For the last 5 years I’ve been going through perimenopause, which means my honey has been going through it with me. In that time I’ve learned a lot about how my body works, what I’ve done to it that has resulted in issues I’m having now and what to do to bring it back to what is normal for a human female at this time in her life. It has been a long, hard road, but I’m the kind of person who has to keep digging until I know the full story – in this case, the story of me.
There are all sorts of negative perceptions that come along with this time in a woman’s life, so we may go into this period of our lives with dread, which just sets us (and those close to us) up for a rough ride. Those of us who have thought we’ve been taking care of ourselves by doing what turned out to be many of the wrong things have a rude awakening as our bodies rebel and we seemingly overnight physically turn into everything we don’t want to be. We might gain body fat, lose muscle, have difficulty sleeping, have hot flashes, have emotional issues, have trouble remembering anything, lose our sex drive, and go through many other undesirable changes. It’s different for each individual, of course, but almost all of us have to deal with a few things that we don’t want to have to deal with, unfortunately.
The question I and many others have had is, “Is this normal?” It turns out that there’s good reason to think it is not normal, but that because we’ve spent decades living lives our bodies are not geared for, we have issues when this natural transitional period arrives. In my case, I’ve done too much dieting and chronic exercise trying to be optimally healthy. When this change in body chemistry came for me, my body was not ready for it. I’ve had a few symptoms, but not as many as most other women I know. The increased body fat and decreased muscle tissue, brought on by a combination of hormonal changes and a simultaneous injury (which I unknowingly dealt with in the wrong way), have been my biggest challenges. For someone who has always been focused on health, this has been really disheartening.
Eventually, through much education and self-experimentation, I’ve gained a great understanding of what’s going on in my body. I can tell now that I’ve healed my gut and am still in the process of healing my insulin and leptin resistance. I’m supporting my adrenals and sleeping better. I’m also seeing more healing of my injury that has hobbled me for years now, thanks to the practitioners helping me (my doctor, unfortunately, is not one of them) as well as, I believe, healing systemic inflammation from decades of body mismanagement – stress, eating the wrong stuff, insomnia, etc. It’s wonderful to see progress and feel so much better! And it’s so comforting to finally understand what my body wants – to work with my body, not against it.
I was telling my honey this today, and he said he felt the same happiness and relief for me. He wants the same understanding that I have about what I’m going through. When one of us goes through some change in life, we both do – this is the nature of loving relationships. He proclaimed that this change is something to be celebrated, like any other major stage in life, like having a baby. It is a milestone that a couple goes through together. This is the first time I’ve ever heard anyone say this, and it made me love him even more, if that’s possible! It can be a rather lonely and depressing time for a woman, especially if her significant other doesn’t understand what she’s going through. So I wanted to share that amazing sentiment with everyone and encourage you to get a good understanding of the changes you or your loved one is experiencing so you can go through it together in a good way that brings you closer together for this next chapter in your journey through life.
I did not know where to go to get the information I needed when I started noticing the changes in my body. I went to several doctors with different orientations, but they were of little help. An endocrinologist pointed me in the right direction, but I had a LOT to figure out. I therefore decided to take it on as a personal challenge, and boy was it ever! It took years of sifting through and evaluating research and testing various theories on myself to find out the particulars of what my body wanted. As a former researcher, I was at home doing this, but it really tried my patience. I don’t want anyone else to have to go at it alone, so anyone who would like help understanding how your body and mind have changed and your body’s unique needs, feel free to book a free consultation so we – your honey included, if you like – can chat about celebrating this time in your life together.