Navigating Perimenopause: Sneaky Signs
"Is it hot in here?"
I was early 40's, facilitating workshops for mothers starting businesses - "mumpreneur" and really thought that my hotness was due to moving around and a questionable heating and cooling system, as the response from participants was... "no".
I had trouble sleeping, but put it down to overthinking and could easily get back to sleep, so really thought nothing of it.
I knew about menopause, and kinda thought that this would happen sometime in my fifties. No one had ever even mentioned this other mother of a hormone challenge called perimenopause.
In my world, and my dictionary, perimenopause did not exist.
I come from a generation where periods weren't discussed, puberty was hushed in with the phrase "you're a woman now" as a box of too big for your bonds undies maxipads were slid through the bedroom door with a little pat on the shoulder.
But the facilitating and speaking hot flash - or flush - whatever the heck it's called - that little blip seemed to be nothing but a blip. I really thought the heating in the venue was on the fritz, or it was just me from all the "talks with hands" and moving around the room as a speaker.
I had been in the best shape of my life. Business was crushing it. The first book was written. I'd been brave and ventured back out into dateland.
Then I took on a speaking gig with a large corporate client and my brain basically went "seeya, wouldn't want to be ya" and content that I knew back to front inside out all of a sudden evaded me.
I love my brain, and my confidence took a hit. I thought it was me, that I'd lost my edge.
I had always held tight to the belief that mindset is everything, yet, here, all of a sudden, my mindset had checked out.
And it took quite a while to figure out what was going on.
On the whole (with the exception of being on the pill at one point which was horrendous), I would say I'm a fairly normal, emotionally well-balanced woman at any point in my cycle. I could almost set a monthly clock (in this case the moon) by it.
Migraines started frequenting when I'd never had them
I gained weight no matter how healthy I ate and how much exercise I was doing
Emotions became roller-coastery between a teary woman in need of a hug, and someone about to pop a cap in yo ass for asking what's for dinner. Just drop the pack of Tim-Tams at my door and RUN!
And mentally, my brain became unreliable.
I hadn't experienced night sweats, so I really didn't
I could not hold a conversation and drive a car at the same time at certain points in the month.
Just when I felt like I had me all figured out and together, I seemed to be losing any sense of self and felt completely out of control of my own body.
Perimenopause impacted my productivity, my self-confidence, my business, and my wardrobe.
A trip to the GP revealed I had a bit of a hormonal shitstorm going on, complimented by extremely low iron levels (possibly caused by periods occurring every two to three weeks), extremely low vitamin D, and yes courtesy of my Dr -a diagnosis of perimenopause.
So, I want to share in this little area on the interweb how I'm navigating it, specifically in making changes to my own self-leadership & self-care and how I run my business. I want to share perimenopause resources I've found really helpful, and how I'm changing my ways of working while I rebalance my hormones.
It was one of the big reasons I wrote The Words The Caterpillar Ate, as it has called me t
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