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Posts Tagged ‘menopause’

The menopause saga continues folks and let me tell you, it gets weirder and weirder. I have to laugh, because my only other choice is to cry myself into a padded room. And let me start by saying that men definitely got off easier (again) on the whole aging thing. I mean, at mid-life they just buy an expensive sports car and – bam – they’re over it and move on into their golden years.

Women however, we experience mid-life differently. Most get the “usual” physical symptoms, hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, bulging bellies. But not me my friends. No sirree, not me, although my belly does bulge a little. I have all of the “other” symptoms. I ones you never hear about.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Let me explain. For awhile now I’ve been experiencing some strange little things in my body. Things like a sore thumb one day, a sore wrist the next three, creaking knees the following week. No injury, no apparent reason for the pain. And, sometimes while I’m driving, my fingers go numb; my feet often “go to sleep” when I’m watching TV. I’ve also been having extreme vision issues, issues not correctable (or explainable) by my eye doctor. I wear a different bi-focal contact lens in each eye and I still have to wear glasses sometimes. And then there’s days when I just can’t seem to see at all, my vision is so blurry. And my eyes hurt. They feel dry and gritty and they twitch. A lot. But then at night, when I lay down to try to sleep, they water like crazy, soaking my pillow on both sides of my head. What the heck? What is this madness?

Where am I going with this? I’ll tell you. I did some research on WebMD.com for dry eyes and joint pain. Both list possible causes for the ailment and potential remedies. But way down on the list for each problem I found that these conditions may be the result of menopause. Say what? Dry eyes and joint pain are menopause symptoms?

Apparently so. And this created a burning need to research menopause a little deeper, leading me to a long list of “unusual” symptoms of menopause. Holy cow! I have more than half of those “unusual” symptoms. And what’s even funnier are the suggested homeopathic treatments for the symptoms.

Here’s an abbreviated list of lesser known menopause symptoms: loss of bladder control, extreme fatigue, inability to concentrate, tingling extremities, irregular heartbeat, anxiety, weight gain, hair loss, brittle nails, and bloating.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Here’s a partial list of cures: drink lots of water, exercise, get lots of rest.

Okie dokie. Let’s just back the apple cart up a little bit here shall we?

My symptom is loss of bladder control and you tell me to “drink lots of water?” Really? How is this helpful? I cannot sleep more than two hours at night and you’re telling me that the cure is to “get lots of rest?” Well duh. And wouldn’t that be nice? And you say that more exercise will cure the weight retention and bloating issues? Yeah, maybe under normal conditions, but, I am so freaking tired there is no way in hell I’m going to exercise more.  I can barely get through one 1-hour zumba class a week. Most of my exercise these days consists of getting up from my two-hour nap each night.

And I might experience anxiety. You think? I’m pretty sure that getting only two hours of sleep each night might make me a little — how shall I say this — tense. Not to mention my hair is thinning at an alarming rate. And my heartbeat is so irregular I think I’m having a heart attack and in fact, consider waking my husband up to have him drive me to the emergency room. I’m pretty sure, this symptom would make anyone anxious.

This article is really funny.

I little farther down on this ever-so-helpful site I read that menopause can last anywhere from twelve months to twelve years. ARE. YOU. KIDDING. ME? Twelve freaking years?!? Nothing anxious about that. Can’t I just buy a Corvette and be rid of it?

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

But here is the kicker my friends; the suggestion that makes me laugh the hardest and longest. The article recommends avoiding alcohol. Seriously? I have 52 things wrong with me and if I drink enough water and get enough exercise and rest in twelve years they MAY go away. But, in those twelve years I’m not to have a drink? Like that’s really going to happen. If there is one thing I really, truly NEED at this very moment in my life, it is alcohol. Please dear God, let me never be out of alcohol. (Unless you bring me a Corvette, then I might reconsider.)

