We are definitely the ones people are talking about when they say girls rule.
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My first period made its debut in July, 1984. I was twelve, in bed after I just got back from doing my paper route, trying to go back to sleep. I was having the worst cramps. I had them all summer, but that morning was the worst. Before that morning, I counted out loud when I had them, trying to distract myself. One two three… by ten the cramps would be gone. That morning the cramps had no end. Twenty, thirty, forty, fifty. Tears formed in my eyes. God, make it stop, please!
Then I felt this whoosh between my legs. The cramps drifted away from my body, like a boat leaving the port. I waved good-bye to them and I fell asleep.
That summer Mom was temping, so some days she had off. My younger brother Patrick was at day camp so we watched the soaps, and then hit the bargain matinees if we had money. We were watching Guiding Light as Reva danced around in her slip, snapping her fingers, declaring herself the Slut of Springfield. I had to go to pee. I was licking a Popsicle, the chocolate melting all over my hands.