Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Menstruation Celebration! Win a Red Goddess Celebration Box!

As promised in yesterday's post, my Q&A with Marianne Impal is below. Marianne is the creative genius behind Red Goddess Celebration Boxes for girls.

I first learned about these boxes on The Girl Revolution and I loved the idea so much that I had to share. So many girls approach the arrival of their first periods with feelings of dread. These beautiful boxes are a way to turn that special time into something to cherish rather than fear.

Check out Marianne's interview and then find out how you can win a Celebration Box of your own!


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ME: The Celebration Box is such a beautiful sentiment. What gave you the idea to start creating them?


MI: Thank you! The idea came about after reading the best selling novel “The Red Tent”. Even though the Red Tent was not the primary focus of the book, there was definitely an emphasis where girls looked forward to becoming women. Women nurtured each other and the sisterhood shared between these women was very refreshing to feel. I knew instantly I wanted to recreate this ritual for my daughters, so that their transformation into womanhood would be a positive experience for them.

I told everyone I knew who had daughters this idea, but it wasn’t until years later when a good friend tried this concept with her own daughter. She said it was a beautiful bonding experience and she thanked me for it. I realized that telling people by word of mouth wasn’t enough… I wanted all girls to feel this special. It’s been my goal ever since to help change the perception of what girls think womanhood is all about. I feel it’s up to us women who have already been there to help honor these girls going through this journey in today’s world and acknowledge their physical, hormonal and emotional changes with respect and celebration and not silence.

ME: The items inside of the boxes are so unique, and they really have a warm almost soothing quality about them. How did you go about choosing them?

MI: My first thoughts on envisioning this celebration box, was that it be a treasure passed down from woman to woman. What I would want my daughters to know or things I wanted to share with them now that they were officially women. Because "The Red Tent" focused on women nurturing each other by rubbing one another’s legs and feet, I wanted to take this bit of ritual and modernize it for today’s young girl.

With my back ground in Shiatsu Acupressure, various bodywork modalities and yoga, I knew that there were ways to naturally draw energy away from cramps. Combining those rituals with these experiences, I created bath and body products exclusive to Red Goddess. I then went on to talk with other moms about their experiences getting their first period… what they would have wished went differently, or what products would have been helpful, had they known. We are always open to new ideas.

ME: Have you gotten lots of feedback from people who have bought boxes? Are there any special celebration stories that stand out?

MI: Yes, the feedback has been amazing! My main concern was getting feedback from the girls as well as the parents and so far so good! The great thing about The Red Goddess Celebration Box is that it doesn’t have to be given just to a daughter. We’ve seen many cases, where the gift is given from an Aunt, Godmother, Grandmother and even single Dads.

It’s hard to choose which story stands out the most, but I guess I would have to say when a woman called me with concern about her 12-year-old granddaughter, who didn’t want anything to do with becoming a woman. She didn’t want to discuss it and definitely didn’t want to know anything about getting her period. The grandmother wanted to know my thoughts on giving this box to her granddaughter. I explained that it was perfectly normal for a girl her age to not want to discuss the very major changes going on with her body.

The great part about giving this box is that it’s a gift with a HUGE message behind it… that sometimes the girls don’t even realize. Giving and talking about the box, puts the focus on this beautiful treasure and AWAY from her.

A few weeks later I heard back from the Grandmother, thanking me. She decided to tease her granddaughter with the box, letting her take a peek inside and know that this was something she was going to pass down to her when her time came. She said it completely changed her granddaughter's mind, piqued her interest and now [the granddaughter] can’t wait for her day of womanhood to come!

ME: OK, I divulged my first period experience in yesterday's post, (it's SO un-Celebration Box-like). In the spirit of menstrual-unity…can you tell us about yours?

MI: I’m fortunate that my experience getting my first period was a positive one. I was a late bloomer and didn’t get mine till a good 14 years of age and by then ALL my friends had their period and I thought something was wrong with me. Of course everyone kept telling me I didn’t want to get it, but just to be normal, I did want it.

I remember waking up late on a Saturday when no one was home and feeling very crampy. I thought to myself, “Could I have gotten it? Nah, I’ll never get it.” But, then I checked and saw that it was true. I remember my legs trembling with fear. Even though I thought was prepared, I wasn’t.

My parents came home at that perfect time. When I told my mom, she flew her arms up in the air with a huge smile from ear to ear and gave me the biggest hug. She congratulated me and then showed me what to do. She must have told my big sister and my aunts because everyone pulled me aside to congratulate me when they saw me. I felt like I was part of “their world”.
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Win a Red Goddess Celebration Box!


