*WARNING* If you don’t want to read about periods and lady things then stop reading NOW! Don’t say I didn’t warn you if you keep on reading.
OK, so this is really happening, probably … menopause has started. I’m actually OK with it. I mean I have had the one and only child I am ever going to have. Trust me, I’m not starting again in my mid-40s, I really couldn’t go through all that again! As it is my hands-on parenting days are going to last a lot longer than most without the patter of tiny feet.
When my step-daughter, Becky, started going through early menopause last year (she’s blogged about HRT so I’m sure she won’t mind the mention), I spoke to my mum about it as Becky wasn’t getting much, if any, advice from her Nanna who, apparently sailed through with no problems. Unfortunately, my mum wasn’t any help either because she (and my grandma) sailed through it too! Great! Let’s hope I sail through, that would be nice. It’s not looking likely that I’ll get through unscathed.
So, the symptoms include (only listing the ones affecting me right now if you want to see the list click on the link to the NHS website):
Night sweats – I have those which is really disconcerting when I have to wear socks to bed, until I warm up, because I also have Raynaud’s Syndrome which mean I have cold hands and feet, a lot. Oh, and I have a really warm husband who emits a lot of heat – I don’t need any more heat, please!
Difficulty sleeping – well, duh, thanks to the night sweats I’m waking up! Apparently this can make you more irritable during the day.
Headaches – nothing new there, I get headaches with my period anyway and always have. That’s just something I have lived with for over 30 years.
… but there’s more …
Most of us know that your periods start getting a bit hit and miss, right? OK, I can cope with missing periods and not knowing when it’s going to come along next. What I didn’t know, until I googled it because it started happening to me late last year, is that your periods can get more frequent (like every 2 to 3 weeks!) and longer! What?!? Yes! I am one of the “lucky” ones who has gone from a 28 day cycle to a 23 day cycle and the period itself lasts 7 days! Oh, and the first 2 days are *heavy*, like goes through the super plus extra tampons in 2 hours heavy. The NHS website helpfully says:
You may start having either unusually light or heavy periods.
The frequency of your periods may also be affected. You may have one every two or three weeks, or you may not have one for months at a time.
I wish I’d known that earlier. Ah well, I know now.
Here’s hoping that this will be the extent of my symptoms as I don’t seem to be getting hot flushes but you never know that may come.
Apparently, a good diet (avoiding caffeine and spicy food) and exercise can help with the symptoms and yoga/meditation helps with mood swings and irritability. Well, I don’t like spicy food and I don’t drink tea or coffee, although I do like my diet coke so maybe it’s time to find an alternative or maybe I’ll just start out by cutting down the amount I drink. I also have a healthy diet, most of the time after all you have to have treats occasionally. With regards to exercise, ever since discovering parkrun I’ve found that I actually like running and as of 2nd January I have been taking part in Yoga with Adriene’s True 30 Day Yoga Journey. I’ve really been enjoying my daily yoga and will be continuing it into February and beyond.