Moon Cycle Wisdom for Women’s Health

Lovers are patient and know that the moon needs time to become full. ~Rumi

Women are intimately connected to the moon through the menstrual cycle. This is a really powerful concept for women to understand. Just like the moon waxes and wanes, so do our hormones, our moods, our energy levels and so much more. When I began to tune into this wisdom and the way it is reflected for us so beautifully in the cycle of the moon, I felt more deeply connected to my body. I also started to understand why I was having challenges at certain times of the month.

For many years when I initially started my cycle, I was expecting to have the same amount of energy every day. I was expecting to feel the same day in and day out – emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually. So, I would continually “push through” my bleeding time, pack my schedule whenever I felt like it and not vary my diet or exercise throughout the month. This was a big learning opportunity for me.

Living this more solar inspired lifestyle led me to countless menstrual complaints and health concerns – pain, ovarian cysts, irregularity, cervical dysplasia and anxiety. I had a brief affair with hormonal birth control in my early twenties, which left me feeling drained and deprived of my own vitality. I left that behind and started to find healing – healing my relationship with my body and my cycle and integrating the feminine into all aspects of my life.

Healing has come to me in many unexpected ways, just as the great mystery of the feminine tends to let herself be known. Although this has now been a decade long journey for me, it is a process that continues to unfold. I also feel called to share this information with other women. My hope is that this will help you understand the inherent power and vitality of being a woman is found within our own bodies and our own cycles.

I want to give you some guidance to begin to recognize these changes in your own monthly rhythm as it aligns with the changes of the moon. If you’re new to this concept, take it slow, piece by piece. This may seem elusive at first. The good news is that you can easily begin to experience this in your body by simply directing your awareness and attention towards your own cycle. While women have known this rhythm intuitively for many millennia, now there is science to back up the relationship between the moon and our bodies {think lunar tides and electromagnetic fields or the relationship between light and melatonin}.

I’ll share more and more in months to come. This is something that will be a guiding light in my work in the world for the remainder of this year, and beyond.

A note on hormonal birth control

If you are on hormonal birth control, then you can begin to follow the lunar rhythm to experience each phase of the cycle. Hormonal contraceptives inhibit the fluctuations of hormones, so you most likely will not be feeling these changes on a physical, emotional or mental body level throughout the month. However, you can still structure your month in alignment with lunar wisdom which will leave you feeling more embodied, resourced and healthy.

New moon
Menstrual Phase Mirror: Menstruation

This is a time of drawing inward and carving out sacred space for yourself. With the new moon, the night sky is dark and spacious. The emotional body may be reflecting this as well.

Menstruation is a natural cleansing process for your body and it can also be a cleansing or letting go process for your mind and emotions. What are you letting go of that didn’t serve you in the last cycle? What are your intentions moving forward? This is a time to get clear within yourself and plant seeds of intention for the cycle ahead.

Your physical energy may be at it’s lowest of the month; however, intuition is at it’s peak. It’s helpful to either rest at this time or focus on more gentle physical exercise, like walking or slow, gentle yoga. Take time for journaling, meditation, being in nature or any other way you connect inward.

Hormonally, progesterone and estrogen are at their lowest levels of the month. Progesterone drops right before menstruation occurs and then estrogen starts to rise a few days after you start bleeding. The cycle starts with day one as the first day of bleeding, which is important to know for charting purposes.

The gift of the new moon is intuition, shedding what you no longer need, rest and visioning for your future.

Waxing Moon
Menstrual Phase Mirror: Follicular phase or pre-ovulation

The waxing moon is growing in it’s brightness in the night sky. In the body, this is the phase when the brain is communicating with the ovaries to prepare follicles for ovulation. The potential for new life is increasing. The light is increasing.

As estrogen rises, the uterine lining rebuilds and cervical fluid increases. Physically, this is a time of increasing energy overall. So, it’s a good time for more intense exercise {if that’s your thing} or trying something new, like pole dancing or something adventurous. Mentally, you are sharp! It’s a good time to take exams or other brain performance based activities.

