Thoughts on PMS, the cyclical nature of women, and respect

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

It never fails that when I talk about any of the products that help with hormones or fatigue, there are women eagerly wanting to buy some.  Recently one of my friends purchased some of the new liquid B-12 because of how tired she feels, particularly during PMS.  Her comments got me thinking about these issues, and I had some thoughts I wanted to share, and I hope to open up a conversation about these things.

Some women have it worse than others.  It isn't nice to spend a week or 10 days a month (or more) feeling like you hate people, want to quit life, or crying and feeling miserable.  Hormones that are out-of-whack can sure make like feel harder than it really is.  I'm all for taking some vitamins to help me feel less homicidal one week a month.  LOL

However, I also have an intuition about this:  We are cyclical creatures, ladies.  We are not, by nature, made to be "even-steven" every day of our lives.  We are created to live out our childbearing years on a rollercoaster, of sorts.  Should we always be at war with this?  Is there a way we can make peace and accept this and allow it to nourish us?

I get it.  We live in a go, Go, GO! world.  Most of us are busier than we'd ideally like to be.  Most of us give and give to our families and our friends and our jobs and our social obligations, leaving ourselves in the dust.

I get it.  Nobody cares if you've got cramps or need a nap or are crying at commercials.  They all NEED you, and so you stuff it all down, or set it aside, and carry on.  I have been a mother for 20 years and have six children.  I know.  I know.  I know.

You can take some vitamins or supplements to help you not feel quite-so-strongly that you want to -smack- somebody.  You can eat some extra chocolate, too.  But what if you anticipated each cycle and made space for what your very nature is communicating to you month after month, year after year?  What if instead of fighting what your body is asking for, you choose to surrender, and see what happens?

Here is my challenge to you:  For your next couple of cycles, be mindful of how you feel and when you feel it.  Take notes if you need to.  Download the P Tracker app for your phone and make notes in there.  Notice when you feel energetic and full of ideas.  Notice when you feel tired and need naps.  Notice when the cramps come and you want to just curl up and rest quietly.  Notice what is really coming out when you feel angry or upset.  (Maybe you aren't crazy!  Maybe, just maybe, it is true stuff coming up at a time when you do not have the reserves available to ignore it.  Maybe it is stuff you should deal with later in the month.)  Take note of how you think and how you feel, and after a couple cycles you will probably start to see a trend.  From there, start to plan to take care of yourself by honoring these stages of your cycle.

When the time comes that you need a nap, make time for it, and thank your body for helping you to take a much-needed and well-deserved rest.

When the time comes that your body is crampy and sore, don't automatically silence it with a pill and keep forcing your way through life.  Try to take time to nurture yourself as kindly and sweetly as you nurture everyone else that you love in your life.

When the time comes that you feel quiet and want to curl up with a book and stay at home, try to give yourself that space.  Get your cozy blanket, a box of tissues, and read and laugh or cry or whatever you feel like doing, and just accept yourself at that point.

It does us no good to only find ourselves acceptable when we are energetic, At Your Service, prettied up, cheerful, and thin.  Ladies--you are more than all of that.  It is time to accept yourself in all of your womanliness, including the times that ask us to pull away and take time for ourselves.  Honor it.


Ben and Melanie said...

I LOVE THIS... I needed to read this today!

Marla said...

I've always believed that my true feelings, thoughts and emotions came to the surface during those times...the ones, like you say, are always shoved down, ignored or dismissed as invalid. I also noticed how our Creator arranged a very woman- friendly way in His law to give us a break from cooking, child-tending and husband-pleasing during that time... call it "unclean" all you want - if it means I don't have to cook the food, make love and end household wars for a few it whatever you want...but honoring the cycle and rhythm of that time would be a beautiful thing if we would ever just choose to "fit it in". I like your thinking, and am inspired to pay more attention to the cadence of my days...