Enter to win by leaving me a comment. You'll get double entries if you share the story of your first period. (Hey, I shared mine!)

Contest will end at midnight on April 15th. Winners will be choosen by Random.org


41 comments:

Tiffani said...

I would love to win!! I could save it for my girls.
tifg45@excite.com

Tiffani said...

My first period was in the 9th grade. late compared to all of my friends. It wasn't a messy affair. I think I was at home when it started. My mom helped me out a lot. Love ya mom.
tifg45@excite.com

Cinderelish said...

Nice idea.

Whimsical Creations said...

Thanks for the chance to win! This would be great to give to my neice...perfect age for this!

Tj and Amy said...

this is adorable. would love for my daughter to have it. amsbolda@hotmail.coom

Liza said...

What a beautiful idea! I would love it for one of my girls! glickgirls@gmail.com

Abby said...

Okay my first period. At my dad's company Christmas party I went to the bathroom and huh that doesn't look right. I whispered in my mom's ear what I thought had happened. She smacked her head and said GREAT timing...go use some toilet paper until we get home.

ajcmeyer At go DOT com

Thumperdd said...

Lovely box!

I can't remember anything special about my day other than I was 9 and started the same year as my 12 year old sis. I didn't even tell my mom until 3 months later, because I thought it was no big deal. Actually, she had to ask what was happening to all of the pads...that's the only reason I mentioned it!

nfmgirl said...

Sounds like a fascinating idea! Please count me in. Thank you!

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

nfmgirl said...

My first was when I was 12. I was on summer vacation with my Dad. My Mom suspected it was getting about that time, so she had sent me with some "supplies", just in case. Sure enough, I started. Since I had "supplies", I didn't tell anyone for three days until the supplies ran out. Then I had to finally tell my step-mother.

Chelsey said...

This sounds great. I'd love to win for my daughter. Thanks for the giveaway. mybabyappleseed(at)yahoo(dot)ca

Chelsey said...

My first period came right before my family left on a train trip. I remember being on the toilet once when the train stopped at a station. I just waited and waited for what seemed like ages because I had heard when you flushed everything ended up on the tracks... mybabyappleseed(at)yahoo(dot)ca

Katherine said...

I got my first period in 7th grade, when I was wearing white shorts and trying to recruit people to be in my play. A boy I barely knew said, "I think you sat in something."

oona. said...

I got my period in 7th grade, in science class and had to tie a sweatshirt around my waist, I was truly mortified!

Thanks! foxsquirrelrabbit at gmail dot com

noreen said...

I was almost 13 (one month away) and we were about to leave for a long weekend at a lake. My mom was cool but we had to tell my dad so we could stop at the store and he was annoyed. He wouldn't stop long enough for me to use the bathroom at the store so I had sit on toilet paper for the 2 hour drive. At least it wasn't as bad as my cousins. We were at camp, she had just turned 9. We were using outhouses and told me there was blood when she peed. At eight it did not dawn on me what was going on. She thought she was dying. I got her to talk to the camp counsler.
I plan on making my two daughters' a better experience.

jennifer r said...

This is such a great prize... thank you for the chance to win.

Outrun The Halfling said...

Wow, I would absolutely love to win this. My first period was probably one of the oddest moments in my life. I still remember waking up that morning in February when I was in 6th grade to go do my morning routine and seeing the blood in the toilet after going to the bathroom. For some reason I wasn't surprised at all, and just went down cooly to my mom to ask her for a pad. Unfortunately, my mom was such a talker and had to go around telling family and friends of family that I finally got my period :p


arowette(a)hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

My daughter is approaching the time when she'll need that box. What a caring and creative idea!
Zoe0825@verizon.net

Anonymous said...

Okay here goes: picture it 1975, Sicily (just kidding!) Actually it was 1975 in a Catholic school and the only thing the nun said when I came back was," Get ready for a test".

DEBIJOT said...

Would love to win. This is great. Thanks.

DEBIJOT said...

Mine was no big deal, as Mom had already explained everything to me and had supplies on hand. Thank goodness it happened at home.

kat c. said...

I agree, this is such a clever idea

katch05 at gmail dot com

Holly said...

What a great idea. I can't remember my first period. I was in 8th grade, I believe. I was prepared and we had all the necessary stuff. So, it obviously wasn't incredibly memorable. I suppose that's good.

LeNesha said...

