Is Your Menopause Clock Ticking?

by Holly Osterman

How much of our lives do we spend wondering whether we’ll get our period, how long it’s going to last and when it’ll be over? Well, when you consider that the average woman has between 350 and 500 periods over the course of her lifetime, it can leave a lot of time to manage it, worry about it, and obsess over it.

But when it’s finally over, and you’ve begun your journey through menopause, will you miss the monthly insanity? Or will you feel it ended too soon?

If you asked a hundred women, you’d probably get a hundred different answers. And a lot of mixed feelings. For some of us, the thought of a period-free life can be liberating. No more drama about getting pregnant. No need to carry around tampons. We see a whole new world with endless possibilities. Ahh, freedom.

Maybe, though, you’d feel a sense of loss. You might feel like less of a woman because, after all, that’s what women do. We have periods, make babies, and grow the world’s population, right? We all make the transition, but it can leave us confused and frustrated.

What if you wanted more children? Just knowing that you’ve been stripped of that option is sometimes sad and complicated. Sure, we know it’s inevitable. But it would be nice if it happened on our terms and when we were ready for it. And it seems like everywhere we look—and I mean everywhere—there’s a pregnant lady or a baby in a stroller.

So what’s a period-free woman to do? First, stop and assess the situation. There are plenty of things in our lives that we have little or no control over. Menopause is one of them. It’s going to happen whether we’re prepared for it or not. Consider a proactive approach. As soon as you get an inkling that things are beginning to change, develop a plan for living a healthy and active life. The usual stuff. Exercise, eat right, and take care of both your body and your mind. You need to be your own number one priority.

Finally, recognize that it takes many women a couple of years to make this transition. Why? Maybe it’s because we need time. Time to process, time to plan and time to find our new selves. So do yourself a favor. Embrace the change and make time for you.

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