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It's the day you don't want to come too soon because it marks the end of something precious. But life pulls us along toward inevitabilities both bittersweet and beautiful. So it was that my daughter got her first period last week. And with it came whispers of childhood's end and the echo of her first footfalls on the path to womanhood. Also came my wife's voicemail message requesting an immediate, emergency airlift of feminine care products from Seventh Generation. Unfortunately for the Hapless Male (that would be me), the S.O.S. was a tad short on details. "Get some supplies. We're all out." So it was that I stood before a wall of feminine care possibilities and fully confronted my bottomless ignorance of the menstrual arts. Chlorine-free pads in different sizes. Check. Organic cotton tampons. Check. But regular or super? Whoa, there's also super-plus. Which does the daughter need? How does a father even begin to inquire about flow? Are first periods low and slow or fast and heavy? Will she even use tampons? Oh dear. We have entered the territory of daughterly maturational privacy every father fears. And what of these things called applicators? Are they boon or bane to the novice? The Hapless Male is pretty sure the daughter doesn't want the family poking around down there trying to be helpful. More importantly, do applicators need batteries? Is a training video required? Can you find it on YouTube? But I do know one thing. I love my daughter more than life itself and understand that she is no longer my little girl. All I can do is all I have done since the day she arrived. My best. Because that's what fathers do. And the good ones never fail without a fight. So I decide to get one of everything. When I get the goods home, I will leave the sorting to the expert, my wife. I will just offer a giant hug to my daughter, knowing the next time will be easier on us all. How do you choose feminine care for your family? Tell us by posting below, and we'll pick 5 Nation members to receive a free box of Seventh Generation organic cotton tampons.

Geoff the Inkslinger and his Dog

The Inkslinger has written about environmental issues for over 20 years and is a freelance writer for some of America's most iconoclastic companies and non-profits. His true loves include nature, music of the Americana/rock and roll variety, interior design, books, old things, good stories, pagan rituals, and his wife of 24 years, with whom he lives in an undisclosed chemical-free rural Vermont location along with his teenage daughter and two infinitely hilarious Australian shepherds!