What a great product! My daughter is 11 and we've had our talks, she's asked questions, and now, we're just waiting :-). This would be a fabulous welcome to womanhood gift. Thank you,
LeNesha
mail at mybusinessadventures.com

LeNesha said...

My first period: My mom had talked with me earlier so luckily I was mentally and physically prepared. I was either 12 or 13 when my period first arrived. I don't have any major memories of it, which must mean that it was uneventful w/no embarrassing moments.
LeNesha
mail at mybusinessadventures.com

LeNesha said...

Told the story of my first period, does this comment count as my double entry?
LeNesha
mail at mybusinessadventures.com

Princessliak said...

I would love to send this to my friend who is nervously awaiting her daughter's first day!

DawnS said...

This is such a great giveaway, I would love to have this for my daughter.

DawnS said...

We were staying at a cabin when I had my first peiord at the age of 12. I knew about it only because of what I had learned at school. My mom had never mentioned it but I knew immediately what it was. I was embarassed to tell my mom because we never talked about these things!

tracey said...

i'll never forget...i was almost 13 and we had just moved cross-country. i was horrified and cried for days, i did not want this and hated it...i now believe that this reaction led to a lifetime of extreme pms & painful periods. it wasn't until i turned 40 that i came to terms with my womanhood and the pms & pain eased off. my daughter is 10 and i don't want her to have the same reaction as me...i would love for her to embrace it and be proud...what a wonderful idea this red goddess celebration box is!

Shawna Bates said...

I would love to win this!!!!!!

My period story was horrific and one I will never forget!!!
I was at my grandma's and she didn't have her period anymore and 3 of my uncles lived with her.
So when I started my period I tried to cover it up by stuffing toilet paper in my underware. Well I kept bleeding thorugh my clothes, finaly my Grandma asked me what was going on, did I fall down? Was I cut?? Finally I just broke down and told her I started my period. SHe then gave me money and had me walk over to the town GAS STATION and buy maxi pads!! I was mortified and the cashier was a MAN!!!!!! Talk about the worst thing in the world ever!!!! See don't you think I should win lol..

Perseus said...

Beautiful idea! We women need to encourage our fledglings to rejoice in the wisdom and power of their bodies and not to fear or dread the start of their periods.

My "First Period Story": My mom and my aunt had both sent away for some kit from Kotex when my cousin and I were 10. I remember being curious, but embarrassed about it all, but I was definitely prepared. When the "big day" arrived, I was 11 yrs old and in the 6th grade.It was just an average school day--woke up feeling queazy, went to the bathroom and--voila! I remember my mom giving me a hug, asking me if I felt okay and then showing me what to do. This was in 1969, before the "invention" of the "ultra thin" stick on pads with wings and it seems to me that there was a bit of an "art" to tying the tails of those thick "surfboards" to the belts we had to use back then! haha.

lace said...

This would be a great gift to give to my friends daughter.

CJ'SMOMMY*KIMBERLY said...

I would love to give this to my niece.

CJ'SMOMMY*KIMBERLY said...

My first period was in 5th grade.I was 10.My mom scared the life out of me telling me how bad it was and how bad it would hurt.She had a hysterectomy by the time I started.Sympathy didn't exist in our house with mom ,dad and two brothers.I just suffered alone.lol

Cheryl said...

Wow this would be great for my daughter.

webowes at hotmail dot com

Cheryl said...

Let's see if I can remember. I was mortified to tell my mother b/c in my family it was very hush hush. As a matter of fact months had gone by before she found out. So I don't remember the first time but I do remember her finding the wrapper from a pad in the trash that day and coming to me and asking if I had startend my period. I've been trying to be more open adn talk to my daughter about it so that she won't be ashamed.

Darcy said...

I would love to save this for my daughter. How special!

Rose said...

this is such an awesome idea!
I remember mine it was horrible I was in school I think I was 12 and ended up with flu like symptoms it sucked and I have had flu like symptoms ever since and always missed school for a week during that time of the month because I was always sooooo sick.

Katrina said...

Looks great, thanks for the giveaway.

Felicia (aka Mommy B) said...

AND WE HAVE A WINNER!!
Whooooo!!! Winner has been notified.

Thanks so much to everyone for entering and regaling us with the drama of your first period. It may have been a messy, embarassing or just uncomfortable experience for some of us, but it's wonderful to know that we're making the effort to make the arriaval of old Aunt Flo better for our girls today.

And kudos again to Marianne Impal, creator of the Red Goddess Celebration Boxes for recognizing just how important it is to help our girls celebrate their changing bodies and blossoming womanhood, instead of dreading it.

We all rock!

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