Introducing "At Home with Snuggs" – a series that revolves around individuals sharing their genuine and authentic menstruation experiences.
Meet intuitive healer Vickie Biggs as she talks us through the power of self massage, healing herself while healing others and how going off the pill changed her relationship with menstruation. Vickie is this month's cycle care story. Welcome home.
Q1- As an intuitive healer, how do you integrate practices like reiki, aromatherapy, and massage to support yourself during your period?
I do Reiki on myself every day, but when I have really bad pain or cramps I try to focus on my needs. I wish everyone could do Reiki. It's the best self healing tool that works for me.
I'll just be really gentle, I make sure that I'm eating the right things at certain points in my cycle, using different oils, like rose oil, everyone asks me what my favourite oil is and I'm always recommending, Rose. I have those tools at my disposal and I always pick them up when I need to, but the best thing I do is I just let myself rest.
I feel so lucky that I am in a position where I can actually do that, because so many people don’t. Whether they’re in jobs which demand a lot of them, or it's frowned upon to take a rest day. I think rest, rest is just so key for everything. And rest looks different to everyone.
Q2- In your holistic approach, how do you address both the physical and emotional aspects of menstruation?
It’s definitely a balance and it takes a real effort. Reiki isn't just for cramps; it's like a superhero for both my physical and emotional well-being.
If I'm feeling overwhelmed, tired, or a bit down, a session of self-Reiki is incredibly balancing. I dedicate about 10- 15 minutes to it, targeting specific areas, sometimes during a relaxing bath or in meditation.
One of the unspoken but best things about being a Reiki practitioner is that you also receive reiki when you're giving it to people. So when I do treatments, I'm also receiving all of the benefits of the Reiki too. I feel so lucky that I can have it at my disposal to do that.
Q3- As someone deeply connected to holistic practices, what advice would you give to others seeking a more mindful and comfortable period experience?
Starting is the hardest thing. It takes so much courage for people to put themselves first. The amount of people that delay caring for themselves because they have other things that take priority; Work, friends, kids, home life, family, the list really is never ending...so where do you fit into it?
I think there's a fear of, well what if I put all this effort in and it doesn't work? Then what?
I found that when I’m less stressed and feel more connected to my body and my mind, that's when my actions, my thoughts, everything - is just so much more simple and manageable. It doesn't feel as hard. You can rationalise it.
Q4- In your work, you encounter clients with varying menstrual experiences. How do you think open conversations about periods contribute to a more supportive and understanding community?
My whole journey has been learning to come back into my body, you know, but sometimes I'm not completely in tune with myself. It is a real struggle sometimes. We all have busy lives, so sometimes it's not as simple as making a choice, and the truth is I’m not always completely in tune with myself every month, I would be lying if I said that was the case.
Being open about your menstrual experience allows for deeper, real connections. Being comfortable to say 'you know what i'm not feeling great, I'm bleeding, I’ve got cramps. Can we do this another day?' It's scary. But needed.
Q5- When are you most connected with your body?
Probably when I'm doing yoga. Yoga has been a huge part of me reconnecting with my body. I got sober six and a half years ago, but before that I was completely disconnected to my body. I used to say that I was 'shoulders up'. I couldn't even feel my toes! Since then it's been a huge healing journey of learning how to reconnect to myself and my body.
I'd also say that self massage has been a huge reconnection tool. When I do that I really take the time to feel every part of my body, I feel really embodied and truly present.
Q6- How are you kind to yourself, others and the planet?
I mean, my whole life I've shaped around kindness now. From being someone that literally didn't want to be here anymore, I used to treat myself in the most unkind ways.
Now my whole healing journey has been about learning how to love myself in a way that I didn't before.
And now my life is so soft compared to how it used to be, I used to really beat myself up over lots of things and be very, very unkind to myself.
I think one of the biggest things that I used to do, which I also see lots of my clients do, is just completely bypassing your needs, ad I used to bypass my needs all of the time. Now I ask myself 'is this nourishing me?' Nourishment has been my keyword for a long time, so when I'm doing something or I'm making a decision on whether I want to do a project, or say yes to anything, I'm always asking myself 'Is this nourishing?' Like, even my phone usage, I'm asking... is this nourishing?
I'm really conscious of my actions and how kind they are, to both myself and the planet. It's so scary when you read about the climate crisis, it's generally terrifying. What steps can I take to be kinder? What steps can I take to give back to the earth? Rather than just taking.
Q7- Can you describe your personal journey with your menstrual cycle and how it intersects with your day to day life.
I was so excited to get my period when I was younger because I was desperate to be older. And then when I got it, I was like, ' wow, this sucks!' And then I very quickly, like so many teenagers, was put on the pill, so I didn't experience a true period for a very long time. I had a host of not so fun symptoms on the pill, but they were also all covered up by alcohol consumption.
When I came off birth control almost 10 years ago, I became so much more intune my body. And then, when I got sober, that was a whole other relationship with my period.
I think as I've grown older as well it feels less of an inconvenience and More of a 'wow look at my body'.
Q8- How has your understanding of your own menstrual experience influenced your perspective on menstruation in a broader context?
The less ashamed people feel about talking about periods and the menstrual cycle, the better because actually what harm is done if we do talk about it? We educate, learn and grow -
all sound needed to me. Storytelling is the best tool we have because it changes people's perspectives, and if we change people's perspectives to think that this is important and also this is normal and this isn't shameful, That's when change can happen.
founder of ‘The Dream Of’.