But yeah, that’s pretty average, three to four days. And your first day or two is usually heavier.

I think worry about this

in the next few days.

Um, yeah, I’m trying to think if there’s anything else that we haven’t already talked about, anything you can think of. Now’s your time. Any other questions? That give you a pretty good description of what periods are all about? Yeah.

So I think the important thing is, at this point, is keeping your body healthy, right, staying active. And being prepared for what it’s going to start to do. Because once you have, oh, this is an important point. Once you have your periods, once your period starts and your cycle starts becoming regular, that’s how you can get pregnant. So girls aged know this. That is the whole point your body is maturing, and your reproductive organs are maturing to the place where they could grow a baby. Now, technically, do we want people growing babies at 12? And 13? No, no, because you really are not developed? And you know enough to safely do that. I mean, people have, that’s not what you want to be spending your life doing at 12 or 13. Yeah. So it’s really important to have these conversations because there are little girls at 1112 and 13, who did not know how babies come to be and did not know that you know how their cycles worked and did not know that they could potentially get pregnant. Yeah, so please have these conversations with your kids when they’re around these ages. It is really important to understand how babies are made. And how you get pregnant, how you don’t get pregnant, not just with girls. That’s right. Boys need to understand this as well. And I think the conversation is important with boys too, because we want them to grow up into men who respect and understand what women go through every month. Yes to create life. Right? Yeah, because we got a freakin amazing superpower. I

think Heck, yeah.

Humans, right. Yeah, we grow humans. I think that’s a pretty phenomenal superpower. That is pretty

phenomenal. Yeah.

And that’s it for say, Oh, that was informative for you. Yeah. Okay. Well, you know, if you have any other questions, okay, where to find me. Okay. I’m usually just down the hall. Make sure you like and subscribe. Leave us some feedback. We love to hear your reviews and your feedback in our any of our podcast areas, so on YouTube, or on our website or on the podcast platforms, like Apple and all those fun ones. You can follow along for now. And say bye.

Goodbye. Oh, maybe see you next time.