Midlife, Menopause & Madness

On our way to catch a water taxi we were now 5 minutes late for, I heard the words run.

Followed by, don’t walk. Run!

My son Craig spoke with the authority of my old school head master as we approached the second bridge and pushed our way through the crowds.

With my body burning in heat from a hot flush and the panic of possibly missing our slot for the taxi back to the port I replied in silence with a look that said it all (can’t he see I’m trying to calm the “crazy cat lady’ and stop her from breaking into a rehearsal of the next big TV drama scene). In a flash my [pre]menopause symptoms transported me back into the sea of pain and struggle.


That morning it took me way too long to get ready for our day out. I hated the way my clothes were just about strangling me (a few days ago my favourite trousers fitted me well). My hormonal bloated ugly body crying to be free, pleading to move comfortably.

My head in a world of negative thoughts, all screaming at me at once (the hate committee just happened to have a full agenda that day, not wanting to be interrupted under any circumstances). I hated the way I looked. I hated the way I felt even more. I hated the way this dam change of life was interfering with my peace of mind!


To top my morning off, the hairstyle I had imagined the night before was not the one staring back at me from the mirror. After 20 or so minutes (okay, it was at least 40 minutes) trying to make myself look and feel better I admitted defeat (after 51 years I know myself well enough now and accepted that this overwhelming feeling of ugliness was only going to get worse if I continued to look in the mirror and pick out every flaw for this years Oscar winning performance).  

“Step away from the mirror” in that soft familiar tone, gently resonating through my body in an attempt to get my attention.

Followed by

“Give Yourself a Break”

Easier said than done! I spat back angrily and at the same time feeling ashamed for responding with too much negative emotion and acting so self absorbed. I quickly pulled myself out this internal battle between my head and my heart and took at deep breath.

I can now laugh at my internal tug of war games, it’s like watching a episode of the worlds strongest man in the style of Bridget Jones. It’s also quite entertaining to see how quickly people and situations effect my responses during ‘crazy cat lady’ moments. My [pre]menopausal experiences would make a great script for a new comedy series; Midlife, Menopause and Madness.

The symptoms of [pre]menopause come and go as they please and can knock us totally out of balance but only if we allow them to. If you’re having a difficult day and know that you aren’t feeling your best try switching off the TV drama going on in your head and

“Step Into Your Heart”

Remember the symptoms are temporary and knowing where we are on the menopause map will help us to plan a better route.



Care to share! we love to hear about your experiences.




14 thoughts on “Midlife, Menopause & Madness

  1. The early years of menopause were terrible for me. The Hot Flashes and Night Sweats I could deal with but my temper was off the charts. I was always somewhat snarky and sarcastic but then I got worse. I almost got into several fist fights. I would say I’m calmer now but back then people who got on my wrong side nearly met sudden death. I refused all hormones. I don’t believe in those things. If my grandmothers and my Mom lived through menopause so could I. I’m still sweaty just not as angry.

    1. I agree we can get through menopause without the need for HRT. If I manage to get through this naturally I will be very pleased – its what I’m aiming for. However somedays…..those days when the crazy cat lady upsets everyone within 5 feet of her I think maybe HRT would be a good idea.

  2. Oh my gosh, I haven’t thought about menopause for years. Looking back, I think mine lasted for 10 years—seemed much longer. What a nightmare. Didn’t take anything, didn’t kill anyone, didn’t alienate everyone. Although I did find a booklet tucked away in the bookcase about how to deal with a menopausal mother. The kids swore they didn’t know how it got there! Shall I send it to anyone?

    1. lol, this made me smile. I often catch my daughter and hubby rolling their eyes after a ‘crazy cat lady moment’, I’m guessing its a bit unsettling for them too. so far it’s been around 6 years and still counting…….only 6 more years to go!

  3. I couldn’t stand the menopause symptoms, so I took both estrogen and progesterone for more than 10 years. I had an easier menopause, but then I had uterus cancer. After the cancer, I read the labels of both meds, and found out that they should be taken as combo for more than 10 years. Too late! Time went by so fast-the doc just kept giving refill without checking. Some of my friend didn’t take hormone treatment and fought through it. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you for sharing, this will be helpful to other women as it highlights the risks. This is the reason I try not to take medications of any kind. I’m so pleased to hear that your menopause was easier than premenopause. Is there anything you would do differently. Rather than ask sensitive questions about your uterus cancer I will go and read more of your story. Again thank you

      1. I went through skipping months, spotting, and had endometrial scraping (forgot the proper term) the blood got thicken but didn’t come out as menstrual period. I didn’t have any pain during pre-menopause! So far, I did 8 posts of my cancer treatment and this is the first one.
        If I could have done anything different, I would like to take herbs instead of medication for hormone replacement.

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