I hate to admit it, but Mother Nature is winning. By Mother Nature, I am referring to the seemingly inevitability of menopause. Yes, that’s right, I said the M-Word. The horror of the encroaching life change is outweighing the benefits in so many ways.
I endured the humiliation of hemorrhoids and heartburn during pregnancy and was rewarded with four, beautiful babies. I have withstood cramps and contractions knowing they were just a momentary inconvenience. But now I am faced with a much more brutal enemy: emotional upheaval. Don’t get me wrong, I have had my share of PMS mood swings, but they were predictable. This is something completely different. I seem to spontaneously burst into tears for no apparent reason these days. The slightest provocation and I am a puddle of goo! WTH! I am not one of those overly emotional people that cry at the drop of the hat.
Or, at least, I wasn’t. I wish now that I had been then I would know how to handle this a little better. I see a puppy on my Facebook feed, tears. I look at old family photos, a wave of nostalgia hits me, tears. Don’t get me started on sappy commercials, I’ll never recover.
And it’s not just the emotional aspect of this stage of life that gets to me, it’s the physical. I used to be kinda cold natured. I used to be skinny. I used to wear coats when it was below freezing. None of those are true anymore. Winter is now my favorite season. To me, shorts and flip flops are appropriate attire on the ski slopes. With my added girth and the lava that now flows through my veins, summer is almost unbearable.
The third part of the menopausal trifecta for me is the insomnia. Tears aren’t fun, hot flashes suck, and when you couple the first two with a lack of sleep, you get the perfect storm of irritability. Fatigue and body temperature fluctuations make me cry, crying and hot flashes wear me out, and a lack of sleep with a side of tears seems to aggravate the hot flashes! It’s a vicious circle.
I thought that menopause would be great, no more monthly visits from aunt Flo. No more midnight trips to the drug store because my daughter had used all the supplies and failed to inform me. No more days spend curled up in bed cursing Eve. I was wrong. Apparently, this phase of life can last for YEARS. Wow!
So what’s a girl to do? I think I need to reset my mind set. A few positives of this time for me are money saved on hygiene products, extra time to get stuff done since I can’t sleep, and the ability to defrost my car windows quickly in the winter. That just leaves with one aspect of this whole thing that I need to embrace, the new, emotional part of me.
That is proving to be more difficult than I thought. I get the feeling that all I can do is feel the feelings and accept the tears that come along the way. Even Jesus wept, it’s just one of the things that humans do.
I have started wearing water proof mascara, I carry a small pack of tissues in my purse, and I have stopped claiming every sniffle is another bout with allergies. I will attempt to embrace this facet of growing oldish. But the world at large should be warned, happy, sad, or angry now means the possibility of water works. I can’t help it, even the Budweiser commercial gets me verklempt now!
I am a Christian, a wife, a mom, and a part-time basket case who wants to be a full time writer.