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Twenty Pre-menopausal Symptoms That Have Been Sighted in My Home
by Barbara Smith
- Slamming doors, cabinets, and pot lids becomes a form of communication, especially when dh pokes his head in the kitchen and asks, "Is something bothering you?"
- Developing a new form of aerobic exercise: kick-boxing the bed clothes every night, every hour on the hour from 1:00 A.M. to 6:00 A.M.. (Also, jumping up to open and shut the window six times a night must be good exercise, right?) Popping up to change soaking wet sleep attire two and three times a night is also a good heart-starter.
- Developing perfect recall, as soon as the lights are out, of all the things I did not get done during the day. Suddenly, a large "to-do" list is projected in my mind's eye, and I spend the next two hours rehearsing what must be done before noon tomorrow. How come I can read this one perfectly without my glasses?
- Realizing the sudden inability to recall the location of the keys, eye glasses, or an overdue utility bill. Also, being unable to use the right names of any child, neighbor or my spouse.
- Memory deficits also include forgetting anything I don't write down, providing I can find the note! Worse, is rushing down the stairs to the basement, and completely forgetting why I was in such a hurry.
- Becoming blind to the embarrassing, unwanted, small hairs sprouting on my chin until my child announces, (in a loud voice on a crowded airplane, "That's a lo-o-o-o-on-g hair, Mommy" (This coincides with no longer caring about the arch in my eyebrows, since searching for other stray facial hairs now absorbs all my mirror time.)
- Seeing clearly that the baby has hair on his upper lip when I look *up* into his face.
- Owning a scale that never registers the same weight twice when I step on it -- ever.
- Owning a closet full of shrinking clothes. Also, becoming the reluctant owner of several pairs of shrinking shoes.
- Developing a deep and abiding love of chocolate, after decades of disliking sweets.
- Adding checks instead of subtracting in my check register, while entering deposits twice.
- Experiencing an absolute conviction four or five times a day that I am no longer attractive to my husband. This conviction intensifies when dh says he has no clue what I am talking about.
- Feeling a profound urge to rearrange furniture, china, glasses, pots and pans . . . by plastering them on the wall. Experiencing a fleeting rush of relief, until reason returns and I have to clean up the mess I made.
But WISDOM does come with the these uncomfortable symptoms. With the demise of the change, I am realizing that:
- Denim is a forgiving fabric, and that while
- High-heel slippers may be feminine, clogs are comfortable.
- Admitting that large prints don't make me look smaller.
- Seeing that I really can discuss almost anything with dh *if* I watch my "timing."
- Believing, finally, that dh really doesn't want Martha Stewart to live at our house.
- Listening to myself sounding like my mother - I can laugh instead of freak.
- Finally understanding what my mother meant when she said she couldn't wait for me to have teenagers, while I smile mysteriously at our darling children and whisper, "Mommy can't wait for you to have children . . ."
© Barbara W. Smith 2000, all rights reserved
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