Reclaiming Menarche

A series exploring the importance of Menarche, the first menstrual blood. Ways to honour and heal.

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Wednesday Feb 02, 2022

Join Grace for this introductory episode as she shares the background and motivation behind this new series Reclaiming Menarche.
Reclaiming Menarche will explore the importance of Menarche as a Rite of Passage. Ways to honour and heal.
(Menarche is our first menstrual blood, period or moontime)

Wednesday Feb 16, 2022

Content Information/Warning
This episode contains swearing and references to birth, disempowerment/oppression of women, sexual experiences, menstruation, generational and childhood trauma, self harm and eating disorders.
Reclaiming Menarche
The First Menstrual Blood; Ways to Honour and Heal.
Join Grace as she speaks with Australian author and teacher Jane Hardwicke Collings around the importance of Menarche, the first menstrual blood.
Jane is a grandmother, former homebirth midwife for 30 years, a teacher, a writer and menstrual educator. Jane gives workshops on mother and daughter preparation for menstruation, the spiritual practice of menstruation and the sacred dimensions of pregnancy, birth and menopause. Jane founded and runs The School of Shamanic Womancraft, an international Women's Mysteries School.
You can read more about Jane and purchase her new book Blood Rites and find further information on the texts mentioned during the episode (The Herstory and Becoming A Woman) at
You can read more about Grace and her work at
Title Music JuliusH - Dance of The Witches

Wednesday Mar 02, 2022

Reclaiming Menarche
The First Menstrual Blood; Ways to Honour and Heal.
Join Grace as she speaks to Louise Press from One Woman Awake founder of Blossom and Flo Circles for Girls as they prepare and cross the threshold at Menarche. 
You can find more about Louise Press and her work by visiting her instagram @onewomanawake or contact her via her website 
You can read more about Grace and her work at
Title Music JuliusH - Dance of The Witches
Content Information
The themes and main references for this episode relate to birth, menstruation and menarche.

Saturday Mar 12, 2022

Join Grace as she speaks with Samantha Zipporah about the importance of Menarche. 
I was fortunate to meet Sam when she visited the UK back in 2019 and this meeting was one of the key awakeners  in my own womb journey. Sam is a fertility, sex, & cycle educator with over 20 years of experience developing her craft. She is devoted to breaking the spells of oppression in reproductive & sexual health through collective healing & liberation. Sam’s work rises from an ancient lineage of midwives, witches, & wise women. Animist, anarchist, Jewitch, citizen scientist, & word nerd are a few of the many titles she enjoys.With a unique praxis weaving informed scientific data, historical context & spiritual depth, her books, courses, mentorship, & workshops offer knowledge & embodied wisdom for claiming inner authority, pleasure, & power. She has tended to a wide spectrum of pregnancy & fertility experiences both in & out of clinical settings, including a decade of service as a birth keeper. Sam provides vital education for everyone from professionals to preteens. She hosts monthly events & shares an extensive library of self published books, courses, & works in progress in her online learning community, The Fruit of Knowledge. Please visit to explore her nourishing educational offerings, you can also find the colouring book and her courses we refer to via her website. 
Themes in this episode include: abortion, miscarriage, birth and menstruation. This episode does contain swearing.
Episode Synopsis 
During this episode Sam shares her story behind her practice and her passion for fertility rites and womb sovereignty for all. We dive into the historical context and the significant impact from the severance of Menstrual and Menarche connection. Sam shares her vital viewpoint around gender inclusivity when speaking around the subject of gender and anatomy -  something we need to strive towards. 
You can read more about this series at

