the good friend's visit
As my body is slowly changing from a bleeding one to one that no longer does, I treasure that magical gift that my menstrual period (or “moon channel” 月經) has been throughout most of my adult life, faithfully reminding me month after month to slow down, find quiet and stillness and solitude, listen to my unconscious, receive dreams and other messages, eliminate substances and relationships and activities that no longer serve me, embrace my magical reproductive cycle and its creative power, but also get sometimes painful but always honest reminders when I have pushed myself too hard. It is not for nothing that in Chinese the conversational term for menstruation is 好朋友 (“good friend”). Keep knocking on my door, my good friend! The tea water is hot.