It's either anxiety, grief, hormones or maybe just an inherent need to take a few deep breaths.

Let’s talk about anxiety for a sec. Or maybe it’s grief that we should be covering here…? Or hormones, maybe? In all honesty, I can’t even tell. Whatever it is we’re to talk about right now, I can at least tell you with certainty that it’s simmering in my throat, just below my jaw line, threatening at any moment to boil over and turn into full-fledged weeping; though I can’t be entirely certain as to why.

Oh wait; I’m wrong. It’s ABUNDANTLY CLEAR. This is why:

1. I’m on my period. And I’m not going to apologize for diving headfirst into that sad female stereotype; not for a moment. I’ve got hormones flying around in my brain at warp speed and that’s my uterus’s fault. It’s my problem, of course, but it’s my uterus’s fault.

2. I’m not even supposed to be on my period in the first place. Have I shouted at you enough times how much I disdain the arrival of that beast each month, as I have done every single month for the past two years since the loss of my second child? In spite of a near-non-existent egg reserve and the promise of zero more babies—as if those factors should be reassurance. But fuck no. Fuck my period. Fuck my body and its broken system.

3. I got laid off from my job two months ago and something batshit crazy in me propelled me toward a life fuelled by my passion, a life made up of writing, and a life steered more by my own desires and less by the expectations of others. The trouble with that life, though, is that it’s not working very well. It’s a lot of Canadian prairie landscape when what I’d envisioned had a bit more of a downtown Toronto vibe to it. Enough with the flat earth already.

I’m beginning to see now how being left to my own devices, allowing myself to float high up into the atmosphere via the helium in my heart, only works when there’s some sort of system in place beneath me that keeps me controlled and moving steadily higher. My heart’s sprung a leak, though, it seems; but I mean, it was a faulty system to begin with. Or maybe it’s just a bad time of the month.

Thoughts about not being good enough, about having zero relevance and not a thread of common ground with a single other soul on the planet orbit around my mind. It makes no sense, I know, but there it is all the same. I’ve talked in the past about how my miscarriage and my secondary infertility diagnosis have left me feeling less like a mother and more like a bereaved and translucent version of myself, made up mostly of mist, of fog and of that hurty-skin feeling you get when you have the flu…and I’m feeling that exponentially more of late.

I can’t find my place. I can’t see exactly where I fit in to any one system. I can’t reconcile the notion that I have great and indispensable worth outside the confines of my own home and heart—the two places on this earth where I can comfortably curl up into a ball in a bathtub full of a-bit-too-warm-actually-kinda-way-too-hot water and eat all the preemptively purchased Halloween candy my heart needs.

So I’m flying my white flag today. In reality it’s been flying for probably upwards of a week and a half, except I forgot to accompany the waving with my air horn. I was being too quiet.

Anxiety is a liar and hormones are a bitch and grief is that ever-present monster clambering up my back and none of those things are ME but they are still very much REAL. I need more love this week; more hugs, and a tiny bit more kindness because even though I’ve got that cityscape on my mind, what my soul really needs in this moment is those gentle prairie crickets.