The follicle grows just like the waxing moon, slowly growing into it’s fullness when it will be released for possible conception. How is the seed that you planted during the new moon growing during this time? This is a time to take action towards your goals, dreams and desires. Make plans, create and stay connected to your vision.

The gift of the waxing moon is hope for the future and for new life. It’s a time to move towards your full inner brightness!

Full Moon
Menstrual Phase Mirror: Ovulation

The full moon lights up the night sky as it reflects it’s most yang or solar expression of the lunar rhythm. For women, estrogen continues to rise and increase fertile cervical fluid and the most dominant follicle prepares to be released. With this fullness comes the desire to socialize and be seen.

It’s a good time to plan gatherings or events where you are more out in the world. Be aware of what’s working for you and what’s been growing into fullness from menstruation {new moon} to ovulation {full moon}.

The full moon is both bold and creative. How are you stepping into your fullness and creative potential? The fertility cycle is about creating life, not just babies! Of course, that potential is there and very palpable when you become present with it; however, it’s also about creating the life you desire and staying connected to the creative life force that is pulsing through you. There is abundant prana shakti to be experienced during ovulation.

Physically, you may feel an increase in stamina or ability to be more physically active in general. You may also notice a slight decrease in appetite and an increased sense of smell or taste {varies from woman to woman}.

The gift of the full moon is heightened awareness of your body on all levels, creative expression, collaboration and co-creation.

Waning Moon

Menstrual Phase Mirror: Luteal Phase or pre-menstrual phase

With the waning moon, the brightness begins to fade as moon turns dark again. After ovulation, the remainder of the ruptured follicle develops into the corpus luteum, which secretes progesterone and maintains the uterine lining for possible implantation. Progesterone has an interesting effect on the body and mind. It makes cervical fluid drier or stickier. Since you are past your fertile window, the body is somewhat protective against more sperm entering the uterus. The mind slowly begins to turn inward and becomes more adept at organizing and “cleaning house” so to speak.

Progesterone is very important for potential pregnancy and also for overall health. It promotes repair of nervous system tissue, essentially calming the nervous system. It’s a natural anti-anxiety hormone.

In line with the dimming light of the moon and the hormonal shift, this is a good time to tie up loose ends around current projects in all aspects of life. Getting organized can be a first step in seeing what needs to fall away. What can be let go of during this time? What’s not working for you? How can you let that fall away? Look for moments of release.

If you sense any frustration or sadness arising during this time, how can you sit with it and use it to inform next steps? What is the underlying need that is not being met? It’s prime time to dive a little deeper within!

Physically, it’s normal for energy to slowly decline leading up to the new moon or menstruation. Allow for more time for rest and reflection as you prepare for the next cycle. Shift your embodiment practice to reflect what you need at this time, which can vary for each woman. Watch for the moments when you may be pushing too hard. The tendency in our culture is to live in a perpetual state of full moon energy.

The gift of the waning moon is completion, down regulation and organization.

Should I be synced up with the moon?

I’m all for natural, easeful ways of connecting more deeply to the moon and potentially seeing your cycle change as a reflection of that. What I don’t see as beneficial is trying to manipulate the body into a new pattern. There is a fine line between the two. Always respect your own body and the inherent wisdom of your cycle.

I’m sharing this information so that you can more deeply understand the connection that we have with nature, namely the moon in this case. That doesn’t mean that if you don’t bleed with the new moon that something is wrong or needs to be addressed. I really feel that ultimately if you start to sit with this wisdom and begin to notice shifts throughout your own cycle, you will find the answers you need.

The phases are happening on a continuum, so we have to put some mindfulness around any attachment to a certain point in time when one phase ends and the other begins. Think of it more as a fading from one to the other, less black and white and more shades of gray. How can you use your cycle or the lunar rhythm to experience the wide range of your femininity?

The important piece to recognize is that we are not designed to feel the same way everyday: physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Within one monthly cycle there is room for all realms of experience. However, when we are living out of alignment with our bodies internal clock, things may seem difficult. With a little awareness around the gift that each phase of the cycle brings, you can begin to make shifts in your outer and inner worlds to fully receive these gifts.

Has this post helped you more deeply understand your own cycle? If it has, please share with other women in your life!

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