Lets begin where it ended.
Musings on life after cancer and during menopause
New phase and new chapter. The time of recovery that I craved for last year, that I focused on with a single minded obsession. That I was going to survive. And I am thankful to say I did indeed survive breast cancer. Yet its not all roses on this side of it. Recovery is a thing. It is huge.
I have spent much of the past few months berating myself with wagging fingers off to the stage right of my life. That I am not further along. That I am not back to working properly (really is that even a thing?). That I am still navigating the array of health issues. That I should. Should this and should that. God if it were only that simple. I pride myself that my cat is superbly well after last years story at the vet. He has a very shiny coat. As for me. Well, I am told I look amazing. Great. Thanks. Its good to hear. Forgive me for adding that on the inside I am falling apart physically not unlike the velveteen rabbit, if only you could see that bit. I know non of you mean to create a tension of guilt inside me, but nonetheless.
But this blog is not about this internal issue. Only as much as it is in the context of the other great hurdle I find myself lurching around. That of the mountain of menopause. Sharp intake of breath for this one.
The utter deconstruction of one’s identity as a women in this society and the realisation that those seemingly small things, those hormones, are in fact the biggest factor in our purpose, identity and drive. You only truly come to understand this when in the midst of the storm and quite honestly this has to stop. This conversation must be widened and made normal in our society. This is not something to shy from. It is instead the doorway to the rite of passage for eldership, should one choose. It is a powerful thing to be in the world as a post menopausal woman. That is what is on offer. But, as with the cancer story I have recently traversed, this journey has its own tidal waves and oddities.
Tussling with my skill set I am pulling apart the essence of myself to see if there is anything relevant left to offer the world, as I come through both cancer and menopause. Where do I fit? That is the existential question I reckon every peri menopausal woman is asking. Where the hell do I fit? And what the hell was I doing fitting in anyway?
The quick fix from the medical profession is for HRT. Which does support many women and give relief. Yet what if you are a women like me? One who cannot ever take HRT or one who doesn’t want to take it out of choice. For me a hormone driven cancer has taken this option off the table. So what now? Who is out there to support folk like me?
Once again its a journey of self discovery that I will share as I go. So far I am finding solace and value for myself in sharing about acupressure points on social media. Its freely given information and small steps. To what end I have no idea, but I do encourage you to dive into something you love and share it. It doesn’t matter what and it doesn’t matter where. Just find something that gives you a sense of value. A small thing. For me I get a thrill sitting in front of the video and pontificating on a topic I am passionate about. For you it may be pet sitting or making a window garden. Do it. Whatever it is. And share it with others. Share the small things. I would love to hear about them should you wish to tell me.
And just because I am in the midst of my menopause storm it doesn’t mean to say I don’t want to hear from my brothers. I see you all out there. You have your own struggles too. And even if you find me or other women a little sharp and abrasive at this juncture in our evolution, know that we do still love you. Its just the person we are is changing. Think of it as birth. We will return softer in our renewal. Some day soon.
So there you have it, my menopause began in earnest when my cancer story ended. Seems I don’t do things by half! Such is life.
Remember to love yourselves and that I love you all.