Why is it some days I am "on" and other days I am "off"? This is definitely one in a string of "off" days. Because of my overthinking tendencies I often find in these days deeper meaning in my depressing state. It must be spiritual warfare or major marital conflict or... something heavy, right? But the reality is, it's probably just PMS. No! Could it really be hormones and other biological misfirings that are making me crazy? I should have more faith than that. But just last week I was on top of the world with a spring in my step and enjoying the gaieties of life in the most wholesome way possible. Now, for the past two days I have been fighting the doldrums only to find myself irritable, ill-motivated, and for absolutely NO reason I'm throwing temper tantrums! Once I was a capable woman, full of potential and thriving in God's shiny blissful peace. Now I am barely gulping air as the muddy swamps of sadness push against my throat and threaten to pull me deeper. This is not right! Especially since my marriage is getting better all the time.
My husband is a brave soul. He has often referred to PMS as something I suffer from even as I appear to be suffering from it. Wow, brave or... something else. My parents could tell him that the most heinous mistake they could have made when I was an adolescent was to tell me I was going through a "phase". Something so invalidating and dismissible was heart-breaking to my newly budding identity. But it was true. The teenage years are a rotating ball of hormonal changes, as predictable as the stars. So why am I denying the fact that I may be experiencing the PMS phase of the moon? Because I need to grow up and face the facts. Stuff's changing and in the wise words of my dear husband (speaking for God, no doubt), "Someday you'll know your body."
What?! Me, not know my own vessel?! But he's right. The only words I understand from this mortal coil are "Hungry" and "Tired". I jump to it's aid whenever it seems to say those things. The problem is, I speak Body worse than I speak Spanish, comprendo? My own fearfully and wonderfully made temple, this tool for God's glory has been communicating to me what it needs and all I hear is "hungry" or "tired". No habla, tortilla, queso pasa? Two word vocabulary: hungry, tired. This complex machine must be saying so much more than just that.
If I were an infant, being hungry and tired might be the only reasons I feel yucky. But now I am over thirty and entering into the territory of imbalanced hormones and deteriorating metabolism. There is a wonder of change happening in my blood and brain that only the adventurers in modern medicine have uncovered. The internet is a wealth of bad diagnoses but it didn't take long before it helped me come to terms with my denial. One out of three women experience PMS, especially the over-30 kind of women. Thank you. I'm thirty-five in July.
On top of this villainous womanly ailment I also have a poor diet and irregular exercise-ness. Oh, and my upper back and shoulder tension is an issue, especially when I'm carting a writhing, screaming three-year-old out to the car. I won't say that my kids are part of my problem because they aren't. I'm the one who could be mothering them better and perhaps I will when I understand my body more. They are part of my precious, not my problem. Three-year-olds are notoriously challenging. Go ask your mom.
So instead of just eating or sleeping I need to get creative about maintaining my frame. The habit of snacking or napping to solve every bad day has got to give up. I know that more time with Jesus can fix every problem but He keeps talking to me about the same thing: self-control. I set myself up for failure when I'm irresponsible with His temple. He gave this beautiful bod to me to take care of and to use for His glory. Ever since I can remember I've selfishly neglected it or merely pacified it and got by on bare minimum. But just the way I stop and listen to my children, I need to stop and listen to the cry of my mortal self. This self that has served me on so little attention and abuse for so long that it is finally burning out. If I don't take care of my body then I'll croak! How much good can I do for this world as a sick or dead person?
I'm glad I took the time to write this. I also took a B-Complex before I sat down and that's one of the reasons I finished this. Now I have a headache and a backache and it's not because I'm hungry OR tired. It's because I'm done sitting. OK, sweet body, I'm going to love you, too. Let's move.