Thursday, May 18, 2006

my inner bitch needs soothing

Oh, Lord, I am tanking today. Do you ever feel like your mood is just spiraling downward and all you want to do is huff and glare and snap at people and not make any attempt to be nice? That is me, today. It's like PMS, but I don't have PMS. I have pregnancy hormones, and maybe they are responsible for this. I do not want to do a single f-ing piece of work. I do not want to be nice to the coworkers who annoy me. I do not want to "look on the bright side" or "think happy thoughts" to try to bring myself above the line. The problem is, people who act like I feel today are not very popular around the office. So I kind of have to keep my mouth shut and try to act like I'm in a halfway decent mood.

Last night at our childbirth class, I was not in a crappy mood. I didn't think I was, anyway, except that sitting on the same chair for two hours, with just a 10-minute break in between, was not fun for my lower back. I actually thought the class was interesting. I felt engaged. I asked questions. I loved that Steve held my hand and rubbed my back and put my feet up on a chair for me. I left feeling optimistic about our hospital and good about the nurse's openness to birth plans and labor alternatives. So how in God's name did he get the vibe that I was in a crappy mood, or at least tired, as he mentioned afterward when I asked him what was wrong? (Because I was getting a vibe from him, too.) Did I really come across that way? Was I snappy? I didn't think so. But hearing him say that did bring me down: How on earth did I come across to him in a way so far from how I was feeling? Were our wires really so crossed? That doesn't usually happen to us, and when it does, it's frustrating. Still, it was behind us by the time we went to bed, and I was in a good mood when I got to work this morning. Or so I thought. So what's up with this real bad mood?

I used to go next door to the Cathedral when I was stressing about things. Sometimes I'd sit in a pew. Other times I'd walk around and look at the architecture, the powerful statues of the Gospel writers, the stained-glass windows, the engraved words: "Truly this is none other than the house of God, the gate of heaven." Other times I'd kneel in front of the Mary statue and stare at her innocent, childlike face and try to figure out what her big appeal is to so many Catholics. I've never had a thing for Mary, although lately I've been thinking about her more, trying to find new ways of imagining her, wondering if being a mother to a son will make me identify more with her. Anyway, being in that big Cathedral when it was empty and quiet calmed me down. I haven't done that for years. Maybe I should go over there today. I used to say a simple prayer while I was there - I'd ask God for grace, peace, courage and wisdom. Sometimes I'd just say those four words, over and over, like a mantra. "Grace. Peace. Courage. Wisdom."


Cynthia said...

You know Emilie, I've had bad moods before where I try to figure out what was the "one" thing that pushed me over and I realize that it may not have been just one. I have been pissed about a lot of little things that I never said or did anything about. Then whamo!!! one more thing happens and I'm ready to physically slap the taste out of someone's mouth!!!!! I may not be as upset as much about the last thing that ticked me off as I was about something that had happened earlier that I kind of left unresolved.
Did your co workers say or do anything recently that bothered you? What about Steve? What about your thoughts about church and the Mother's Day thing?
Emotions are freaky creatures that are sometimes hard to explain.
I hope the rest of your day goes a little better.
And you know that every one is ENTITLED to let her inner bitch out for a little fresh air every once and while, don't you?

Susanne said...

Well said, Cynthia. Emilie, I know that my co-worker's wife, who as you know is 8 months, has similar moods. Edgy for no apparent reason.

In fact, they have a website. It's You could read her journal entries, which talk about similar stuff. Maybe you could even sign the guestbook! (I've posted on it a few times.)

Emilie said...

Thanks, ladies. My day is going better (and I did go over to the Cathedral). And yes, I know it's OK to let her out on occasion, Cynthia. Sometimes it's even fun. :)

liz said...

I think you should let your inner bitch out more often, Emilie. Mine could use some company. ;)

Here's to all kinds of grace, peace, courage, and wisdom for you...

Ellen said...

I know exactly you are talking about, Em! I had one a couple of weeks ago. My coworker, who I don't discuss much with beyond the professional level, actually came up to me in the breakroom and asked if everything was okay in my personal life! These are the days when you have to pretend you have out-of-office stuff going on, go home, lay in bed, read a book, watch a movie, and get it out of your system. Your inner bitch needs to leave work early today, my sweet sister!