As I pinned my Debbie Harry and Dirty Dancing posters to my bedroom wall, I remember thinking I cannot wait for the time that my periods would stop!
Little did I know or hear anything about the fact that the end of having periods is NOT the end; it is actually the beginning of what can be a really testing time.
I do not remember having a gradual build up and I had never heard of the peri menopause or even thought I was ready for such a thing at my youthful age! But wow was I shocked. It felt like the rug had been pulled out right from under me.
My 20’s were spent having fun, exercising, stretching, hydrating, practicing meditation, working on my body. I was totally in tune with everything it was doing. You could say I was ‘fighting fit’ as I continued my practice of martial arts. It was a well-known fact or ‘joke’ in my family that my body ‘was my temple’.
In my 30’s, the arrival of my children brought on new challenges and adventures; work, school life, committees and again fun all the way, as I developed them through their early life the best I knew how.
I never felt any real change in my 40’s but little did I know what was about to come. I hadn’t spoken about it with my friends or it hadn’t been a subject at school, as puberty had been. The change that was about to hit me was unexpected!
As my 50’s arrived, my menopause had me believe that all it entailed was the odd hot flush and maybe being unable to sleep properly for a while. I was definitely not expecting my brain to be completely unable to get words out of my mouth! The sad truth was that I did not recognise myself anymore and that was not a comfortable place to be.
I was no longer the efficient organiser but the indecisive slacker. Things were not running smoothly because I was forgetting to turn up, book up, show up, and support. I failed to remind others or do our special things as a family!
What was happening to me?
I was not interested in cleaning the house, cooking dinner was a chore, one glass of wine became three. I gained weight, stopped training in martial arts, gave up my kids’ karate class. I just could not be bothered to do anything!
I had no confidence, no maternal instinct, no motivation, no sexual desire, no energy. I could sometimes be found underneath a bundle of washing, sobbing for no reason at all.
I felt that my ‘dirty dancing’ days were over. I was ‘baby’ in the corner of my own life, watching everyone else having fun and dancing around me.
It then dawned on me that because I felt this way and my children were now ‘teens’, the atmosphere in the household was also going downhill.
There were issues coming into our lives that we had never had to deal with before. Emotions, actions, and drama that I had previously worked so hard at avoiding in the upbringing of my family. It was no dancing matter, I hated it!
And so, my journey began. I quickly realised if I managed to use all that I had learned from my younger years, I could build myself up to an even stronger and more focused person than before. I would balance my body and reach a whole new lifestyle to cope with this ‘change’. I was determined not to stay in the corner and never dance again!
For over two years I struggled with one of the biggest life changes that ALL women go through, something which is even more challenging when you have teenage children.
Namely the ‘Change in Life’ or that awful word which no one likes to hear - 'The Menopause'
These changes to my body and mind nearly broke me and my family but I overcame them through a mixture of techniques and products. I now work with ladies who want to regain control of their life and feelings again, like I have done.
The problem is the menopause causes changes to a woman's body that are like nothing else; and the impact of the problem can be devastating.
We need to talk about it, share our experiences with each other, not hide away. We can be great in this time of our lives.
We need to be brilliant at being who we are. Start to be selfish with what we need. Stand strong together, be proud about what we have achieved already.
We need to work on ourselves to practice the reactions and prepare solutions for our clash of ‘Menopause and Teens’.
It is so important to do this so the menopause does not take us out for good.
Menopause, Mayhem & Teens