Yesterday, I was just not myself. I’m usually very goofy, upbeat, happy, energized, and open. But yesterday I was quiet, subdued, and almost numb. Yesterday also happened to be my late mother’s birthday, and I wondered if I was feeling blue because of that (she passed in 2017). But I’m still feeling rather blue today, and my menstrual calendar tells me that my feeling-like-shit-feelings are happening for a reason. Yep. It’s a week before my period.
I was playing my nightly Yahtzee game with my partner tonight and I was losing. In general, I am pretty intense when I play games, and I can sometimes be a good sport when I lose, but usually, I pout. I’m the worst. However, if and when I do lose, I can blow it off pretty easily, obviously not take it all that seriously, and am fine about two minutes after the game.
Tonight, I rolled an un-winning roll and atypically, violently chucked the plastic Yahtzee cup at the dice. The cup then ricocheted off of the surface we were playing on and just cleared my partner’s face by about half an inch. Not cool. But in that moment, it felt like lifting my hand to hurl the plastic cup was my only option. My rage felt unconquerable.
My mood swings are a struggle every month and the swings affect my relationship, sometimes my work, and my overall happiness. I have learned to communicate really clearly with my partner when I’m hormonal, and he has been so understanding about all of it. He has also learned from experience that it’s just better to give my hormones the right of way when passing by. I have learned to breathe and calm down before I answer a work email if I’m in a reactionary, hormonal state. And I am learning to honor my emotions when I feel like hormonal shit.
It’s no fun feeling like a monster, and I wish there was some kind of cure. I know sugar makes everything worse, and I try to reduce, if not eliminate completely, my intake when I’m feeling this way. But this is also the time when I want sugar, or any kind of soothing comfort for that matter, more than any other time.
Sometimes I wonder if the world suspects that PMS hormones are something women made up in order to excuse our power, as well as our powerful emotions.
I am honestly mystified by my own body and my own emotions when my hormones are flying, and there is a part of me that can’t help but step back in awe of the whole majesty, even amidst my misery.
It’s crazy to fathom sometimes that I have this little organ inside of me, two actually, sized about 1 to 2 inches each (if you aren’t privy, I’m talking about my ovaries). These two almond-shaped masses of tissue secrete a liquid substance that delivers my entire being into darkness, every month, and I have no control over it. How amazing, and how terrible.
And as quickly and unassumingly as my mood darkens, I can come out of it within the span of an hour or so, back to my normal self, enjoying my normal life, and feeling my normal and healthy emotions.
I trust my body and I trust Mother Nature, and I refuse to believe that this is all some accident, or some faulty process that needs remedying. And yet, it’s really, really hard to deal with, and I can’t believe women have lived this roller coaster way of life since our existence began. Surely, I’m not the first woman to have mood swings, and surely, the first women on Earth must have experienced similar swings. Women have always lived by the moon, and I know I am no different.
Dear Ancient Goddesses,
Please show me the way. Your precious wisdom has been buried underneath our modern times. I need your support and strength. I don’t have the information you once had. It has since been lost. How did you deal with this natural and normal flux every month? Were you cool under pressure or were you crucified for your unruly emotions? Did you practice mystical magic to calm your tides? Did you utilize herb wisdom and other natural concoctions? Was your emotional volatility ever celebrated, or have you always simply found ways to suppress, cope, and survive? I long to understand the depths of the mysteries of my body. Please show me the way.
It’s always darkest before the dawn. When I’m experiencing my sootiest hormonal dive, I must remind myself of the light that is trying to nose its way through the muck. Inevitably, after about two days of mud, I emerge from my chrysalis, a fluttery being of love, affection, tenderness, and sweetness, more so than normal. My partner and I notice the immediate contrast between my lifeless humming vibe and my schmoopy, glowing, awakened state. After mere hours of gray storming silence, I soon want nothing more than to be close, unable to withhold my touch.
Is this Mother Nature’s way of keeping the passionate flame alive between two lovers? Or perhaps it’s Her method of making life interesting through the repeating patterns of ebby and flowy, controlled chaos every month. Whether partnered or not, a woman experiences this wheel, and either way, she couldn’t possibly get bored with the unpredictable twists and turns. Without these waves, there is no inspiration, no creative flow, no time of rest, and no surge of life. This is Woman. This is our gift.
So, instead of blame, resistance, or even a seeking to understand, perhaps the function of my almond organs are to be blindly accepted, and thanked for the blessed verve that has always been mine.
What do you think? Do you experience the same? Have you found natural ways to manage your hormonal swings? Please share if so! I would love to hear your experiences and struggles.
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Photo of dice by Parsa khass on Unsplash
Photo of cake by Clint Patterson on Unsplash
Photo of moon by Michelle K on Unsplash
Photo of butterfly by Aaron Burden on Unsplash