Darah: Hers


Darah is Indonesian for "Blood".
The word darah is very close to Dara, Indonesian for Maiden.
Arabic for "to circle" دارَ , or the noun "circle" دائرة.

When a woman tells me that she's afraid of blood, I know that she's either pulling an immature trick to look cute, or that she's lying.

"Why do you bleed so much, mama?"

Still, when my seven-years old daughter asked, I took my breath. And then I took another. I've prepared my response long before she was born. Yet the gravity of this seemingly-casual conversation could affect the way she looks at her body, for the rest of her life.

"It's a big girl's secret," I took her to my lap, mostly comforting myself from the heartbreaking realization that my little girl is a notch closer to womanhood, just by knowing this.

"You know there's a room in a mother's body where a baby grows? Now, when a woman is pregnant, she shares her food with her baby from the blood that flows into this room, her womb,

"When a woman is old enough to carry a child, her womb begins to produce the food, even if it's an absent child, just in case. Since there's no one to eat the baby food prepared inside of her, it goes bad and yucky,

"That's why big girls bleed; her is body cleansing itself from spoiled baby food."

"Man's shell is woman because it is by her that he comes into the world; and woman's shell is woman because she is born of woman. One cannot enumerate the shells of all the things that this world produces."

Anonymous - Referring to the Polynesian belief that all reality reflects the shell of the primal matrix.
That was a personal recollection. A memory of how my mother explained the bloody cycle in concise and concrete terms. It's how I explained to my brothers and any man who'd bother to ask.

Never failing to enjoy the look of wonder on their faces when a woman's body mounts a bit higher on their esteem.
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