Hello my lovely PMDD community. Forgive me for not having written anything new in ages and probably at a very unfortunate time for many as we have all been doing our best to cope not only with the wretched PMDD but also with the total destruction of our world as we knew it. I sincerely hope you are all keeping it together...or if falling apart, loving yourself through it. Who could foresee the shitstorm in which we currently find ourselves?
Actually, forseeing shitstorms is exactly what this post is all about.
As you may already realize from previous posts or the PMDD Life Support Page, two things happened for me this year. One, I seemed to move out of uncontrollable episodes of PMDD and two, I stepped down from administering the PMDD Life Support page to focus on my yoga practice and studio.
So what brings me here today? I felt I should share with you all something that recently happened to me. First of all, imagine if you will that you are in your 50's and that you've stopped having your period. Giving three cheers for menopause, your life finally seems to be normalizing. You add more to your schedule. You feel stronger and more centered in relationships. You easily shoot down those sabotaging voices in your head. You think you've got it made.
Well, I did. I hadn't had a period for months. Zero symptoms of PMDD. I was rejoicing and feeling free for the first time in years. All that accumulated trauma from a life with PMDD seemed nothing more than a distant dream.
So I was rather shocked and suprised when, suddenly, out of the blue, I had a huge overblown reaction to a small and totally fixable problem. Overreaction may be a bit of an understatement. I was out of my mind. I couldn't stop crying...24 hours of tears interspersed with screaming and rocking and sleeping and wishing I was dead. There was no comfort to be found in anyone or anything. I really thought, "That's it. I'm finally having the breakdown of no return."
The next day, guess what happened? Go on! Guess.
If you guessed that I got another period, you guessed correctly! Surprise!
I cannot begin to describe my relief. As much as I hated to feel the all familiar cramps and reach to the back of my closet for that dusty box of pads, I had an explanation for my no-holds-barred flip out. I had to start counting down 12 months without a period again, but now I had a legitimate excuse for my tantrums.
I'm writing this because you all need to know this can and does happen. And if we aren't aware of it, PMDD can totally blindside us, somehow making what's already a totally shitty experience ever more distorted. If I had only realized beforehand what was happening. I probably would have had that tiny spark of realization that can be the difference between suffering the suffering, and merely experiencing the suffering. I would have been able to more easily accept my nuclear meltdown without all the additional self-judgment, fear and spiraling.
Take heart, sisters. This is meant to be a positive piece. On the one hand, trust and know that if you survive perimenopause (and you will), there may be longer and longer periods of "normalcy" ahead for you. On the other hand, if you have yet to enter or are in perimenopause, now you are forewarned and forearmed. Expect the unexpected at any moment, and whether or not it turns out that PMDD is the cause of your overblown conniptions, treat yourself with the enduring love and gentle compassion you've learned throughout your PMDD life.
You are not alone! Find help at the IAPMD.
Have you enjoyed what you just read? Be sure to check out my other articles on Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder. Your kind tips help me to continue building this library of PMDD-specific content.