Peri meni & me

I have always kinda looked forward to the menopause, the final change that my body will go through. Looking forward to the day when the endless cycles of monthly periods fuck off, meaning in my head…

  • No more Tampax
  • No more worrying about pregnancy 
  • No more flooding 
  • No more carrying spare pants during the time of the month
  • No more planning holidays around my “time of the month” 
  • No more mood swings
  • No more PMT = no more prozac 
  • No more cramps 
  • No more “sorry I can’t I’m on” excuses – (I’m going to have to think of something else)

I mean which women in her right mind wouldn’t heh ? for years I had been biding my time waiting for the 12 consecutive months without the dreaded period which would tell me I have reached menopause, 

My mother hadn’t really experienced many of the hot flushes or dreaded sweats associated with it so I was hoping that I might be one of the lucky ones. I mean some women have even described going through the menopause as being the best thing that has happened to them, so I was more than ready for the change!

I’ll take you back when it all started (A year ago) – I hadn’t been myself mentally or physically for a while. Now I consider myself to be a pretty insightful person, I have my own understanding of my own spiritually, how to manage my self-esteem I have a deep understanding of what makes me tick! How to manage my emotions, my thoughts managing my own mental health has always been a priority for me since overcoming a dependency many years ago. It was about the same time that I started journalling and thank god I did because without the journalling I might have been suffering in silence for a lot longer and unnecessarily! 

Last year desperate I went to my doctors I explained all the symptoms I was experiencing, low mood, episodes of lethargy and fatigue, I was thinking I had ME or Chronic Fatigue, but he suggested that I might be Perimenopausal? Now don’t get me wrong I had heard of this before, but what I now realise is that I didn’t know or understand enough! So for those who are not in the know 

“Perimenopause refers to the time before menopause when the ovaries begin to decline in function and continues until menopause.” 

My three options at the time were I could

  • Go down the herbal route, but knew nothing about being peri, I wouldn’t know where to start and to be honest I didn’t have the patience to go down the trial and error route, hoping I find a miracle herbal cure. 
  • I could take HRT, that was a no goer, I had heard about the cancer scare associated with that. 
  • I could up my current dose of Prozac from 20 – 40 ml, 

I opted for the latter and for over a year it worked. I had been taking the increased dose of prozac and it appeared to be doing the trick, well it was until about 6-9 months ago (to be honest it could have been longer as the changes are often subtle) 

Nah neither did I? Well, all I can say is “I don’t know what I did in a past life to deserve this fucking penance!”

The silence angers me – Since my diagnosis, I cannot tell you how many women I have spoken in private or on a one to one who have or who are experiencing similar symptoms. I feel like I have stumbled on a new phenomenon and the more I learn about it, the more I read the stories on the closed private forums the more I am consumed with a mixture of shock and amazement that nobody talks about it and the silence angers me!

I have suffered from dark bouts of depression brought on by varying symptoms including, brain fog, Alcohol free hangovers, waking up swimming in sweat, feeling constantly knackered, despite trying my best to look after myself, swollen tits, swollen waistline one minute I feel like kate moss the next if feel like Jabba the Hutt, (I swear someone is inflating and deflating me just for the laguh) you name it I think I have gone through it over the past few months!

I have struggled to get my head around this peri shit, I am slowly learning and understanding that everyone is different and the symptoms will vary from woman to woman, which makes diagnosing, treating and managing the symptoms difficult or in my case very fucking challenging. It has taken a while and it is still sinking in that my body is going through some complex changes but knowing and understanding more about it, has helped a lot. 

So I wanted to share some of the things that I have done that have helped – I have talked about it, in fact, I think I have done a lot of peoples fucking head in, but to be perfectly honest it isn’t in my nature to keep my gob shut! 

I write I keep a journal, as well as being private and a chance to offload my shit? it has become invaluable in terms of understanding my symptoms and more importantly recording them, which is essential for me because i am all over the shop!

I am now learning to accept and validate my symptoms instead of hiding behind them, out of fear that no one will understand! becuase all the really matters is that “I know and I understand”

Go see your doctor!!!!!

I was invited to a closed Facebook group called Totes Merry Peri – this has been a lifeline, a chance to talk to over 122,000 other women all of whom appear to be going through similar experiences –

There is loads of information online – here are a few links I have found helpful 

https://www.menopauseandme.co.uk/en-gb/menopause-and-me/stages-and-symptoms-of-menopause/peri-menopause

https://www.medicinenet.com/perimenopause/article.htm

I am passionate about more people understanding addiction, I always have been and always will, I will openly talk about my own and fathers addiction, in the hope that it will help remind others that they are not alone and help shake the stigma and shame that clouds what is a serious issue in our society. And for those who know me, they know that it is hard to silence me, after all, it has taken years to “find my voice” and have the courage to speak up when others won’t or find they can’t.

Hence why I am sharing this post – It’s tough being a woman, let’s face it #shithappens and I firmly believe that by simply making and taking some time back to reflect #haveawordwiyasen or talk and confide with friends, family, connecting with people in a similar situation as yourself is a stark reminder that you are not alone…

Try not to be afraid of who you truly are and remember, if you would like to subscribe to more post, please go to https://www.shithappens.me.uk/contact/ and sign up OR leave me your email. If you liked the post please share, if you didn’t, then do nothing and that’s ok too

Love Fordy x

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