On a day I probably wouldn’t have typically posted . . .

September 13, 2019

I hate everyone and everything.

= my internal theme for yesterday. Things that made me irrationally angry and/or sad over the past 24 hours:

  • C’s homework. Just its very existence and the fact that it is not designed to be something he can do independently, so I have to either a) have him not do it or b) dictate him letter by letter to write down while G makes a giant mess.
  • A patient switching to another provider (actually, that would have been painful no matter what, but I was especially not in the mood. This thankfully does not happen a lot. Hey, you can’t please everyone and maybe they just wanted a fresh start/different approach. But still ouch.)
  • A learner asking me questions in what felt like a “doubting my expertise” way – not sure it would have bothered me on any other day
  • Finding out someone was pregnant (this is NOT something that would normally cause me to have any negative emotions!)
  • Pretty much every email I received (“Why do people have to send REMINDER emails!? Don’t the know I already know and my inbox is crowded enough already!?”)
  • 835734 more tiny insignificant things that I can’t even remember because they were truly tiny and insignificant

A quick look at my yearly calendar/health record (yes, in the Hobonichi) revealed that I am under the influence of progesterone, aka the luteal phase, aka PMS (probably qualifying as PMDD). I KNOW that this is a brain chemistry thing, because thankfully this is not how I usually think/function/go through the world. And yet all of my anger/difficulties feel so legitimate in the moment.

Usually I don’t post much during those times, but — I committed to one post/day for this month and I am determined to go through with my intention. Here’s to using this awareness today to at least give me pause when I start to internally fly off the handle again.

I know this is something I could probably seek some treatment for, but it’s hard to rationalize because it’s a short-lived segment of each month, and by the time I think about medication/supplements/CBT, it’s over! Also, sometimes I wonder if these rhythms are in place for a reason. Maybe these relative lows typically force me to rest / take it easier / fight against my otherwise very achieving-focused nature for a week or so each month.

But at the same time, I’d love to skip them.

Hopefully things will look up in a day or so!

Some pictures that are much happier than this post:

G had cooking in school!
I mean seriously

(PS: this is some very old school journal-style blogging today! I hope it’s not too personal and/or off-putting. I have bad days sometimes even in the context of what feels like a great life, and felt it would be okay to share.)


  • Reply Sue September 13, 2019 at 7:08 am

    I think all of your readers here appreciate your honesty! I actually know someone who takes an SSRI for 15 days of the month for PMDD…it seems to help her but I get it that it’s over within a brief period. Hope your weekend is better and I wanted to comment mostly because G. is too freaking adorable! Love the cooking outfit.

  • Reply Claudia September 13, 2019 at 7:47 am

    Really appreciated this post! I don’t think we talk about the impact of hormones on emotional health enough. I was diagnosed with PMDD a couple of years ago, and I know exactly what that rough patch feels like. I hope it passes soon! I have to say, an SSRI in the luteal phase was a HUGE improvement on my quality of life, but I also like your framing of these rhythms being in place for a reason. I get super anxious during my luteal phase and if I channel it correctly, it can be a positive anxiety that spurrs me to be more productive.

  • Reply Shelly September 13, 2019 at 7:54 am

    Thank you for sharing. It’s fantastic that you journal your cycle so well that you realize that there is a physical component along with other things that could be going on. I’ve been struggling to sleep and I have had more days in this same kind of thought spiral and I’m not normally like that. When I have no patience in me it is so hard to deal with the outside world. I think that “fixing” it with medications isn’t always the answer as long as you can manage it with the awareness you have!

  • Reply Noemi September 13, 2019 at 8:48 am

    I appreciate this post very much. Your posts always seem authentic – and we all have bad days! I also appreciate hearing more about your experiences with what you think might be PMDD because I think I have it as well but am not sure how to go about “treating it.” If I knew it were an easy fix I’d look into it immediately, but as someone with a totally wack-a-doodle reproductive system and cycle i know it’s never that easy to go about “fixing” it, and like you said it’s not every day or anything, so I haven’t taken the time to actually do anything about it. If you do take steps to manage it will you please let us know? The only thing I’ve heard of is taking an SSRI during the LP but my cycle is not consistent so I don’t think I could do that. I’m curious what other management possibilities exist and how effective they are.

