The Monthly - Erika Eileen

Finally, a candid conversation about periods. We get it. Periods are personal. Choosing empowerment over embarrassment, we’re here to give a real-life lesson on menstrual cycles and our bodies.  And what better way to do that than from hearing stories about periods from our colleagues, friends and people we have met on this incredible journey. So join us as we talk about- yep, you guessed it - periods. #leaveyourstain

Who are you (we’d love to get to know you!) and what are your preferred pronouns?

Hi!  I go by Erika Eileen, SHE/HER.  I am 27 from Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  I am a confidence and sex coach, and run my own consulting business online.  I help folks feel more confident in all areas of life, and help people connect to their sexuality as a tool to gaining self confidence.  I love latin music, skateboarding, and naps! 

Erika Arff

How did you first learn about periods?   

I think it was that "american girl" book, "All About Me".  I also got my period like... 10 minutes before a ballet class and I remember my mom just giving me a tampon and pad and was like "ok throw this on and we will talk about it later", but I don't really recall a ton of talking (no shame on mum!).  Even to this day, I often find myself saying "WHY DIDN'T I KNOW THIS?!?!"   
 

Do you remember your first period conversation? Who was it with and what was that like?

I don't remember the first conversation but I recall the first time I told my friends and there was this weird vibe of competition between us, almost a divide.  Between the girls who had gotten it, and the other friends who hadn't.
 

When did you get your first period?

Grade 6, 5 minutes before my ballet class! 
 

How was it? What happened?

It was very fast because of it being so close to my dance class!  I remember my mom wanting to celebrate with champagne but I didn't get the type at all ahha! 
 

Do you try to take extra care of yourself while on your period? If so, how?

I do and I don't.  I have been working really hard at normalizing my cycle for myself and not allowing it to control everything like it used to.  Before, I would find myself almost acting a certain way and allowing myself to almost NOT care because it was like "oh well whatever I'M ON MY PERIOD WHO CARES" so how I just try and see those days as all my other days (which, I am always doing my best each day to show my body and self love!).
 

What are your favourite period products?

NIXIT (DUH!), my heating pad, my pregnancy aka cuddle pillow, chocolate covered almonds, and my favourite vibrator.
 

Is there anything else about your period experiences you want to share?

I have had a really unique experience with my cycle being a Type 1 Diabetic.  My body is always changing and so with that, my cycles were always something to navigate while also navigating an ever changing chronic illness!

Have the last challenging months affected your period and if so, how did you best navigate?

Not really!  I have been working from home since last summer so the transition wasn't too different for me!  The stress levels made my periods a little bit lighter, but that was about it! 

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