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It's the HOT FLUSH!

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One day it feels like your body is your own, you are pretty much in control, then, all of a sudden, things start to shift, dramatically! 

You are minding your own business, not even exerting yourself then like a hairdryer has been turned on full blast, you feel a heat spreading over your body, and you seem to have no control over it. 

It's the HOT FLUSH!

In the past, you may have put on a few pounds here or there, but with a bit of exercise and cutting down you could lose it again. Weirdly now it seems every day despite your best intentions your belly seems to be developing a will of its own which no exercise or cutting down seems to have the same impact on, you start to google 'BLOATING'

Then your menstrual cycle, which followed a pattern you were used to, seems to have decided to do its own thing, so spare clothes, towels/tampons become the norm, followed by always having something on JUST IN CASE!

Then there is the aches and pains, the tears at things which you wonder to yourself 'why am I crying' the battle with your hair which gives new meaning to 'Bad Hair Day' You begin to notice, more hair on your brush, in the shower you notice it's getting thinner. Once you enjoyed going to the hairdresser trying new styles even, now you want to know what can be done to make it look thicker you start googling 'Thinning hair' and trying a lot of new shampoos and conditioners!

Sleep, a decent night's sleep! This can also be a challenge as you are woken due to overheating and the bedclothes need to be thrown off; something, if you share the bed may also disturb your sleeping partner, including any cats or dogs, where appropriate, who share the bed with you, as they find their snooze disturbed as the cover they were sleeping on is launched out of the way, later to be grabbed back as you snuggle in trying to get warm again as having been overheated you now find you are very cold! You may also find, there are reports from those nearest to you, that you have started to snore! You demand recorded proof.

Add to this a loss of libido, maybe increased anxiety, even depression and difficulty in enabling others to understand how you feel as they maybe inform you 'Ach it's just the menopause!' At a time when you may have other pressures in your life, a career with more responsibilities, ageing parents needing more support, children leaving home and wondering who you are again as for so long you have been wife and mum, wondering ah kids! Somewhere in all the other things I was doing that was always tomorrow and realising tomorrow may never come as the option to become pregnant is reduced. Of course, for others, it may be great no risk of getting pregnant, but then your body throws a curveball and hey guess what, you can still have children while going through menopause!

We talk about perimenopause and menopause, we used to talk about 'The Change' or 'The Change of Life' and in some ways, it's still helpful to think in terms of 'The Change' as recognising things are changing, which can bring physical, emotional, psychological even financial challenges is helpful. If money is tight, the extra cost of towels and tampons can be a stressor.

If we think in terms of changes, we can think 'Okay, what can I do to help manage this change?'

Chatting to others can be a great help, why not see if there is a Menopause Café running near you, or organise one?  

Have conversations at home, in the workplace, at clubs you may be a member of. Include all genders and people who are non-binary. 

Menopause is something which can have an impact on everyone and anyone going through perimenopause or menopause doesn't need to feel alone, little considerations can go a long way to reduce the challenges the menopause brings and help us realise there is life beyond the menopause. 

Sometimes life can be challenging, but when we find ways to face those challenges together, we can suffer less.
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Every life does matter, your life matters
 

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