Who hasn’t blamed PMS for caving in into a chocolatey craving or making a big deal out of nothing during a discussion with our significant other?

During my first 12 years of getting my period, I was not in tune with my body. I did not get a regular menstruation, so I was not able to read the signs it was giving me. I was not interested either, so I was living period to period, dreading it and trying to shrug it off every time it came.

Things have changed for about some years. My cycle finally got regular and I have become interested in how my body and menstruation work. I’ve come to enjoy figuring out how my period works for me, how it functions and what my body is trying to tell me.

I like knowing and calculating my biological clock based on physical pulls and tugs around my body. I’ve felt it all: Lower back pain, oversensitive breasts, headaches, hunger, swelling and the typical (and most obvious) abdominal cramp.

(By the way, here are some tips and remedies for our annoying menstrual cramps.)

Still, I have not yet mastered the one that most affects me: discerning between an actual problem from a hormonal problem. I am the victim and a culprit of monthly hormonal induced UNCONTROLLABLE MOOD SWINGS.

Every problem looks bigger, every obstacle seems harder, every discussion more transcendental. Only after the Hormone Goggles come off, do I realize that nothing was as bad as it seemed. That everything is in fact, ok, even great, and that maybe, just maybe, I was overreacting.

And I hate it when someone else points it out. A typical monthly fight with my mom starts like this:

“NO, mom, I don’t think I’m exaggerating!! How can you say that?! Don’t you realize what all of this is?! What everything means?! What everyone has done?! They said they would be open until 7! Don’t look at me like that. Don’t blame it on my hormones, this is so much more than that this is-“…

And the next day the Hormone Goggles come off and I can see things a bit clearer…

I hope that as I have come to understand the physical effects and symptoms of my period in my body, I will also learn to understand the difference between a real problem and a hormone-induced problem. In the meantime, I would like to take a minute to thank my parents and brothers for their patience, they get to listen to a monthly rant over the TV remote. And my friends that usually get my angry texts over a made up problem.

You get me even if you don’t get me.

P.S. This doesn’t mean that you get to assume that every time I get angry I’m on my Period.