cw: peri-menopause, depression, body dysmorphia + dysphoria
First I want to say that I am very proud of myself for writing here thirteen days in a row. Having that writing goal at the end of each day was a blessing and helped me continue on, and helped me put my feelings and needs and responsibilities in context. I hope to do that again.
To read the series in order, you can go to the first post and count the days until the twelfth day.
I have been in peri-menopause for a while now, at least three years, I think? Maybe more? I should be keeping better track. It’s not something that my doctor can literally diagnose me with, it’s more like ‘if your body is doing x, that’s probably what it is.’ My experience of it is that I have some measure of an emotional cycle monthly, but only need sanitary items three or four times a year. They say that once you have missed a menstrual cycle for a full year, it means you’ve entered menopause. However, there is so little research on the subject that who knows if that’s strictly true.
At any rate, I started a full-on sanitary-items-needed cycle two days ago, on Twelfth Night, after at least three months (I think) of none of that. It is hitting pretty hard; my body feels heavy and slow, my hydration is completely fucked up, and I’m overall feeling just so sad. I could cry at anything and I have done so during the past few days.
I hate how this feels. It’s triggering layers of trauma. It makes me feel gross and like my body is a hostile home. My goals today as I continue to support the person who did the most work during those twelve days are fewer than they were, but I feel so. Fucking. Heavy.
It will pass, but it may take a good long time. These weird cycles tend to be close to a month long, with varying levels of mess. So, ugh. Very much ugh.
I want to be honest about how the crashing after a lot of effort is such a normal part of my physical and mental functioning. It is not a surprise that I’m crashing, even though this unexpected menstrual cycle is extremely unwelcome. I did a hard thing for almost two weeks, and for the next two weeks (ish), we are continuing a level of support that’s less intense than before, but it still needs careful and compassionate oversight, and that’s my thing to do.
To sum up: my body gave me a gift I didn’t want.
I look forward to getting through and past this. I hope that you are well.
featured image is a photo by Martin Adams on Unsplash