Editor’s Note: We have asked a few women to share their talks from our last Life Giving Saturday. If you weren’t able to attend, this is a perfect opportunity to hear these women’s hearts. We know they will encourage you!
A few years ago, I thought I was losing it.
-My brain felt like molasses.
-I would walk from one room to another, trying to remember what I was looking for.
-I would wake up with a racing heart in the middle of the night.
-I experienced anxiety for no reason.
-My energy dropped.
-I felt depressed.
-I believed I was getting dementia.
Fear swept over me.
And then it all started to make sense when… I experienced a hot flash! I went to the doctor and found that I was in peri-menopause. That diagnosis hadn’t crossed my mind at 39 years old. I thought this only happened to OLD women!
When you don’t feel like yourself, there’s most likely a reason, and that reason could very well involve hormones. Our hormones change drastically in the seasons of puberty, post-partum, and peri-menopause. During our child-bearing years, hormones peak and plummet during our monthly cycles. It’s okay and even wise to be concerned about your body when you aren’t feeling like yourself.
I love what Stasi Eldredge says about hormones in her book “Becoming Myself”:
“Yesterday morning I wanted to buy a puppy; this afternoon I wondered how many years I would get for homicide. Am I simply nuts? Is this just the sin nature the Bible talks about, and I’m stuck with repenting of it again and again? No, my dear sister. There is an internal reality playing havoc with my world, but it is neither woundedness, nor sin, nor immaturity- not even a touch of insanity. There are powerful feminine tides washing to and fro inside each of us, and they are having an enormous influence on our lives – and the way we perceive our lives.”
What a relief!! I’m not the only one who feels nuts! This made sense and was great news.
You may be thinking, “That’s great Jill, but when I feel out of control, how do I handle my womanhood in a way that honors myself, others and the God who made me so complex?”
Here are a few things I’ve learned:
- Be honest with God. Come to Him with the good, bad, and ugly. Lay it at His feet. But then agree with what HE says about you. God’s word says you are fearfully and wonderfully made. Speak life over your body, your mind, your emotions. When I’m feeling crazy, I pray God’s word back to him, “God, I feel like I’m falling apart, but your word says that you hold me together! Colossians 1:17
Have you ever thought about how our femininity is meant to bring life? These chemicals that sometimes rock our world actually allow us to be physical life-givers. They help us to nurture others and create beauty. Our physical femininity should be celebrated, in a world where it’s often seen as a curse.
- Recognize the enemy’s tactics. In the Garden of Eden, because of Adam and Eve’s sin, there were consequences. God said, “I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy, and in pain you will give birth. And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you.” Genesis 3:16
Whoa. Did you notice how God connects the pains of being female and our desire to control our husbands? When we are “hormonal”, some of us use manipulation, pouting, raging, emotional outbursts, and withholding from our husbands to get what we want. We disrespect them. In the moment, I may get what I want because of my control over my husband. But because of my control, the less of a husband he is, and the less of a marriage we have. Track your cycle so that you know when you may be most prone to this temptation. When you realize you’ve been grasping for control, be quick to repent and ask your husband for forgiveness. Be alert my friend! Don’t let the enemy win in your marriage.
- Reach Out. At times we all need to get help. Ask for prayer. Go see your doctor. Schedule an appointment with a counselor, a trusted friend, or a Life Group leader for advice and wisdom. Read the helpful books listed below. When you find yourself feeling down, it’s okay to take a bath, to lay in bed with chocolate and a sappy movie, to go to bed early, or to ask your husband for some extra help with the kids. Some space can be good, BUT, don’t stay in that place too long.
“Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16
If you’re feeling hormonal, admit it! Realize it’s the perfect time to run to God so that you can receive HIS mercy and grace and be the LIFE-GIVER you were made to be.
This post wasn’t meant to be a biology lesson or to debate hormone replacement. Check out these great books if you want more info, and call the office if you need a list of recommended Christian Counselors.
- “Jump off the Hormone Swing” — Lorraine Pintus
- “Becoming Myself “– Stasi Eldredge
We would like to thank Jill Moudy for writing this post.