‘Now society is quiet because of corona, I’d like to encourage everyone: take this time to menstruate. Not literally, but take it as inspiration. Have a rest, reflect on life, our society and the planet. What do we keep and what do we leave behind?’ A guest blog by Dutch designer Nora Jongen.
– BY NORA JONGEN –
Three years ago I started to track my menstrual cycle. I learned about this biological process in my body and started to adapt my daily activities to it. In this way I collaborate with my body, instead of working against it.
At the moment that the corona quarantaine started, I menstruated and taking rest was suspiciously easy. Normally I feel upcoming motivation around day 5 of my cycle, but this time I didn’t. At day 15 my basal body temperature went up, a sign that progesteron levels increase and ovulation has happened. However, I still didn’t feel the focus, motivation and energy that I’m used to feel in the first phase of my cycle.
I started to worry, because this active, social part of the cycle stays the most valued part. In conversations with other women who track their cycle it turned out that I’m not the only one with a cycle of quietness and individuality.
Now I understand: it’s like the world is menstruating. As women we live with a monthly cycle of hormones. We live in four seasons and have a day and night rhythm consisting of 24 hours. How can we expect that society runs on the same high tempo 24 hours a day, 365 days a year?
In the cycle of a woman, menstruation offers her a moment turn inward. Winter is to withdraw yourself at home and stay warm, and the night is to sleep. These three different ways of inactivity create the opportunity to reflect, to support a new beginning; spring, the morning and the pre-ovulation.
Now that society is quiet in many areas, I’d like to encourage everyone: take this time to menstruate. Not literally, but take it as inspiration. Have some rest, reflect on life, reflect on our society and on the planet. What do we keep and what do we leave behind? This way we can start a new cycle in a while, rested and with new values. Supporting ourselves to not immediately fall back into our old patterns.
Women are experienced in this cyclic movements. Every month, a woman’s menstruation reminds her of the opportunity to turn inward. Let’s treat the world cyclic. As she is.
About the autor
Designer Nora Jongen (1996) is fascinated by cycles. In her projects she examines both the rhythm of time and the rhythm of the menstrual cycle. She graduated from the Design Academy Eindhoven with the project Cyclical Life: four workspaces that support the qualities of the different phases of the menstrual cycle. She is now also a consultant for the Sensiplan fertility awareness method and is committed to disseminating knowledge about the menstrual cycle. Follow her on Instagram via @Saiklik.
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