Celebrate Everything

If you need to find a reason to celebrate something, I’m your gal. I can always find a silver lining, which can make me downright unbearable at times.

The Boobie Retirement Party

When my littlest scalawag was a baby, he decided one day that he was done nursing and never cared to see my boobies ever again. My boobies, however, did not get the message right away. As a matter of fact, they didn’t get the message for a really really long time, which led to some painful moments (I could have taken stock in a cabbage farm, if ya know what I mean.) I was sad that he was done nursing, because our nursing relationship had been so easy, whereas with the first baby nursing had been a trial from beginning to end.

I needed to make peace with the end of our nursing relationship. While in the thick of nursing, I had tried all kinds of ways to increase milk production: herbal teas, keeping hydrated, pumping. I also avoided anything that might possibly impede production.

Whether or not it is true, I had read that mint was not good for milk supply, so I avoided it like the plague, to the point of even forgoing mint chocolate chip ice cream which, let’s all agree, is an incredible sacrifice. I have also always loved to drink mint tea with (please don’t judge me) maple syrup. Our favorite Chinese restaurant gives sprigs of mint with their egg rolls and I always save them up to make myself a minty-maple-syrupy special treat. I call it my Mint Julep and I will hear no arguments to the contrary.

The much simpler life

In order to make peace with the end of the nursing season, I felt like I needed to do some kind of performative, official, season-ending act: I decided to celebrate the end of nursing. I went to the Tea Shop, leaving the boys with their indulgent father one afternoon. I ordered a mint tea. Before I took my first sip, I thanked my boobies for having been such amazing machines and nourishing two fantastic little scalawags. Then, I told them, (in hushed whispers when no one was around) “You’re done now. You can retire.”

I don’t know how much the mint tea really made a difference, but my heart was able to let go of the nursing season. My boobies got the message. Shortly thereafter, I had no more need for cabbage leaves.

Menopause Happy Hour

At the risk of putting her on blast for something she may not want widely known, I have friend who recently arrived at the end of the “is it pregnancy or is it menopause” gameshow that is the 365 day no-period-period prior to menopause.

As she arrived towards the date that would mark the end of her one year and the official start of menopause, I said, “Let’s have a Menopause Happy Hour to celebrate!” So we did.

We did it virtually, since it was during the pandemic lockdown, but nonetheless. We have a funny picture of the two of us giggling, a little tipsy, about our first periods and our really embarrassing, cringeworthy hormonal moments over the years.

The Precedent

Many many moons ago I read a book called The Red Tent. It is a fiction around the biblical story of Dinah, one of the daughters of Jacob. In it, when she gets her first period, she goes through a strange ritual, which read like it was something of a dreamy party.

I don’t know if there are cultures in the world that celebrate women’s milestones like that, or if it was entirely fictional. But I found this to be so empowering. Why don’t we celebrate our first periods, or the end of nursing or our arrival into menopause?

I so desperately want to live in a world where girls are not shamed for our bodies, our hormonal cycles, our ageing process. We can start by celebrating our own milestones.

How to have a Tea Party:

In case you forgot.

Do THIS!

Seriously. Don’t wait. Please don’t put off celebrating your milestones and your successes! You deserve a tea party, or a menopause Happy Hour. Do this!!!!

Published by Lily Fields

I am passionate about contentment. This is a challenge, because I am equally passionate about progress. I get up at 4:00AM to chip away at a solution to this monolithic problem: how to make progress on my contentment. Born and raised in the USA, I married a French philosophy teacher in 1999. We have lived in France since 2007. We stayed young and carefree until life threw us two curveballs in the form of little humans one after another in 2015 and 2017 respectively. Now I am a slightly older, slightly more exhausted version of myself, but with mystery stains on my walls and a never-ending pile of laundry.

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