  • Reply Laura September 13, 2019 at 9:12 am

    Thanks for posting this Sarah. I’m sorry to hear you feeling so rough but (selfishly) it is also good to know that even you have days like this! Wishing you a much more positive weekend. X

  • Reply Randi September 13, 2019 at 9:15 am

    Thank you for sharing and being real!!

  • Reply Jessica September 13, 2019 at 9:16 am

    I loved this post. PMS/PMDD is a huge struggle for me most months. For a few days I feel so mentally OFF KILTER and easily annoyed and extra sensitive and angry and emotional and AUGHHHHH. Even KNOWING its PMS, its still really hard. Hang in there, and thanks for being real.

  • Reply Liz B. September 13, 2019 at 9:49 am

    As always, your post will help many – so, thank you for posting on a day when you weren’t really feeling it. I hope it felt good to put your feelings into print. Hormones can be the worst (and the best), but it sounds like you had a pretty challenging day regardless of body chemistry!

    You’re absolutely right that we can’t please everyone, especially in the health/public service industry. I believe that as long as we have our students’ (patients’ in your case) best interests at heart when making decisions, our actions are always justifiable, even when not everyone agrees. I love and appreciate the honesty and want you to know that you are doing wonderful work! Cheers to better days!

  • Reply omdg September 13, 2019 at 9:50 am

    OMG I just cannot get over how cute G is.

    You know, I can relate to what you’re saying about feeling short with others, knowing it is unfair, but not being able to help yourself. It happens to me when I’m tired or overwhelmed, mostly. I try to keep it on the inside, but… am probably not always successful. I probably PMS too… mostly just the day before I will feel more irritable than usual, but sometimes I am a mess, and I only realize later that it was PMS. It doesn’t happen every month though, so it’s hard to tell.

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns September 13, 2019 at 10:10 am

    Here’s to keeping it real! I’m sorry you had a rough day. PMDD sounds really tough. It’s hard when your emotions/reactions don’t feel typical or like you are in control of them. I remember feeling that way when I was pregnant with our son. I would have really unreasonable/out-of-proportion reactions to things and I would tell my husband I knew I wasn’t being rational but I couldn’t control how I felt. As a type A control freak, that really sucks!

    Hang in there, lady! And that is a bummer about how much homework your kids have… It seems early for that. I guess there are different schools of thought on homework in early elementary but I’m hoping the school our son goes to doesn’t give much homework. It seems unnecessary at that stage of life!

  • Reply Alexis September 13, 2019 at 10:10 am

    Oh my I love this post. I too am in that icky progesterone phase where I think life is awful etc etc and I’ve also wondered – perhaps that time is there to keep my balance and rest.

    Still. I hate it.

    Re the homework—that is completely insane and I would tell the teacher, “look we’re not doing this, because it doesn’t work for our family”—if I had the courage! It’s what my therapist told me to do so if it starts happening to my 6yo I hope I can do it.

    Hang in there. I love that you shared this. Life is hard! Adorable pics <3

  • Reply jjiraffe September 13, 2019 at 10:31 am

    “I hate everyone and everything.” Ha! I mean, we all have days like this, right? Based on the podcast (I’m a fan) you are very functional, and proactive about your life. As long as MOST days aren’t like this, I think it’s OK? I definitely have 1-2 days similarly in my cycle too. Not sure what the solution is (as long as it’s not a days-long, miserable, systemic problem) other than self-awareness that it’s happening, and not going into a deep funk? If you figure it out from a medical POV, please let us know.

