By Carolyn Shields, a very bad student who is editing this in the back of her Moral Theology class
For When You Find Yourself in the Fetal Position on Your Mom's Lap in the Basement:
Know, please please please know, that greater things are yet to come. God has great things in store for you, and yes, you will cry a lot until then. And yes, it truly and magnificently sucks. Do you realize how incredibly beautiful women are because Christ knew that we can handle these mini-depressions, mini-anxiety attacks, mini-self esteem issues, which when hit with at all at once during this monthly time, feels overwhelming. But we women can take these rounds and then some--I'm not even including those daggers that twist in our lower stomachs, fainting episodes in our bathrooms, diaphoretic spells, cramps and all of that physical pain which comes with being a woman. Oh, throw child birthing on the list.
We dread those upcoming pms days when life is already a struggle enough because no matter how we prep for them, we know that those days will only heighten our mental pain.
You can keep telling yourself it's only pms, but it doesn't really help. We all know this, but
I know Christ won't give me more than I can handle. I just wish He didn't trust me so much.
So, how to deal with that which makes us writhe in pain most on days when pms draws it to the forefront of our minds:
1) Recognize the miserable pain or anxiety, acknowledge its existence, and recognize its rule on you. And then?
2) Send it down to the depths of hell where it belongs. Then repeat,
3) I can't. You can. And you promised.
4) And then repeat again: I can't. You can. And you promised.
5) And one more time: I CAN'T. YOU CAN. AND YOU PROMISED, GOD, YOU FREAKING PROMISED.
6) Then know that Christ is preparing you for greater things.
We all have those dangerous thoughts that constantly lurk on the peripheral of our minds. They feel like an undercurrent that can suck us straight out into the depths of a violent sea if we trip up, or they are like a dangerous little simmer that threatens to boil over. And pms freakingggg multiples them.
It's always my mentality which takes a beating at this time. I can handle that physical pain, but it's the hours after I pull myself up from the bathroom floor, collapse in bed and wake up in puddles of my cold sweat that I hate because I think, "God, I can't even control my own body, let alone my life." And I dwell on my weakness and my littleness--and not in the good way, either. I sulk.
My power manifests itself in your weakness.
2 Corinthians 12:9
But it's moments like these that we must remember that we are precious to God, that we are glorious in His eyes (Isaiah 43:4), and that it's precisely at times like these when He REFUSES to leave us to ourselves (Hebrews 13:5), and He is with us more in our hour of need than ever. And remember: pain is only temporary. You must believe that one day it will get better. That heartache, that stupid rumor, this lack of love for yourself, this fear...all of this will one day dim in light of something beautiful. That is not to say we won't carry our scars, but one day these marks will become reminders of our battle and what we have won in defeat of it.
But it's hard to believe that when you feel like shit, right now. In this unknown. Or at This Time. Oftentimes, it's a lot harder when we are going through a trial and do not understand why we are being faced with what we shall call our personal tsunamis. But please do not forget that Christ has our best interests at heart, for He who is All said, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand” (John 13:7). Sometimes not knowing why you are going through this pain is a lot harder than the pain itself. Keep in mind the words of St. Therese: "There is no such thing as unnecessary suffering."
Sometimes we get so very tired of asking for healing. Sometimes we just want to see if our prayer actually is doing anything, so we are tempted to stop. Womenfolk, never cease praying. Never allow Satan one chance to get into your heart. Never give up. Appeal to Christ and His heavenly legion, because they will never stop fighting for you.
You can't get through this alone. But please know that those closest to you desire to help you. You are strong enough, despite what inner lies the devil is desperately trying to make you believe, and with Christ's help you can weather any violent interior storm.
Remember: it's when we are flat on our backs that we see the heavens most clearly.
Our Lady, Undoer of Knots...pray for us.