You are WARNED… the following blog post contains coarse language regarding perimenopause and menopause. Men…You may wish to avert your eyes and pick up a HUSTLER magazine or something….. Seriously……
When I wore a younger woman’s undies I would sit around and listen to my older female relatives chat about what they called, back then, the “Change of Life” ( henceforth indicated as “COL”). Sounded good to me at the time. I mean, my life was pretty much mundane at that point and I thought a little change would do me good. Sounds interesting. Tell me more. They spoke of not having their period anymore and suddenly I because super psyched! I was so on board with this shit!!
I could not WAIT for it to get here!
Now, roll the tape forward about 30 years until now. I’m 49 and in the fifth full year of my own perimenopausal/menopausal/COL experience and I think to myself ,“I’d gladly take that period back if it meant no more hot flashes.” Sometimes, my little honeys, the grass is greener on the other side and sometimes it’s not. Sometimes it is mind wiltingly crappy and hotter than the face of the fucking sun. I wish I could take back the words I said about getting rid of my period so I can go through menopause. I do NOT have any pom-pom’s cheering on menopause any more. My grandmother warned me. I was listening to her and her sister-in-law talking about the COL and I said that I was looking forward to it. She adjusted her glasses, and her beehive, and she smirked at me.
“Be careful what you wish for…”.
Truer words have never been spoken in the Twentieth century. Holy Shit. The truth?
I am not gonna sugar-coat it. It sucks. It sucks balls. The nasty truth is that sometimes your poor body is ill-equipped to deal with all the wackiness that ensues when you go through perimenopause/COL. My Grandmother and her s-i-l made it seem all like a big old walk in the park, replete with rainbows, kittens and balloons.The shiteousness has never been so evident in my live-long days. The ugly truth is that I am completely ill-equipped to deal with this.
Holy Shit….. Here’s what your grandmother, mother or friends never told you:
Menopause is not just for little old ladies. My symptoms started appearing at the age of 45 and have been a near constant presence in my life and is there to remind me that no matter what I do, my body is in charge. And in change. Not me. Sometimes life is a mean, hateful little bitch you want to jack up and kill. Daily.
Go downstairs and turn your oven on 400 degrees and sit in the oven. “Wow, that is some serious kind of hot”, you think. Heh Heh. Heh. Now, have someone lock the door of the oven and adjust the temperature to broil for about 10 minutes…5-8 times a day. The heat is stifling. Water beads on your brow. Your shirt becomes so wet you can wring it out and water a garden with your sweat. I swear to god it is like swallowing the Sun. Welcome to the wild, wonderful world of hot flashes. Someone jokingly referred to them as power surges. In that case, I could most likely power a small european nation. It’s misery and it’s not funny. Well, for the most part. Okay, it’s funny at times.
An article in The Huffington Post says that, on average, perimenopause/COL can last “as long as 14 years”, whith the average being 7.5 years.
Congratulations on your ability to make drama out of absolutely NOTHING! Seriously. You turn into the Empress of all Drama Queens. Everything is either absolutely tragic and tear inducing, or everything is evil, in which case something must be stabbed ( repeatedly ) until dead, or at least until mortally wounded. My Emotions? All over the map. I can cry at the drop of a hat. I can scream at the TV and the next minute, dissolve into a puddle of snot and tears. My husband probably thinks I am nuts.
He’s probably right.
I have such dry skin that I feel like I am going to peel like a snake. I have tried every lotion known to man, and nothing alleviates it. I look in the mirror and I swear to God that I look just like Bea Arthur and the look is NOT PRETTY. I want to cry,and then slater myself in coconut oil. and sit in the oven while I spontaneously burst into flames.
My ability to multi-task went out the door completely, along with my memory. I can barely get one task done, much less the 20 a day that I used to manage. If I can find my car keys AND scratch my ass, then it is a fanfuckingtastic kind of day. I have to write EVERYTHING down except peeing and breathing. My house is a fucking rainbow of Post-It notes. I constantly forget what I am supposed to be doing and I have to check my surroundings to see where I am and if I have a reason to be there. Sometimes I just treat it like a surprise, like, “BOO! You are at Kohl’s…Now… WHY?”.
I woke up one day last week and noticed them. They attacked me in the night and became part of my very person. Bingo Wings. Truckstop Lady Arms. Bat Wings. They go by many names, depending on where you live, but suddenly you have them. Flabby arms that wave goodbye when you raise your arm. I could knock myself out. Cold. And since I am now suddenly vain about my arms, the long sleeve shirts stay on. Even if it is 97 degrees outside and I am THISCLOSE to bursting into flame.
I have always had insomnia issues, but perimenopause/COL has kicked this shit into high gear. Sometimes I can sleep like the dead for 9-12 hours straight and some nights I am up and down more than a 2-Dolla Ho. Ambien can’t touch my inability to sleep and I read somewhere than anxiety escalates during perimenopause/COL. Wow. I did not believe it. BELIEVE IT. I have always been an anxious person, and I am petrified because now I am even MORE anxious. I toss and turn and chatter in my sleep, and I get up and go into the other room at 3.23AM. I have no idea what has made me so anxious, I can now name you what comes on TV on every channel with the America’s Choice Package on Dish Network because I have seen EVERYTHING ON TV. In case you were curious, TV after 1AM sucks.
I am bloated like a Beluga Whale. I read that fluid retention and excessive intestinal gas are all part of perimenopause/COL. Everything bloats me, but I swear to GOD that the noxious odor is because of the dog.
….to be continued