Friday, March 18, 2011

The Menopausal Monster Lurks

The slumbering monster has awoken. His nap is over and he is ready to feed again. On the outside, all appears normal, but inside of me there is a raging presence that will not go away. He might take a rest, but he always shows up again.

This monster that has taken up residence was uninvited. He is unwelcome, but I cannot find a way to make him pack up and go. I'm feeling as if the doctors are pretty clueless about this whole eviction process as well. All I know is that all is not well. I long to be myself again.

It is definitely a chemical change within. In fact, if there were such a thing as life police, I'm pretty sure they would arrest me for LUI - living under the influence of hormones. Just like the effects of alcohol, my hormones take control and render all my normal capacity for coping null and void. I become a different person.

This morning's experience was case in point. My brain can acknowledge that each of the events were minor setbacks, but to the monster within, they were snacks bulking him up to gigantic proportions until his power threatens to overwhelm me entirely.

My husband had informed me that we needed to take his car to the shop this morning. I was anticipating a quick trip to our nearby shop to drop it off. However, just before we were ready to leave, I overheard my husband tell my youngest that he could eat breakfast when we returned in 45 minutes. This threw me into a panic. I strapped Sean into his seat and ran back inside to grab a cup of milk and a pop tart for him to eat on the way. My husband told me to follow him. I didn't even know where we were going. I discovered also, that I had left behind my cell phone in my last-minute run for Sean's breakfast.

He drove off, but failed to put down his garage door. (We recently had to have one of the two doors replaced and they are now on two different remotes.) My remote for his door was not working. Thus, I had to get out of the van, manually close his door, re-open my door, get back in the van and re-close my garage door. By this time, he was a far pace ahead and I sped off trying to catch up. In the process, Sean's milk spilled all over the floor of the van.

These are the kind of small wrinkles that normally would make little more than a bump in my world. But, when the monster begins to bear his fangs, my reactions are not "normal." Internally, I begin to rage. Full-out anger threatens to bring me to a boiling point. Close on the heels of the anger comes overwhelming despair.

I am wondering whether my husband and children will survive the experience of living with a woman possessed of an inner monster.

I feel as if I should begin introducing myself as if we were in an AA meeting:

"Hi. My name is Wendy and I'm menopausal. I hate my husband. I hate my children. I hate my messy house. I hate cleaning it. I hate my life. My higher power seems to have taken a very long vacation. Now, step aside, before I take a bite out of you!"


Elizabeth A. said...

I have a distinct memory of coming home from school, the thermostat was on 60 and my mother in the tub crying. Menopause sucks, and I'm glad it's something women are talking about openly these days. Go get your levels tested. Women NEED testosterone and progesterone.

Wendy said...

I actually don't remember my own mother going through menopause, but then she had me at 27, so I was probably not at home for those years.

The sad thing is that I am already on a natural hormone replacement regimen. It does help, but the cyclical nature of my emotional swings continues to really drag me down. I don't think the DO I am seeing is testing my levels often enough, but I'm really wanting to find someone else.

Anonymous said...

Thank you! You described exactly how I feel. My husband, a normally tolerant fellow, is losing patience. No one wants to be around me and I wish everyone would go away!
I want the old me back, but I don't know where she went.
It would be great if other women posted about how they got through this.

Wendy said...

Dear Anonymous - Sorry it has taken me almost a week to respond to your comment. Thank you so much for leaving a comment of solidarity. Menopause can be so very difficult for some women. I have since gone on an antidepressant and it is at least providing a bit of stabilization in my moods. Even still, though, there are so many days when I just don't want to get up in the morning because getting through my day feels overwhelming. I cling to the hope that time will heal all things, if I can just hang on long enough to see it through. Please do be encouraged that you are not alone and other women are struggling with very similar confusing emotions and sentiments.

Cherry said...

I hear you but the fact that others are going through it doesn't make it easier. Surely there is something that can be done about this. If men had to endure this there would not only be a cure... any sort of medical treatment would be covered by insurance!