Sometimes it feels as if I am damned if I do and damned if I don’t.
Over the holidays I pulled back on my workload. Those few weeks before the New Year typically feel less pressured from a workload perspective. Meetings are easily scheduled or rescheduled for “next” year and the like. So, I took the bait and slowed down. I put things off, which is not my normal modus operandi.
Here’s The Rub:
I am having the dickens of a time re-starting my engine in the new year, so to speak. The lower gear I indulged in for the few weeks in late December seems to be stuck. In particular my writing muse eludes me and my Jack’s Smack page remained blank last week.
So I did what any self-respecting writer would do: I perused my old files of random thoughts, notes, and “AHA” moments that I often jot down. I found a gem from 2017. It struck such a chord for me that I decided to share it with you.
What A Difference Four Years Make:
“the brand of rage that sparks the detonation of missiles”
Four years ago, one morning I wrote:
Crazy hormonal fluctuations have wreaked havoc on my mind and body the last couple of days. Everything from the typical hot/cold flashes, the heavy headache right behind my eyes, and an inability to sleep. As if the physical discomfort isn’t enough, I have a burning rage inside whereby I KNOW everyone around me is an A-hole. The brand of rage that sparks the detonation of missiles on North Korea.
This morning I warned my eighth grade son. Warned him that any — and I mean ANY — misstep would not be tolerated. Showing empathetic concern, he probed as to what was wrong. I shared with him the litany of ways my body was betraying me and why.
“You’ve lived longer than was intended,” he helpfully retorted.
Just like that — six words. No one word carried any import on its own but strung together and slung at me in my estrogen-deficient blind haze devastated me. I no longer serve a biological purpose. I no longer can bring forth new life. And the machine in which I reside unabashedly is failing. It’s happened without fanfare.
Looking Back On Those Words……
“ I realized that the only one NOT getting nurtured by me — was, well, ME!”
Ouch, I don’t remember that particular morning. It’s a good thing, sounds like I was having a pretty cruddy time of things. But, reading those few paragraphs does bring me a sigh of relief. Relief that I am past that transition phase. Relief to now know there is life, beauty, good feels, and sleep on the other side of losing one’s biological imperative.
I wish I could say my transition phase was quick, if painful. But it really wasn’t. I spent almost three years figuring my “new” self out. That’s what menopause turned out to be for me personally. A metamorphosis, a shedding of my hard-wired maternal instincts. And I am not talking about instincts that only served my offspring — I was nurturing to everyone: friends, family, boyfriends. My need to nurture, during my breeding years, bled out to nearly all in my life. It wasn’t until I reached the other side that I realized that the only one NOT getting nurtured by me — was, well, ME!
Need Help? Reach Out:
And so I am here to say, if you’re deep in the chaos of menopause, there is another side. One that you will get to, eventually. And from recent conversations with many women, I learned thankfully not everyone has such a hard time. But if you are in the maelstrom of menopause symptoms and struggling, reach out. I am more than happy to share my journey
Interestingly enough, stumbling across this memory of my menopausal struggle provided the nudge I needed to reach the “other side” of my post-holiday rut. Knowing that I not only survived the transition but I am currently thriving gives me courage and patience to hangout in my low gear. Heck, I am headache free, rested, and Korea is safe — at least from me.
8 thoughts on “Thriving After The Death Of My Biological Imperative”
I loved your insight that the “only one not getting nurtured was me”. So true. That one bubbles up for me when I get overly tired, resentful, or overwhelmed by the over-doing/caring for others. Menopause was a pivotal time for me, like you, to reassess self-care in my life. Thanks.
I love when my Smack resonates with our Kuel women…. it helps me to know that I am not alone in this. We are in it together. I guess it’s better late than never that we figured out that WE are important as well. Cheers to you, sister!
Love this! As your commadre on “the other side,” it’s good to see women sharing about how there is life (and a very good one!) on the far side of menopause.
It is, in fact, VERY GOOD… on the other side, sister. Glad to be on your side, that’s for sure.
Enjoyed reading your Smack this week. Menopause was kinder to me, so it was interesting to learn about your different experience. Glad you are “on the other side!”
It’s fascinating… we all have our unique journeys. Happy to hear yours was kind…. I didn’t even realize just “how bad” it was until after….Glad you’re enjoying Jack’s Smack. I have fun writing it, for sure.
I loved your flashback to another time. It definitely resonates with me. Thanks!
So glad it resonated… please KNOW it does get better!! Patience and some trial and error…
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