I’ve got a raging case of PMS. And this isn’t just any ol’ case. You see, until a month ago I hadn’t had a period for almost three years. (Sorry, men, if this is TMI. I have a teen-age son, and your gender-sex has subjected me to way too many indignities for me to feel bad about that. But whatevs.) I did “spot” a few days here and there, but I had a Mirena IUS (a hormonal IUD) that pretty much made my body think I was pregnant most of the time (which may be why I also gained 40 pounds when I had it) as well as a whole host of other side effects that made me want to yank the thing out myself toward the end. So I had the Mirena removed about a month ago, and I was told my regular periods would come back within a month or so. I was also told that PMS “might” be the first symptom, since my hormones weren’t being artificially subdued any longer. That, my friends, was the understatement of the year.
Under normal circumstances, I’m not the most even-tempered person, though for the most part sobriety has allowed me to keep my unpredictable tendencies in check. In the past three years, I haven’t keyed anyone’s car when he’s tried to mow me down in an intersection. I haven’t publicly embarrassed my children by exacting various forms of social justice under inappropriate circumstances. (Well, there was the one time I put that Polish lady in a headlock on Sheridan Rd while I was wearing a bikini after chasing her down after she poured a bucket of sand on Rebel’s head, but that was Mama Bear Action; TOTALLY different!) I haven’t threatened to castrate any men wearing silver track pants who’ve drugged my friends and are trying to drag them home out of a bar. I also hold my tongue more often than not, and while I’m not perfect I have made remarkable progress on this whole Anger Thing. Cool, right? Well, uh, no… because it seems as though not having a period for almost THREE YEARS and then, suddenly, my hormones surging through my body as they’ve been supposed for for all this time = a horrid, horrid case of the grumpies.
Within the past week, I have:
- Gotten into a screaming, crying fight with my 13-year-old son about how his complete lack of supplication and gratitude.
- Gone head-to-head with a gang-banger at the laundromat when he tried to reserve four dryers for clothes of his that were still in the washing machine. I believe I may have even quoted Aristotle about virtuous behavior at one point. I think this scared him more than the yelling.
- Yelled at another gang-banger on the Brown Line train, when he was blasting music from his tiny phone. “Please turn it off,” I said. “I’ll turn it down, but not off,” he said. “No, YOU WILL TURN IT OFF!” I said (uh, said loudly). And then when he exited the train, I yelled, “GOOD!” (When the nice man next to me joked about my soundtrack leaving the building, I scowled.)
- Cried while talking with The Philosopher about my summer travel plans, and interpreted what he was expressing as a concern about my itinerary as a down-right attack on my ability to live independently as a human being and breathe oxygen.
And this doesn’t even include about how I spent almost my entire commute home yesterday (OK, so it was only a 10-minute train ride on the Metra) writing a list of all the things in this world that annoy me, including (in small part):
- Environmental activists who continue to eat animals.
- Recovering alcoholics who are, nonetheless, still asshats.
- Grown people who ride their bicycles on the sidewalk.
- Drivers who flip off pedestrians.
- Train passengers who won’t let anyone share their seats.
Seriously, I need to run to CVS and buy a jumbo-sized bottle of Pamprin or Midol and lock myself in my apartment until this hormone tsunami runs its course. The boys are coming over tonight; I think I should make a warning sign to hang on my front door so they know that Mama’s not herself. The plus side for them is that I’ve got a kick-ass supply of cookies in the house as a result of all this madness.