My periods had always been so predictable. A moderate flow with mild cramps occurred every 21 days and lasted exactly 7 days. That was the regimented pattern until just after my 30th birthday. That is when my cramps, previously manageable without medication, developed into ones requiring me to pop over-the-counter pain pills. That is also when the once nonexistent purchase and use of tampons became routine. In some out of the way location in my mind, I knew this was not normal. I knew I needed help but sometimes life gets in the way. Moving and starting a new job was the priority. My health could wait a little longer.