Disclaimer: If you are a man, you might not want to read this. Unless, of course you want to understand women a little more but don’t say I didn’t warn you that it might be a little TMI.
There are four weeks in a month. That means that I have about 2 good weeks a month. Why, you ask? Because I am a woman. A woman who has all of her parts and they are still working. Like clockwork every month.
I really believe that hormones might be the work of the devil. Yes, I know we need them for our bodies to work properly. Without them, our reproductive systems wouldn’t work properly and getting pregnant would be near impossible. So I have my hormones to thank for my children, whom I love dearly. Maybe I should be a little more clear. I think estrogen and progesterone are the work of the devil.
Once a month, I could probably enter a food eating contest and win big money. I am so hungry that all sense about watching what I eat flies out the window. I have been known to eat a dozen cookies (maybe more), half a chocolate cake and a bag of Jordan almonds. And I wonder why I am not losing weight? Well working out all the time, watching what I am eating most days and then eating like that for a week will throw a wrench in any diet plan. It is the week before all Hell breaks loose that I can be found hiding in my closet eating pretzel M&M’s. It is the week before that Lou Malnati’s is on speed dial and God help the person that stands between me and chocolate and strawberries (even though I am not supposed to have them anymore).
That’s just the ravenous hunger. Let’s talk about the killer headaches and cramps and exhaustion that sideline even the busiest of moms. It’s only been recently that the headaches have been added. Headaches so bad that I can actually feel the hormone surge. Cramps that have me doing my Lamaze breathing (at least it was good for something…three c-sections later). There is the ”I was up all night partying” tired. There is the “I have a toddler who refuses to sleep on her own” tired and there is the “I am a woman so once a month, I fall asleep at the computer at 2pm and again at 7:30pm” tired for no other reason other than my hormones are going bonkers.
And the mood swings…ahhhh…the mood swings and the irritability. I resent with all of my being when I am ranting about something and Leo asks, “Is it that time of the month?” I am pretty sure shoes have flown past his head after daring to ask that question. The issues that I am yelling about are always there but admittedly come to a head the week before or the week I am due. Then when it finally makes its arrival, I cry over everything. The sight of Gia sleeping, Nico hugging me, the twins not fighting, Leo showing up with hot chocolate, a blog post about rival football teams….it all reduces me to tears. I have been known to call Leo crying about how fast time is going and how pretty soon, Nico is going to be going to college. When I am yelling or crying, I even realize the issue should not be as intense as it feels but am powerless to stop it.
I feel bad for anyone that comes in contact with me for two weeks out of the month. I am better off hiding under a rock otherwise my uncensored mouth and the fact that EVERYTHING bugs me is not going to win me any congeniality contests. I couldn’t understand why normally Leo on my side of the bed breathing like a puffer fish never bothered me but suddenly, sleeping in the toddler bed didn’t seem like such a bad idea. I usually have no problem ignoring Nico’s texts for a sleepover but last week, I thought about throwing my phone through the window and picking him up from his friend’s at 5:00pm. These hormone surges are enough to make the sanest person feel crazy. I often wonder, does all of this once a month stuff cloud things so that I go insane or for the first time all month, am I seeing things clearly and am reacting. It’s probably a little of both.
Even being aware of it, it still surprises me mid-yell or as I am throwing a shoe in Leo’s direction. It hits me like a ton of bricks when I am confused as to why I am so mad or why I am crying at the intro to Parenthood before the episode even starts…I am a woman and this must be one of those weeks.
So Ladies, I am here to tell you, if you are crabby, moody, feel like crap and it is one of those weeks for you, I feel your pain because sometimes, it sucks to be a woman. And men, if you chose to read this, I’m here to tell you, stay away from your woman or be extra nice to her when it is one of the weeks for her because really, her behavior can’t be helped because sometimes, it sucks to be a woman.
What about you? Do you suffer from bad PMS? Are you one of the few lucky ones that escapes it? What is one thing that made you cry or made you mad that normally wouldn’t have? Please share.