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May 2024


SWB on the joys of Reverse Puberty

It’s me- I’m back! I haven’t posted in AN AGE, for two reasons. Firstly, I’ve been caught up in the clamour and hurly-burly of life. And secondly,  I am in the proper grip of the MENOPAUSE. This was confirmed to me after a blood-test showed that my hormone levels have bypassed the peri-stage of the process completely and I have crash-landed straight into the main event. This was an immense relief to discover because I thought I was just losing my shit altogether.

According to the NHS website, approximately 5% of women experience ‘a spontaneous early menopause’ which occurs before the age of 45, (which I turn in June.) The use of the word ‘spontaneous’ makes me laugh here. Normally, the word has pleasant connotations for me: an unexpected night out or a last-minute trip away, or an old friend picking up the phone on a whim for a chat. Spontaneous combustion now, THAT I get entirely, especially given how my moods ricochet round-and-about at the minute.

Others pointers indicated that I may have entered the realms of full-blown menopause.

1-My mind is mush- I’m searching for words through a sea of golden syrup.

Finishing a sentence has become quite an issue; as has using basic words. They aren’t on the tip of the tongue, the back of the throat, or even in the general area of the head. They are far-flung, dancing in the ether.

Last night I tried to issue instructions to my children.  ‘Bring in your stuff in case it rains in the night.’ I was met with blank stares. I gestured towards the window. ‘You know, your stuff, off the thing, the thing in the garden, the JUMPY THING?’

‘Girls grab your coats off the trampoline,’ interjected LSB, to put an end to the torment. Out they trotted. (Can anyone else’s offspring manage to have a bounce on their trampoline without setting up camp? Just asking.)

My inability to articulate has become a bit of a joke now. Himself read somewhere about items being bequeathed different names for the sake of amusement. Thus he now refers to the colander as the ‘holy-bowly’, tissues are now ‘sneeze-paper’, and instead of changing the bed sheets we now put on the beds pyjamas. This he does in an effort to make me feel better, or so he says.

Apparently some people know the menopause as “power surges” however I feel the opposite- like someone has stolen my plug.

2- The forgetfulness is a killer. Last week I went into the pharmacy to collect a much-needed prescription. ‘Ten minutes,’ said the kindly girl at the counter. ‘Wonderful! I gushed. ‘See you shortly.’ But by the time I’d picked up some veggies and cat-food I’d clean forgotten about the prescription and motored on home.

I’ve kept my friends informed about my dwindling mental capacities  and have told them not to take offence if I’m late or ditsy and to just please text or ring me if I’ve missed something.

Phone numbers and passwords. Holy God; not a mission do I have. Now, to be fair, I switched my phone contract recently and in the change-over I lost my old number. I mourn it every day, because I’d had it for yonks and could rhyme it off on autopilot. Maybe I’m still in the denial stage of the grieving process, but I’m damned if I can commit the new one to memory.

3- My confidence with regards to writing has plummeted, and this is such a vicious circle as a nasty little voice instils itself in my head, insistent that anything I write will be utter rubbish. But this affects all writers, even those who like me, have yet to have a book published. But, as any budding writer out there knows, if you don’t flex your writing muscle, it makes it harder to focus and return to the practice the next time. Sometimes you have to force yourself, like when it’s raining and you have to take the dog out and neither of you can be arsed but if you don’t she’ll pee all over the floor.

Hopefully though, things are on the up because I’ve started on the patches and already a feeling a semblance of calm descend. It may as yet be a mere scintilla, but I’m clinging on to it like hell and hoping for the return of clarity soon.

I know this has been a ranty/complainy post but I will be back soon with a few things that have cheered me.