Shaking her dishwater head from side-to-side, she empathetically smiled and said a teensy bit louder, “No, not menopausal, perimenopausal.”
“WHAT?” My ever so normal response these days since my brain can’t seem to wrap itself around anything, other than going to Starbucks for octane just to maintain SLOW mode.
“You are in perimenopause. It’s the phase before menopause.” She explained, not sounding pompous, like my headache doctor, whom I went off on a few months ago, which is why I really like her—gynie doctor, NOT headache doctor (maybe I’ll be cooled off for my next visit with her in June).
I let out a HUGE sigh and asked, “What the hecks the difference?”
“Well, menopause is when you’re completely done with your periods.”
I rolled my eyes, which she’s oh so used to by now, and said, “You’ve got to be kidding me. We have premenstruation, full blown menstruation, menopause and now you’re telling me there’s something idiotic called perimenopause?”
“Yes, that’s the medical term, excluding the idiotic part, although I can understand why you feel that way.”
“That’s just ridiculous. I’m MENO-ing and it’s sure as heck NOT pausing! When will it just plain STOP?” My tone at this point was rising, which it tends to do when I get…let’s call it— passionate.
“It could take ten to fifteen years, depending.” Her patience with me is astounding, because I would’ve slapped ME upside MY head by now.
“Depending on what? If I survive that long without killing someone?” At this point I was swinging my legs criss-crossed. You know how it is—sitting on that bed thingy (which has no room to swing your legs) with the paper covering, which crinkles every time you even inhale, as you try to have some measure of composure, wearing that oh so lovely paper robe with the front gaping wide open, in a room that’s just a tad above freezing.
“No, every woman’s body is different.” I could tell she was trying very hard to maintain her professionalism, when all she really wanted to do WAS slap me upside my head using my 3 inch thick folder, of which I would have richly deserved, because I’m not a good patient and I have no patience either.
“No, seriously, I could kill someone.” I leaned forward when I told her that little doozie, holding the paper robe in place so my ta-tas didn’t accidentally fall out (not that it really mattered, she had just felt me up anyway). But she needed to know I was on the brink of the verge!
“I know it feels like that, but you won’t actually KILL anyone, I’m sure.” She scribbled something in my chart and I was SURE it read order straitjacket ASAP. Patient is certifiably insane.
“Ha, that’s funny. You’ve been treating me for how many years now and you’re SURE I won’t kill anyone. Can you scribble a note for my husband attesting to THAT, because I’m SURE he won’t believe ME!” I giggled when I said that, but in all honesty, it was more of a crazy laugh rather than a ha-ha, that’s funny kind of laugh. And during BEAST week, which could be any old time these days, I do think he’s pretty darn scared! With good reason, I might add!
My doctor has determined that I’ve been on the younger end of this perimenopause crapola. Yeah, I started way back when I was 36, but no one knew it then, so I’ve been suffering and acting nutty for almost TEN years! No wonder my brothers call me Twisted Sister.
I found out that it’s not uncommon for women to start this stupid ass perimenopause younger these days due to all the stress we’re under, the hormones that are pumped into our meats, the preservatives and additives added to our foods, the pollutants in our air…and a bunch of other goodies. It’s also why girls are going through puberty at younger ages and becoming full-blown menstrual at 8 and 9 years old!
We spend ¾ of our lives with a men-something. And let me tell you, if ONE man had a men-something, there WOULD be a cure! Just look at what happened when they couldn’t get an erection. POOF! A miracle erection pill. Yep, because the world needs MORE erections! After all it's physically impossible for men to go to work without that trusty erection!
But women— shucks, WE can do anything! Even when we are bloated to three times our normal size, and not just in our stomachs, but our feet and hands, too. We can also do all of our normal activities with our backs aching so badly that we are walking like the Hunchback of Notre Dame or with our heads pounding so loudly we could swear there was a jackhammer inside. And how about those digestive changes! Oh, those are lovely aren’t they? We don’t even know what we can eat because one month carbohydrates digest fine but the next—you had best be near a commode or wearing some Depends! Or just wear the damn Depends anyway, because our bladders can’t seem to remember how to hold 2 drops of water anymore and we wet ourselves when we sneeze!
Oh and the exhaustion! You could lay down right where you stand, but you can’t sleep—for some reason your internal clock is stuck in the ON position and even if you do manage to fall asleep, you are up every 2 hours, tossing and turning (you forgot what sleep was like, so looked it up in the dictionary and found a picture of your husband
And if anyone EVER wants to discuss torture, you could give them a piece of your mind! And it begins with someone ramming their hand up your hoo-ha and pinching the hell out of your uterus as they try to rip it out of your body! But you couldn’t get THAT lucky, the damn thing is STILL in there and you’ll have cramps again next month, or maybe in 2 weeks—there is NO such thing as a schedule anymore.
The dizziness is no picnic either. You try to stand up slowly, but it doesn’t matter... sitting, standing, laying down—it’s worse than a damn hangover—the room spins out of control no matter what you do, or don’t do, and you just pray that you aren’t doing something like…oh carrying a newborn or a knife! Or worse, both at the same time!
I saved the most favorite for last—the mood swings. We turn into Sybil Squared faster than our accumulating national debt! One minute we are acting like Mother Theresa, cooing to little babies, helping elderly ladies with their carts and allowing people to step in front of us in the grocery store line.
We are the Devil Incarnate! Not only do we want to pinch the heads off any child that dares to speak, let alone run wild in a store, but we want to run over the elderly lady who can’t even push a cart, let alone walk. And don’t even dare think we’re going to let anyone in front of us in line! Just because you have ONE item and we have fifty—wait your gosh darn turn and like it!
With all the so-called medical advancements out there, one would think there would be something, besides the synthetic pills made from pregnant horse urine, to help us women. But I suppose even with the Women’s Movement, it’s still a man’s world.
If I had two wishes, one would be to give every man at least one period, with raging cramps.
My second wish would be that once we women were done having children, it all shriveled up and fell out. This 10-15 year waiting period (no pun) is bullshit.
So, to ALL you women out there: YOU ARE AMAZING, and I COMMEND YOU! Now go lock yourself in a room, take