Okay, so I’m a few months off. It was actually back in October. But don’t you think every flippin’ week should be Mental Illness Awareness Week? What about National PMS week? Oh wait, never mind.
My mom gave me an article from the New York Times Magazine (“All the Rage” by Ayelet Waldman) that flipped a light bulb on in my head like a dark attic lighting up for the first time in years (insert blond jokes here, if you will). It was about a woman’s diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder II that was really her body needing SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor). Chemicals in a woman’s body that metabolizes Progesterone the week before Aunt Flo and that is what causes our roller coaster mood drop. So she wasn’t Bipolar at all, just really PMSing! BAD! Apparently, we also go through mood shifts right before ovulation when our luteinizing hormones surge- aka estrogen. Apparently, these really fuck up our brains . Yeah, no shit!! I’ve discussed my PMDD and Dysmenorreah before with you. I’m not going all WebMd here, just making some realizations that might help me and help us all.
Thank you Ms. Waldman for a candid and eye-opening piece. Could we have your article printed on boxes of Tampax please so everyone gets this information?
I should just call my blog the Freakin PMS blog, I know! I seem to always write about it. Well, there’s a lot of mommy bloggers out there writing about diapers and shit and they don’t call their blogs, ‘the diapers and shit blog’. If there is one called that, please send it my way, cuz that’s probably some funny stuff.
So where was I? Right. Complaining. Again. More like, enlightening you all on your own vicious cycles. Ohh, wouldn’t that be an awesome name for an all girl indie-bitch rock band- The Vicious Cycles!! Okay, if THAT already exists, then I want to know and buy their single on iTunes.
I feel like everything in my life is related to my hormones. The good days, the bad days. The productive days. The please-honey-don’t-touch-me-you-mother-fucker-asshat days, to the -gosh-you’re-the-sweetest-husband/father-anyone-could-ever-want days. To the I’m so strong and awesome when I work out, to I’m so fat and gross and pathetic. Anybody else relate?
The woman in the article said she kept a journal of every week of every month and recorded her sleep habits, irritations, moods, etc. She saw patterns develop and could anticipate what hormones were doing what when. She knew what anxiety medication to take, what hormone therapy to take when, when a glass of wine was helpful (not everyday as you might think!) and when she was most productive, and least effective. She knew when to anticipate the honey badger days, or the honeymoon days.
I guess what really inspired me was how much she took control of her situation. Not just laid around feeling crummy, home in her bathrobe with a half-melted pint of B&Js Americone Dream opened next to her on one side, and a bottle of vodka on the other. And just happening to check Google calendar and ‘oh whaddya know’, notice the date. Sound familiar? Too familiar. No kidding.
The article even mentions having your husband in on the process and when you are about to go all honey badger on him over the dishwasher or credit card bill, he looks at the journal and realizes the week, writes down his misgivings, and saves them for when you are in a good mood. Nice husband. Not sure all will want to play by those rules. I’m going to have a dry erase board in my bedroom color coded like the kids’ after school activities and car pool charts of my moods, sleep patterns and irritations each week- so he’ll know when I’m heading into my honey badger days. Maybe I’ll find one on Pinterest that someone has crafted themselves.
Oh dear god, please don’t tell me THAT exists too! Someone came up with a Flow Chart on Pinterest?? Get it?? Flow chart??
I crack myself up! (Must be a good week.)
And there’s something else lurking around the corner. My daughter will be 12 soon. 12. We know what THAT means. James is clearly relieved we have only one daughter. He’s already outnumbered with just me. I know, I’m a freakin’ force to be reckoned with. When Emma comes along, OH BOY…Satan’s Exacta.
Did you see Modern Family? You know what I’m talking about- “Satan’s Trifecta’.
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