I started my period back 5 and 10 weeks after the births of my two sons, respectively. Adding a monthly cycle to breastfeeding, and my already hormone-overloaded body quickly made me realize that I couldn’t do all the things all the time.
As I studied my body and what it was doing, patterns started to emerge. Two weeks out of the month I had almost no energy, and two weeks I could easily keep up with my two babies. I had already done a ton of research on monthly cycles, so realizing that my own energy fluctuations were connected to my hormone cycles was not surprising at all!!
Knowing my cycles would come and go like the tides allowed me to create a schedule and plan with my husband, so we weren’t swinging between frustration and coping in the course of each month.
Each month in my planner I would map out the phases of my cycle.
What are the Four Seasonal Cycles?
Cycle day 1 – period starts.
This time of the cycle is usually referred to as the “Winter” of the cycle. It’s a time when the body longs for quiet rest. The beautiful thing about this phase is that it can be a time that we are most in touch with our long-term desires and feelings. I made sure to build naps and early bedtimes into this phase. I didn’t plan to do the bulk of my errands or invite guests during this phase. Of course, there are things we can’t cut out and there are emergencies that crop up, but as much as possible, I tried to rest with my kids during that time.
Phase 2 begins around day 6.
Your energy starts to build back! This is called the “Spring” of your cycle. In this phase, your creativity will flourish. Coming out of the rest and planning of winter gives perspective and balance. This is a great time to do some deep cleaning, tackle a renovation project you’ve been eyeing, or take on a community project!
Phase 3 starts around day 12.
When you ovulate around day 14, you have your peak energy, particularly social energy. If you’ve been meaning to invite someone over or meet up with a friend for coffee – this is your week!! Also, if you have any big physical projects to tackle… you’ll be set up for success if you plan it this week. Hosting should be no problem this week because social energy reigns during the week of ovulation.
Phase 4 starts around day 19.
Your energy will start to slowly drop until your period starts again. This phase is called “Autumn,” and your body is trying to figure out if you are pregnant or not. Your metabolism is higher, so you will probably feel hungrier. If you keep trying to do “all the things” you’re probably going to be prone to feeling irritable. In the first part of this cycle you will probably still have the energy to do some big things, but winding down is important to keep from being exhausted and frustrated.
Why Take the Time to Learn Season Cycle?
As we learn to glide through these phases rather than being driven by what others say we should be doing, we show our daughters how to live within their strengths, and to perform self-care that isn’t just consumer-driven.
It also shows our sons how to value a woman who can create life with her body as having unique gifts to be loved and valued. He must understand that to support the mother of his child is the contribution that he gives as the father of the life that he created.