  • Reply Meghan Oaks September 13, 2019 at 12:51 pm

    I don’t read very often, but I do listen to the podcast pretty religously (and love it!). On a whim, I came today and read this post and whoa, I can totally relate! I’m fairly certain I have PMDD as well and am in the process of figuring out what to *do* about it, if anything. I track my cycle, so I know when to expect it, but that does not make it any easier. Mine typically starts off with a depression sort of element to it (I’m not a good mom, I feel terrible about everything, I’m a terrible wife, etc.) and then morphs into uncontrollable anger. I realize it’s irrational, but something just takes over and I cannot change it. It’s comforting to hear that others are fighting the same struggle. Interestingly enough, this only seems to have manifested after my first daughter was born, and I’m fairly even-keeled when pregnant.

    So yea, thanks for sharing your struggle today. It’s helped me, and I’m sure it will help others.

  • Reply Kari September 13, 2019 at 1:39 pm

    Read this while riding in the car with my intermittently screaming 6 week old, my constantly chattering 3 year old and my husband who is asking me to retrieve about 1 million things for him while he drives and, yeah. I hate everything! No hormones to blame. So I appreciated this post more than usual.

  • Reply Anna September 13, 2019 at 1:53 pm

    yes! real life. I’d much rather read this than a lengthy facebook brag. I am entering perimenopause (another wonderful hormonal journey) and feel irrationally angry a decent amount of the time. (p.s. people – like me- send reminders because not everyone is as organized as you :)).

  • Reply Beth @ Parent Lightly September 13, 2019 at 3:13 pm

    I really appreciate this post. I have never had any issues with PMS until now. 🙁 It is really rough. If you ever figure anything out about how to address I’d be curious to know. I’ve thought about switching birth control or something because…ugh. My brain just doesn’t seem to work for the week or so leading up to my period.

  • Reply Jenn September 13, 2019 at 6:28 pm

    I love these types of posts the best! You have such a positive outlook on life which is great, but it’s these posts that make everyone else take a deep sigh like – thank God she’s human too! Haha. I’m curious why the pregnancy news was a negative/angry thing today…was it someone lacking tact towards someone with infertility? You don’t have to share of course but that one stood out to me. 🙂

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger September 14, 2019 at 3:26 pm

      It was totally irrational! I mean I’m actually happy for her, and her news doesn’t impact me in any bad way. And I do not want anymore babies! Maybe just feeling sad that that part of my life is over?! Who knows!

      • Reply Jenn September 14, 2019 at 3:38 pm

        That makes sense. I also suffer from PMS, although mine thankfully is relegated to exactly one day a month where my emotions are extreme and the next morning I wake up with my period like ohhh that’s why I was enraged/weeping uncontrollably for no reason. Hope yours is over soon!

  • Reply Chiconky September 13, 2019 at 8:47 pm

    YES! Thank you for writing this. I had a day much like this this week. I am coming off nearly 25 years of being either on hormonal birth control or pregnant and I love it but damn, the rage is real.

  • Reply Marthe September 14, 2019 at 2:13 am

    Thanks for sharing!! PMS/PMDD here too. And feeling one week out of four to be out of character is a grand 25%. Coach tells me to “accept” it, not there yet. Supplements like B6, Magnesium, vitex agnus castus and syberian ginseng all help me, make it slightly less. Well, less anger towards others while I still hate everything and get very sad inside. Tis a season, I reckon too.

  • Reply Megan September 14, 2019 at 7:57 am

    Thanks for posting this. I go through the same hormonal cycle some months. Even little things look out of proportion for that week. Lately it is impacting my work life and as you mentioned its over before I seek medication/help etc. I think women are at an unfair disadvantage here especially when its impacting the work and career growth.

  • Reply Lori C September 14, 2019 at 1:34 pm

    Wait…. you mean you aren’t perfect and have bad days? Say it ain’t so! No seriously I LOVE this post. Your life can appear all rosy and shiny to me, as a blog reader, and I appreciate a post like this to show you can relate to everyday life being…. well… hard! Hang in there, totally normal from my perspective and wouldn’t worry about treatment. We all have those days- monthly at minimum!

  • Reply Connie C. September 18, 2019 at 12:38 pm

    Love your honesty – it is refreshing in this world today!

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