Friday Apr 01, 2022

Join Grace as she speaks with Isla Macleod; ceremonialist, ritual designer, soul midwife and companion at thresholds. In this episode Isla speaks about the importance of honouring each menstrual bleed as an act of reclaiming our menarche rites as well as her experience of designing ceremony and ritual related to menstruation. In this episode we also explore practical and playful ways to honour and practice healthy menstruation and the importance of reclaiming the language used for our bodies and our menstruation.
Isla's new book 'Rituals for Life' is being released in September this year - a guide to creating meaningful rituals, inspired by nature and the seasons. 
You can read more about Isla's work through her website and find out more about the Reclaiming Menarche series and sign up for the newsletter at
During this episode we mention that we are co-creating a day of Womb Rites in May in Somerset, England. More information is available on our websites.
The correct book credits mentioned in this episode are:
The Pill, Are You Sure Its For You? - Jane Bennett and Alexandra Pope
4 Seasons in 4 Weeks; Awakening the Power, Wisdom & Beauty in Every Woman's Nature - Suzanne Mathis McQueen
Content Themes
In this episode the themes discussed relate to menstruation, menarche, death and reproductive anatomy and the language used for them.

Friday Oct 07, 2022

Reclaiming Menarche is a conversation about the first menstrual blood, it considers ways in which we can reclaim our menarche experience retrospectively, learn to lean into our bleeding times and heal what is often a lonely experience. The series is made from conversations with those who have influenced or inspired my own womb journey.
Hosted by Grace Hempshall, menstrual researcher and womb/fertility massage therapist.
Join Grace in episode 6 as she speaks with artist Sally Whelan. Sally is a Somerset based artist, she is a figurative painter, a wigmaker, a poet, a procrastinator and a thinker.
In this episode we talk somewhat less about menarche but more about what it means to explore a tactile, visual and playful relationship with our moon time bleed. I was really grateful when Sally agreed to record this as she invites us to learn how her monthly cycle and bleed is intrinsically linked to her creative practice and expression as a professional artist. We dive into her Blood Work practice, which plays with the overlap between devotion to self, pleasure & exploration and public art piece.
We also talk about Sallys recent series of enormous oil paintings: The Gender Divine which bring a fresh gaze upon the naked body, the stories held within the walls of the flesh and the divine nature of the unknowable self.
You can find out more about Sally by following her on instagram @painter.sally or visiting her website
You can find out more about the Reclaiming Menarche series at or on instagram at @reclaiming_menarche
For those of you who would like to know the content in advance of listening, themes explored within this episode are:
* nudity
* eating disorders
* menstrual blood

Episode 7 with Dr Lara Owen

Thursday Feb 09, 2023

Thursday Feb 09, 2023

Welcome to Episode 7 of the Reclaiming Menarche series with guest Dr Lara Owen. Dr Owen is an author, researcher, consultant, teacher and mentor in the culture, politics and organization of menstruation.
In this episode we speak about the importance of menarche, the broader experiences of menstruation alongside menstrual stigma and explore Laras new course in Contemporary Menstrual Studies. 

Friday Sep 15, 2023

Episode 8 of Reclaiming Menarche with Xochi Balfour
Xochi Balfour is a women's wisdom carrier, working to reconnect women to the earth and their womb space, and reclaim their innermost power. Holding a space of safe and sacred sisterhood she anchors us into ground, body and breath to step out of the stories of the ind and drop deeper into our innate feminine wisdom.  She lives in Wiltshire with her husband and three children and hold regular Temple circles there, as well as online groups and one to one journeys.
You can find more about Xochi's work via her website
The Reclaiming Menarche podcast series is hosted and curated by Grace Hempshall
Content Forewarning
In this episode subjects include discussion around psychedelics

6 days ago

Episode 9 is in conversation with Karen Abi-Karam.
Karen Abi-Karam is a Holistic Therapist, Doula and Celebrant based in Forest Row, Sussex, who has been working with clients for the last 20 years as they cross major thresholds in their lives. She created the HART Process in response to their needs and prides herself on dignifying our important life transitions. Karen is also a Facilitator, Mentor and Board Director with Rites for Girls CIC, supporting girls into and through their teens. The various strands of her professional practice have led her to undertake a PhD looking at the impact and value of ceremony and ritual through the transition from menarche to menopause…and the many menstrual milestones encountered along the way.
IG: @HART_HolisticFB: @HARTHolisticSupport  LinkedIn: Karen Abi-KaramWeb: 


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