Saturday, December 29, 2007
It’s that time again - time to peek back at the year coming to a close and to look ahead to creating a brand new year.
I used to forget to look back at how much I had accomplished, enjoyed, and lived each year. I was much too focused on what lay ahead and how I might want to improve myself. You know: more exercise, better health habits, being more organized, blah blah blah.
About six years ago, I started doing “Done Lists” at the end of each year, in order to not only celebrate what I’d lived, but to freaking REMEMBER it! With the advent of menopause, remembering became a lost art, that needed a little nudge (I used my calendar to make notes all year and that helped me re-view what happened.)
After celebrating the passing year, it’s natural to then look ahead to the coming one. Every New Year’s eve, I have this delicious feeling of a clean slate with all possibilities open. Most of us goddesses don’t make New Year’s resolutions anymore. We know that particular activity to be a slippery, guilt-iced slope that will only irritate us in the long run. But we do create “intentions” or “wishes”. Sometimes, especially with menopause brain, it’s hard to get started or to focus on what we want to manifest next.
Friend and sister goddess, Robin Blanc Mascari shares with us two sets of simple yet profound questions. One set is designed to help guide us through re-viewing 2007 and the other is geared to helping us envision our own 2008. Enjoy them - I really did. Perhaps you’ll think of more questions that we might ask ourselves - let us know your thoughts in the comments. (Note: a pdf copy of the questions is available for download at the end of this blog entry.)
COMPLETING AND REMEMBERING 2007
What was your biggest triumph in 2007?
What was the smartest decision you made in 2007?
What one word best sums up and describes your 2007 experience?
What was the greatest lesson you learned in 2007?
What was the most loving service you performed in 2007?
What is your biggest piece of unfinished business in 2007?
What are you most happy about completing in 2007?
Who were the three people that had the greatest impact on your life in 2007?
What was the biggest risk you took in 2007?
What was the biggest surprise in 2007?
What important relationship improved the most in 2007?
What compliment would you liked to have received in 2007?
What compliment would you liked to have given in 2007?
What else do you need to do or say to be complete with 2007?
What would you like to be your greatest triumph in 2008?
What advice would you like to give yourself in 2008?
What is the major effort you are planning to improve your financial results in 2008?
What would you be most happy about completing in 2008?
What major indulgence are you willing to experience in 2008?
What would you like to change about yourself in 2008?
What are you looking forward to learning in 2008?
What do you think will be your greatest risk in 2008?
What about your work are you most committed to changing and improving in 2008?
What is one as yet undeveloped talent you are willing to explore in 2008?
What brings you the most joy and how are you going to do or have more of that in 2008?
Who or what, other than yourself, are you most committed to loving and serving in 2008?
What one word would you like to have as your theme in 2008?
Happy New Year to all you menopausal and midlife goddesses! Here’s hoping that 2008 brings you peace, joy, and cooling breezes!
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Christmas and Menopause. These two things should not coexist in space and time. Each is overwhelming to midlife goddesses by itself. Together, they can bring us to our creaking knees.
This year, I vowed to myself, would be different. I’d be organized, but not anal-retentive. I’d go easy on the shopping (at first, I was going to make presents all year long - a goal jettisoned around Dec. 1 due to lack of inventory and initiative.) Most of all, I would relax into the Christmas spirit and ENJOY it without getting harried and hurried.
Long story short: didn’t work. Baking went poorly with hot flashes competing with the oven for the high HEAT setting. Christmas letter hasn’t been sent because it has not been written. The little shopping I succumbed to was crazy as ever. Feeling of peace on Earth, goodwill to men? Right now, harder to hold onto than a greased mongoose.
I firmly believe that every menopausal women should have her very own contingent of elves to help her through the Christmas season. We need cookie baking elves, shopping elves, wrapping and decorating elves, and a couple elves just to fan us through this most hectic of holidays. (A blogging elf would be nice, too. As long as we’re dreaming.)
So I’m calling a halt to the frenzy. Seriously! No more faux Martha Stewart. I can BUY cookies if I really want them. I can write a Valentine’s Day letter this year. (Procrastination is a practical modality for menopausal women. Just let it go long enough and maybe it won’t have to be done.) Ix-nay on more shopping or wrapping. Likewise decorating: the tree’s upright and good enough. I’m going to put Slack Key Christmas Carols on the stereo, grab a cup of eggnog, and dive into a good book. Maybe I can celebrate this way for the next ten days. Maybe all menopausal goddesses could do the same. A season without sacrificing ourselves. That would truly be a Christmas miracle.
Visit our main blogsite at www.menopausegoddessblog.org for more.
Saturday, December 8, 2007
Memory loss and brain fog swirling through my head are sadly not the only afflictions visited upon my poor mind with menopause. Oh no, seems it wasn’t enough that I can’t think clearly or remember a doggone thing. Now I get to add ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) to the list of mental whammys that accompany the Change.
Here’s an example occurring present tense, right this moment: I’m trying to write this next blog entry. What shall it be about? Midlife challenges and what will we be when we grow up? That’s a great one. But wait, there are goddesses still suffering horrendous hot flashes, maybe that’s what needs to be addressed next. Depression - that’s a biggie. No, what’s most important to look at is the question of whether or not to use HRT. I could devote several entries to that topic alone.
Like a hyperactive monkey swinging from branch to branch above the menopausal fray, my mind moves ever more quickly from thought to thought. Topics pass by in a blur. Hair growth in weird places, emotional roller coaster, loss of sex drive, hair thinning, acne, wrinkles, acne and wrinkles together, age spots, herbal remedies, dry EVERYTHING, help for depression, fear of everything, night sweats, bodacious tatas, weight gain, advice to our daughters, relationships, empty nests, a vision for the second half of life, and blah, blah, blah.
It’s overwhelming and makes me want to go into the kitchen for some chocolate or wine. Or chocolate AND wine. The only good news is that there is never a dearth of subjects when dealing with this time of life, so I ought to be writing this blog - well pretty much FOREVER.
Help me out if you can; let me know what topics YOU dear goddesses think should be talked about next. Otherwise, I’ll just let the monkey grab onto whatever topic he happens past and the blog entries will be in no particular order, rhyme, or reason. Kinda like menopause.
Visit our main blogsite at www.menopausegoddessblog.org
Saturday, December 1, 2007
As mentioned in the Thanksgiving blog entry, I have joined many of my menopausal goddess sisters in giving up worry about looking silly or foolish or clumsy. Which is why I’m suddenly willing to try anything and everything that interests me. I’m asking myself “What do I want to do, to be, to experience?” At the age of 52, I am giving myself a signed permission slip to go on any field trip I wish. (It does help to have family and friends who are in favor of my growth and development!)
So on a glorious day this November, I found myself on the beach in Waikiki for my first surfing lesson. My buddy Jack Davis (guru of the Photoshop WOW books) coaxed and coddled me through catching my first waves on a board roughly the size of an aircraft carrier. My couple of actual rides were exhilarating and addicting. The dozens of wipeouts and falls were less so, but definitely part of the whole experiential package. I dragged my weary carcass back to the beach exhausted, fulfilled, and inordinately proud of my “board rash”. (Accompanying photo is courtesy of Jack, my surfing coach.)
Am I now going to be a surf bunny? (Is there even such a thing?) Probably not. I will likely surf the baby waves once in a while. I don’t know if I’m ready to invest the time and energy involved in actually mastering the sport.
This I do know: the changes of midlife come in waves - and I’m gonna be ready to ride them with as much grace as I can muster. Sure, I’ll fall. Spectacularly at times. And then I’ll drag myself back up on the board, yell “Woohoo” and paddle out to catch the next swell.
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