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Courted By Menopause

Updated: Apr 24, 2023

Here are the ups about dancing with menopause in my forties - on one hand I get to come back to me. I get to return to the state where I was before my first moon. I don’t have to worry about any surprises...but I come back changed.

I come back a woman who has been pregnant, birthed, worried about not getting her period, and worried about getting it, amongst so many other expansions that come with being a woman.

I’ve been in constant fear of my cycle and now I’m in awe. I’m finally building a relationship with my womb.

After getting sick, I stopped bleeding. It was a 2 month pause where I didn’t bleed. I panicked.

I wasn’t ready to let go of this physical reminder of how my energy wanes and waxes. I wasn’t ready to let go of who I’d been since 1992.

I was just getting to know her. And through my body, I was getting to know myself.

I began supplementing with melatonin and my moon returned but she came back different. She bled with the full moon.

She was telling me she was letting go.

I know I will soon begin to release her and I still don’t feel ready.

Before the pause in my cycle, I was in alignment with the new moon, the energy of birthing and creation. Now I am in alignment with the full moon, releasing and resting.

So much is attached to a woman’s cycle. It symbolizes fertility, and fertility symbolizes youth. All of what we see around us, and have been taught our whole life by the actions of our culture, is that when it comes to women, youth is superior.

Youth is beauty.

Youth is validity.

This is a big part of why I believe I’m grieving for the loss of this self, the one that I have been longer than I have not.

This self had value to the patriarchy.

What happens to me when I come back to myself? When I am no longer in service of the world through my womb. When I’m no longer seen, will I finally be heard?

It’s unbelievable that most women go through this transition alone. It’s unbelievable that most women go through this transition only ever acknowledging the physical symptoms of “the change”.

We are experiencing real and profound grief. The grief of our identity

I’m blessed during this transition to have the support of a Sisterhood, a blend of those that are still fertile and those that have returned back to themselves. I get to sit alongside them and share our grief of what each identity brings. We get to be heard. We get to feel welcomed no matter what.

Not every woman has experienced this. I remember watching my mom struggle with the physical symptoms and it never crossed my mind once that she could be feeling emotions about what was happening, too. It didn’t actually sink in for me until I was met with the pause. I had glorified my connection to nature and thought it would be easy. It wasn’t, and it isn’t.

What you are going through, if you are at this stage or beyond, matters and has mattered.

We’ve been disconnected from our true power and this is an opportunity to come back to yourself. And, coming back to yourself means you must let go of who you were before. This is a death. The death of an identity. The death of familiarity. The death of naivete.

And, it is also a birth.

The birth of a free woman. The birth of your inner wisdom. And the birth of the future.

Crones matter.

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I had to let go of mine in my very early forties. Unplanned, spurred by a really bad flu which took the hearing in my left ear too and left a ringing which has never sorted itself. I will be 50 this year but feel like a part of my youth was stolen. I have been grieving in a low key way for a decade.

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