By Amanda Lopez

Illustration by Deron Cohen

I truly believe that woman’s penance for fruit-sampling in the Garden of Eden is the curse of menstruation. I loathed my monthly reminder of possessing two X chromosomes pre-SCI, and it’s even more complicated as a T8 para.

Subscribing to the school of silver lining, I very much enjoyed the four months post-injury of menses-free spinal shock. For that, life’s little joke on me is my sole remaining sensation of hard-core cramps. Since legalization of marijuana for treatment of PMS is unlikely, I get by with a product I’ve found that makes managing my period easier-the Instead Softcup.

The Softcup resembles a diaphragm, is made of nontoxic and nonlatex materials, and can hold twice as much flow as a pad or tampon-allowing you to wear it twice as long. Even on medium to heavy flow days, it can be worn up to 12 hours. Ah, bliss!

When first introduced to the Softcup, I found the idea of collecting menstrual flow for 12 hours a little disgusting and thought someone with a complete SCI-no