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

So, I know it’s a bit tongue-in-cheek, but seriously, if you read about your symptoms on the web, you may be enlightened. Or mislead. Or entertained. I was definitely entertained at the end of my on-line research. However, I am a little less worried about all of the little crazy symptoms I’m having. There’s light at the end of the twelve-year tunnel that they may go away. Seems I’m not having a heart attack, I’m simply anxious. And I’m definitely going to try staying up all night exercising and drinking water since, Lord knows, I certainly won’t be sleeping.

So (everybody raise your glass), here’s to aging, hair loss, peeing your pants, being awake all night, slightly overweight, anxious and blurry-eyed. I thank the good Lord every single day that I am generally healthy, happy, mobile, employed, and do not have some horrible debilitating disease, or chronic condition impacting my life in ways too unspeakable to mention here. If getting old means having a few aches and pains and anxiety along the way, so be it. I’ll take every day I am blessed to live. Even without a Corvette.

How about you readers: have you ever experienced any unusual or unexplainable condition that worried you? Do you try to self-diagnose? Do you rely on information you read on the web? Ever find a silly suggestion to fix a problem?

And, if I haven’t told you lately, I am blessed to call you all friends and thankful for your support.

Word of the Day: Nide

Fun fact about me: If it were practical and affordable I would drive an expensive sports car every single day. (And that’s not just the menopause talking.)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, May 2015. Photos courtesy Google Images.

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If you’re hot and you know it raise your hand.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Oh, me. (hand raised high) Me, me, me, me, me. I’m hot and I know it. (This is me — in my mind — a really hot chick.)

But not all the time. Most of the time I’m the same temperature as everyone else. But sometimes, I’m raging hot. Wildfire hot. Exploding gas hot. Oh, I’m not on fire, I’m just having a hot flash.

Sometimes those hot flashes happen at night, while I’m in bed, all cozy in my fuzzy jammies. Those night time hot flashes are the worst. Wake up all wringing wet. Have to strip naked and take a cold shower. What kind of madness is this?

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

(This is me — in reality — a really hot chick.)

Yeah, I know. I’m as surprised as you are. What the hell happened? What happened to the woman in the yellow dress?

Well, we all age and there’s not a damn thing any of us can do to stop it so we might as well share a laugh about it — right? So, here’s a mash-up video from Chonda Pierce about women of a certain age. I hope you enjoy it. Feel free to laugh out loud.

How are you aging? Gracefully? Or kicking and screaming? What do you do when “those” moments hit? I’d love to learn any tips and tricks for staying comfortable and sane through this “phase.”

Fun fact about me: I older I get, the more adventurous I get.

Word of the Day: Theurgy

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, November 2014. Photos courtesy Google Images. Video courtesy YouTube.

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Turning 50 was going to be huge; a really big deal; a cause for true celebration. And the day itself was all of that and more. I am now a half a century old and well on my way to becoming an old bitty.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Because I like you all, I feel it’s only fair to let you all in on a secret. Here’s what happens after the celebration, when reality sets in:

Hello and welcome to 50. We need to let you know that your driver’s license is going to expire this year and because it’s been awhile—34 years to be exact—we’re going to need to you re-take that written test. But, we’re not going to give you a new picture so there is a bright side, you’ll still look 49. (And because no one ever asks, I will still weigh 110 pounds.)

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

To make up for the possible loss of your driving privileges you will be issued an AARP card which won’t allow you to legally drive, but it might get you a nickel discount on Depends at your local supermarket and possibly a free cup of coffee at McDonald’s.

