This year has been <insert adjective here> for me! Which adjective to insert seems to depend upon both the hormones, or lack thereof, coursing through my body and how I’m managing my mindset during this phase of life. Some of the things I’ve said about the year include horrible, difficult, super tough, disastrous, a waste — all variations of “hard” but with a lot more emphasis and/or emotion coming through with some of them.
However, some of the other adjectives I’ve occasionally inserted have included a learning experience, eye-opening, difficult but with lessons I want to share with others. (Okay, not simple adjectives, but you get the picture.)
I’ve gone from being seriously pissed off at everyone, hating life, wishing it all away, and being seriously depressed to getting some hormone replacement therapy (HRT) patches and finding my real self again! (I feel between 90% and 99.9% better most days.) I think my husband wants to give my doctor a Christmas present this year! Haha! Life was tough on him, too.
Now, I was raised in a time and place when women’s health, particularly reproductive health, was never discussed “in polite company,” meaning only to a doctor in the most dire cases. My mother didn’t say much more than she had to, and although as a teenager I knew all the angst was caused by hormones and it would eventually even out and go away, no one told me I’d have to go through it all over again!!
Even though I spent the first 50 years of my life allowing myself to be too embarrassed to ask any more questions than necessary, the next few years got increasingly difficult and confusing and I needed help. I finally talked about some of it to a friend, and then starting Googling anything I could find on this transition. The results were dismal, mostly articles by white, middle-aged, male, American doctors saying, yup, these are the symptoms but there’s nothing you can do about except wait it out, and don’t worry, it’ll go away in five to ten years. This is where I remember my always-near-the-surface rage hitting new heights.
When I spoke to a writers group a few months ago on a writing topic, but happened to mention the effects of peri menopause on my writing, I found that most of the comments in the chat were variations of “Thank you so much for talking about menopause!”
Shocker! Shocking enough for me to choose to get over being embarrassed!!
So here I am, along with a few friends, talking about menopause and hormones and all the crap that goes along with it…but also all the things we’re trying and what we’re each finding makes a positive difference. We’re recording our conversations and putting them on my YouTube channel. Here’s the first one. Please let me know in the comments here or, preferably, on YouTube if this is helpful and what else you want to talk about. Right now the calls are being recorded at 6:30am ET, 12:30pm CET, and 9:30 or 10:30pm in Sydney depending on when you read this and whether everyone has gone through the Daylight Savings Time changes. If you want to be on one of the live calls, let me know. We might be able to change the time at least sometimes. Meanwhile, I hope it helps and encourages you and the people around you. We’re not alone! 🙂
How exactly do you do a year in review for your writing? Here are some ideas.
Writers need to talk about their health issues and their effects on creativity and productivity. Here’s some of that conversation, beginning with peri menopause.
…And since I’m a book coach and help people not only finish their books, but self-publish their books…yup, I had another client! (This one pays with kisses and backrubs and…ah-hem…moving on!) So as we insert another long story here, I’m now officially a publisher since I publish two authors. Whoa!
What can an author do with artificial intelligence and ChatGPT?
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