Once a month, there is a 48 hour period in which I think, feel and believe that the gig is up and that I am no longer relevant or curious or clever or attractive or vital. During this window, it is so REAL, this pervasive feeling of blah. It is not despair. It is not fatalistic. But it is convincing. It feels like every cell in my body is a bored and slightly angry 14 year old girl saying, "Whatever."
And then, once a month for 35 years of months, I wake up and discover that I am not depressed, nor do I have the flu, nor do I have to be committed. I wake up to discover that I have my period.
Really. How can this be a surprise?
There are a few good things in this scenario.
1. Once a month I remember what I felt like every day when I was drinking to excess. And I am reminded again that it is a blessing to have 14 years of sobriety under my belt so that darker days are limited.
2. Once a month I am reminded what it feels like to be depressed or alcoholic or otherwise stuck in a system where no matter what happens around you, you can't see the beauty and the light. Empathy is everything. And I am happy for it.
3. I am also clear that there are likely other subversive neuro-muscular, chemical, hormonal patterns at work that I am slow to catch onto. And I am thrilled to work with amazing healers, body workers and astute friends who can mirror for me when I become ridiculously stuck in some thought pattern that makes no sense to the here and now.
4. As long as I have to weather this hormonal storm, I am happy for the people who make Pringles, Angel Food Cake, peanut butter-filled pretzels, and mediocre television shows.