And hey, more good news, you now qualify for a colonoscopy, so don’t forget to get that little treat down on the books right away. And, if it hasn’t already done so, your vision will be changing. That’s right you’ll graduate from slightly blind to almost completely blind which will require the use of contact lenses and bifocals unless you’re trying to read something, in which case use whatever means are available to help accomplish that feat. Good luck with that because things will start to look like this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Of special note, just for the ladies, you will also most likely experience some hormonal changes in your body. These are perfectly natural changes that every woman endures so just deal with them in whatever fashion works best for you. You might find sleeping a challenge, and possibly have moments when your body feels like it’s on fire. These moments will pass so just smile and open a bottle of vodka. You may occasionally want to rip someone’s head of and feed it to the dog, but we encourage you to simply take a deep breath and walk slowly away from the thing causing you the stress. During such times you may want to swallow a couple of Valium with your vodka.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

And finally, don’t despair when the pounds seem to pile on around your mid section and your hair starts falling out. These are natural occurrences and are not dire situations that require medical help. Add to the Valium and vodka about 140 ounces of chocolate and a dozen Oreo cookies on top of your largest mixing bowl full of ice cream. That should do the trick.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

We want you to know that you can and should continue all of your normal activities, like working your ass off and paying taxes for another dozen years or so. The social security people won’t come a’knockin’ for at least another twelve years so use this time to keep putting that fifty cents into your 401(K) each month. By the time those social security checks start rolling in you’ll have amassed quite a little savings account to supplement your meager government income. And with all the money you’ll be saving with those AARP discounts, you just might make ends meet if you never go to a movie or eat in a restaurant again.

Image courtesy Google Images

Image courtesy Google Images

Oh, and if we haven’t already said it—welcome to 50. Enjoy your golden years!

How about you my friends, any surprises as you age? Any words of wisdom to share?

Word of the Day:  Doglegs (no you don’t get them when you turn 50)

Fun Fact About Me:  I used to hate wearing shoes; now I rarely go barefoot.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, September 2015. Photos courtesy Google Images. Sarcasm courtesy Patricia Rickrode.

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Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

For the most part, I have been blessed with good health. Unlike a lot of people, I suffer from very few maladies and the couple that do plague me are easily managed. As I’ve gotten older; however, I’ve been bothered more and more regularly by a horrible condition known as insomnia.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I read up on this condition and tried to pay attention to the events immediately preceding its onslaught. I try to avoid all of the “bad” things you’re supposed to stay away from before bed: too much caffeine, too much sugar, eating too late, too much alcohol, too much excitement, blah, blah, blah. Nothing seems to make a difference. The only thing I can really blame for this bothersome condition is the dreaded “M” word. No – not marriage, although that does play a role in this condition from time to time. I’m referring to (cue scary music) menopause.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

My doctor prescribed sleeping pills for those nights when dreaming seems to be an ideal rather than a reality, but I hate having to resort to chemical aids just to get a good night’s sleep. No matter how weary I am when I crawl into bed, at least twice a week or more, I wake up after a couple of hours and proceed to lay there – wide awake – thinking of everything under the sun whether it’s relative to my life or not. And it’s like my brain is on speed because I can’t even stay focused on any one topic. I flit from one subject to another faster than Mario Andretti ever crossed a finish line. It’s like the worst case of ADD imaginable.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I try not to complain, especially since there are so many worse afflictions that I could have, but after three sleepless nights in a row, I’m about ready to strangle someone. Seriously, how long does this insomnia phase last? I’m so ready for it to be over.

How do you, my lovely readers, deal with insomnia? Any tricks or suggestions for getting back to sleep? If I wake up after midnight I have to decide – soon – whether to take a pill or not. If I take one of those magic sleeping pills after about one o’clock in the morning, I’m useless until, at the very least, noon the following day. That’s not possible when I’m expected to show up at a professional office at nine o’clock looking fresh as a daisy and ready to put on my happy “let’s solve your problems today,” face. Most mornings I just look like this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Do you ever suffer from insomnia? What’s your cure? I’d love to know. I thought about even trying this:

Until next week, here’s hoping you all have peaceful nights with lots of quality REM sleep. Sweet dreams!

Word of the Day: Obeah

Fun fact about me: I recently discovered that I’m quite proficient at corn hole. Who knew?

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, June 2014. Photos courtesy Google Images. Video courtesy YouTube.

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