So there I was, squatting over the hand-held mirror, that I usually use to see the back of my head when I do my hair, sweating, trying to figure out how the hell this damn thing works. It can't be this complicated, I angrily mumble to myself. I'm familiar with these parts, I reassure myself, as I'm huddled in a crouching-tiger, hidden-vagina pose, with a silicone cup in one hand and a book of directions in the other. "Take a comfortable position: standing, sitting on the toilet, or squatting. Relax your vagina muscles. Insert the Diva Cup, aiming it horizontally towards your tailbone. Grip the base of the cup and rotate until you hear a suction sound..." #LikeImADamnPlunger
I can't deal with this right now. I hear my phone chime from the other room. I know it's my best friend, checking in to see if I was able to figure it out. I open the bathroom drawer and unwrap a trusty Tampax tampon, do the thing, wash my hands and text her back: I had to take a break. But I'm gonna try again tonight after Yoga and a shot of vodka.
G-d dammit am I the only independent, self-sufficient, menstruating modern women who cannot figure out how to use the Diva Cup?!
Here's the thing, I love my period. As long as I'm not in India or staying at a friend's house or doing Yoga or required to talk to anyone or eat at a buffet or horny or doing anything remotely physical, I really don't mind menstruating. The only time I didn't enjoy my cycle was when I was eleven, twelve, thirteen and fourteen; the years of the pad. Wings or no wings, I'd always come home with ruined underwear, stained Board Shorts/Skorts and soiled dignity. In high school, when I switched to tampons, and no longer needed to wear a diaper (with wings), life seemed better and I felt more grown up...if by grown up that meant that I'd be allowed to carry a purse full of tampons and sprint to the bathroom every 45 minutes on days 2 & 3 of my period, during school.
In any case, as a twenty-nine year old grown-ass women, I've considered myself to be an expert of my own body, in control of my flow and have really nailed it when it comes to tampons. But none of that matters now, because as it turns out, tampons are so last month and the Diva Cup is in. (Well, it seemed to be in everyone except me.)
To anyone who has not yet tried the Diva Cup and is curious about it, it is a small latex-free, BPA-free silicone cup that is designed to "catch" the contents of your uterus and is held in place for up to 12 hours at which point it is removed, rinsed off and re-inserted. The process is repeated for the duration of your period. (Kinda gives "rinse & repeat a WHOLE new meaning.)After your cycle comes to an end, you simply boil the Diva Cup, store it in its drawstring carrying case and tuck it away, until next time. Since it is reusable, it is better for the environment and saves a lot of money on sanitary products.
Here are some suggestions and things I've discovered in the last 24 hours about the cup, my vagina, and how, after a yoga class, a shot of vodka and encouraging affirmations, I don't see myself ever going back to tampons...
1) BUY THE CORRECT SIZE- There are two sizes of the Diva Cup; size 1 & size 2. Size 1 is for women under the age of 30 whom have never given birth. Without reading the box, I accidentally bought Size 2 at first, because I thought the size had to do with flow. But. It doesn't. So I had to go back the next day and buy the Size 1. But at least I'll have the other size for next year or after I have babies, when my vagina is merely a patchwork of what it used to be.
2) ONCE ITS INSERTED CORRECTLY, DON'T MESS WITH IT for least 8 hours. As long as there are no leaks, only take it out in the morning, afternoon and before bed to wash it and re-insert it.
3) TELL EVERYONE YOU KNOW about the Diva Cup. Tell the cashier at Whole Foods, tell your neighbors, talk about it with your friends. Go into detail. Laugh about it. It's funny! The best thing about the Diva Cup, other than the fact you can 'Set it and forget it", is that there's NO smell! No longer do my bathroom visits smell like I chopped up a family member into little bits and then sprinkled those bits over a bed of Romain lettuce, topped it with ranch, let it sit for 4 days and then served it to another family member. I forget where I was going with that...
WARNING: If you are not a Gynecologist by profession, you will be one, by trade, after using this product. The Diva Cup is not for the faint of heart...or the faint. You'll get to know yourself in a way you haven't before, so be sure to take yourself to dinner after your first Diva Cup experience.
That's really all I have to say about the Diva Cup, friends. If you need me, I'll be wandering the aisles of Whole Foods & Target wearing my Diva Cup with confidence, while subtly humming my new parody, "Knock Knock Knockin' on Cervix Door". Karaoke anyone?