Puberty, ah puberty! That excruciating time when you felt like your body was hijacked by aliens from the Planet Awkward. Girls' experiences during this period vary widely based on culture and location; however, there are some universal milestones that girls go through during their development in order to turn into Women with a capital "W." So fasten your seatbelts as we travel through the timeline of female development.
Growing pains? Oh boy. No one warned us about these. At ages 9-13, girls generally experience two typical events:
"OMG! What's happening down there?" This is what most young females think while they discover that hair-baring mounds atop their chests (real subtle timing universe!) can't be hidden no matter how many sweatshirts they wear. Although breasts may appear at different times for each girl and range in size after developing fully, it's important to understand that everyone eventually gets there!
Borderline Pedicure-Worthy Nail Growth
At around this age-range or anytime later than eight years old/earlier than thirteen years old (normal just keeps getting less normal), nails grow like weeds within a week or so before needing a full-blown manicure again.
Surrounded By More Than Ponytails: Pubes Galore
Sends shivers down my spine thinking about my first pubic hairs sprouting up—oh lordy-lord indeed:
Wait..What Is Going On Down There?
The world suddenly becomes an all-new terrifying place as pubes start managing themselves without anyone paying attention whatsoever! Full blown bushiness alert!!! Teenage-girls everywhere panic because trendy clothes aren't enough anymore --the big ol’ elephant in the room has taken the form of rust-colored (or blonde...or black..) hairs in places that once felt so very devoid of attention.
The Awkward First Painful Intimate Experience
“This is NOT okay OMG! Could someone have warned me about the pain?”
First of all, how was it not acknowledged when signing up for this whole "I wanna become an adult" thing that sex could come at a price? For most girls, their first intimate experience involves blood trickling down from there like some sort of medieval Battlefield surgery. But who's going to tell your partner! Dummy!
Something Keeps ...Leaking
At ages 12-13 (give or take depending on genetics and lifestyle), periods creep into our existence uninvited:
Spotting: What Is Going On?
Is this real life? Girls suddenly realize they're becoming adults whether they want to be or not as brown gunk starts appearing in panties. This prelude period is called 'spotting' because let’s face it - ladies love renaming terrifying things with comforting synonyms.
Back Away Slowly: Explosive Periods
Holy mother-of-all that is red! Yet another side effect of developing into womanhood – getting thrown directly into shark infested waters without warning (except for limited pep talks by the insignificant friend group). It might start out slow but soon after gains momentum tearing through walls faster than ten bulls juiced up on steroids…or something...not exactly sure where I was going with that analogy.
Puberty, what a whirlwind right? Boobs, pubes and tampons --when you reach adulthood these will either have made you or just given you significant PTSD flashbacks. Don't worry though; puberty eventually passes and life generally becomes more bearable thanks to modern luxuries such as masturbation tools or chocolate chips hidden under a pastel bathrobe --hey whatever works amirite?!
Puberty presents challenges familiar yet different for each girl as they try to figure out their body and themselves in the process. Yet one thing holds true: it never gets easier but, rather, a new chapter of challenges await post-pubescent girl-women (ugh!). Puberty is just the beginning folks --keep your heads up but never too high to overlook where misplaced tampons might be hidden!