Peace with Hormones

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Can you turn that time of the month into a time of grace? (This post is for women only!)

Maybe hormones aren’t as bad as I think they are.  Maybe they are my friend.  I would like to declare a truce, better still, I’d like to make nice.  To that end…a little note of appreciation to estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone.  The likes of which make me crazy.  Sometimes.  But maybe I  need to be thankful.  No, really.

Men, you can read this if you want but this baby is for women.  Yay women.  Go women! 

I have been getting my period for over forty years now.  WHAT?!?  Forty years.  Geez am I old.  Anyway, I have been getting my period since I was eleven years old.  So then why am I so surprised when it comes?  I have a killer headache for a day or two before the onset of my period.  Certain places are tender.  I want red meat.  Preferably with cheese.  Chocolate in large quantities would be good too.  I have feelings…emotions…and then woa!  OH!  Well, that explains a lot.  Who knew?  Well, for one, my husband knew…

When I am near or around, say close to menstruating, the world in general and my world in particular is a dark place.  I have no friends, no joy and no hope.  These symptoms I have come to recognize at least as passing.  I make no huge decisions during these hours.  It would be best if I did not come over to your house to your prayer meeting, sales meeting, party, whatever during these hours.  I have learned this.  But there also is some truth that surfaces in my heart when my hormones are raging.

All of my feelings are not false.  They are intensified. (This is the making nice, appreciating, hormones-aren’t-so-horrible part.)    The injustices of the world beg attention, my attention.  I am moved to act.  This is when I write the editor or my Compassion child.  Writing the oh so belated thank you notes happens now, too. 

The hurt I feel at being judged and misunderstood by others goes beyond irritation to sorrow.  A sorrow that I know I share with every other human being.  A sorrow that incites me to pray for others.  During this time of the month, the desire I feel inside as a woman for relational intimacy rises and will not be quenched by anything other than relational intimacy. Not red meat.  Not chocolate.  Not even movie theater popcorn. And this is difficult remember because in these moments I have no friends, no joy, and no hope.  

 During my cycle, I begin to wonder if I am always so self absorbed.   Or is it merely my awareness that increases?  My hormonal awareness of myself and others.  (But mostly of myself…shoot.)

It can become a time of grace.  Really!  It can!  Extending it, offering it and receiving it.

I turn to Jesus.  And where did he go by the way?  How far must I cry out for him to hear me?  The faithful friend, the companion, the one who is closer than any other sometimes feels so dang far away.  And then, hoorah, faith kicks in.  Jesus didn’t go anywhere.  Whether my estrogen level is off the charts or dipping below the equator, Jesus is right here!!!   And HE GETS ME.  Perfectly!  All the time!  He understands.  Oh thank God.

 And he aches too.  For me and with me.  He feels deeply all the time.  ALL THE TIME!  Oh, to be that alive!  I’m not sure I could take it.

 But I am growing in taking it.   I am alive.  With all the emotional roller coaster experiences and deepening faith that that entails.  And perhaps I am never more keenly alive than when my hormones are raging.  So thank you gang.  Really.  Truce.

 Today, right now, I look to Jesus.  I ache for him.  And I eagerly cry out for his return.  Come Lord Jesus!  And menopause coming maybe wouldn’t be so bad either.

 Told you this was for women. 

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