Roses are Red, Violets are Blue… and Sometimes, So Am I

Posted on July 1, 2008. Filed under: Inspiring Each Other | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Many of you may remember my cyber friend, Mags, of the Magnolia Diaries. I’d asked her to be my guest blogger a couple of weeks back, as I consider her thoughts on a woman’s journey through peri-menopause to be so helpful. She has recently honored me once again with a mention in her blog and I’d like to share it with you. Mags words reflect her courage, compassion, honesty, and feeling. She’s an amazing writer…

I stopped in over at Feisty Side of Fifty to see what Eileen was up to and linked over to another blog to listen to an interview she did regarding menopause.  It was interesting and of course fun to hear her voice since we’ve only “chatted” via the Internet.

I appreciate Eileen’s point of view.  She is an optimist and chooses to see the bright side in life and to focus on the positive even in the midst of difficulties.  That is a healthy attitude to be sure.  But, I also found myself relating terribly to the interviewer,Bevery Mahone as she discussed the difficulties she had with depression while going through perimenopause.

Outside of the insomnia, I would have to say that the depression and mood swings have been one of the worst components of perimenopause for me.  So, when she talked about how it sapped her energy and enthusiasm for life, boy could I understand.  And it does.

I wish we could just take a happy pill and get through it all, but unfortunately, it is a time of life that we must walk through to get through.  There are no short cuts and there are no easy routes.  If you are one of the approximately 20% of women who have had no symptoms with your perimenopause, say your “amens’ and your ”hallelujahs” now, because the other 80% of us have likely taken them on for you.

I had to face up to the fact that my mood swings and depression were out of my hands and resorted to antidepressants for about two years.  I believe Time Magazine even did a piece on menopause and it was said that antidepressants were one of the best and easiest things you could do.  I concur.  It was difficult for me to take them because being the control freak that I am. I didn’t want to think that I couldn’t “will” myself out of the emotional ups and downs I was experiencing.

But the truth was, I couldn’t.  So, I swallowed my pride and the pill along with it and things improved greatly for me.  I am happy to say that I am beyond those very difficult days, but I still have the depressive, blues every month. 

When it hits, there is nothing I can do but ride it out.  I know what it is and that is helpful.  Walking helps and chocolate and wine don’t hurt either, but for the most part, just letting it run it’s course has been the best choice of action for me.

Depression is one of those things that people don’t like to admit to.  When everyone else around you seems to be coping, it is very difficult to feel that you are not.  But, the truth is, depression (and I’m not talking clinical depression) that we deal with in perimenopause is chemically and hormonally based.  You are not a failure at life if you struggle with it. 

I think sometimes just knowing that you are not alone in the struggle is extremely helpful as well.  So, menopause mavens, if you find yourself battling depression and can’t seem to shake it……..you are most definitely not alone and you are always welcome to dump your blues here at The Magnolia Diaires.   

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7 Responses to “Roses are Red, Violets are Blue… and Sometimes, So Am I”

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Eileen,

You are such a love. Thanks for hosting The Magnolia Diaries! Pass the love around. :)

I entered a Twilight Zone of emotional ups and downs that shook me to the core. I was always to “in control” that the temper that came with my hot flashes was like a monster let out of a cage!
I’m finally through that particular phase and the hot flashes and emotions are manageable but I pity the people who happened upon me during an episode, lol.

I have come through menopause, fairly unscathed, but not without endless hot flashes, mood swings, depression, bleeding for a full year, the whole nine yards. I agree that it helps to realize that sometimes we do need medication to balance the raging hormonal wars. It also helps to realize it is a normal part of life and it lasts only for a season. This is one of the best and happiest times of my life. In retrospect, the best advice I can give regarding pre, peri, or any other stage of menopause, is to keep reminding yourself that it is temporary.

I agree Pam. It is temporary, but much like adolescence, perimenopause seems like it swallows your entire world and it “seems” it is forever.

Being on the far side of the worst of my symptoms, I see the wisdom and truth in your words. Yet, I feel a deep empathy for those women who are following in our footsteps and who haven’t yet been able to clearly idenitify “what is wrong” if you will.

One of the biggest things I hear women say, and I certainly said it myself is……”Am I going crazy????”

That is exactly how the tumultuous upheaval of perimenopause feels. What was once a life full of predictability and “sameness” is now a crapshoot every month.

Those of us who are beyond perimenopause, or close to the end (as myself) can offer hope and a helping hand to our sisters before us.

Yes, this too shall pass……..

At 47, I often feel as though I’ve been ‘ripped off’, as some say “Oh Debbie, you are too young to be going through the ‘change’, are you SURE??” This also from a couple of doctors, who seemed to look at me as if I were imagining things! If ONLY! I believe we all know our bodies, better than any doctor, and I knew mine was experiencing the symptoms of menopause, but how was I to handle it with no support? Along came a God-send, along came the boomer divas!
Through each woman and her own experience, I have been better educated & able to face it with more optimism, knowing this is all a part of the woman’s cycle….hot flashes, insomnia,night sweats, headaches, mood swings, weight gain and depression,all the symptoms I have endured but also those I now embrace! Yes, EMBRACE! Better to accept everything as the role of being a woman, than as some cruel punishment, which was my first reaction. I too have now been placed on anti-depressants, apparently this will ease the suffering? I am not sure, but I do know my attitude towards my body has changed,just as it had when I began my first menstrual cycle. It IS who we are-having a hot flash isn’t the end, it is merely a sign of my maturity and the wonder of being a female species!

I lived through the symptoms of menopause. One thing troubling to me was being badgered by doctors to take hormone replacement therapy. I never did think it was a good idea, and I’m grateful for that.

I write a boomer consumer blog called The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide at http://boomersurvive-thriveguide.typepad.com.

Rita

Ok, ANYONE who has ever passed through a Magnolia,stopped at a Magnolia,or worst of fates LIVED in a Magnolia you will forever be marked. There is something about a Magnolia–ever seen ERueka? Well we don’ have any brain surgens that I know of but we are a whole town of Good Ole Boys…and gals.
I am a almost 50 that has lived in this Magnolia and have seen stuff that would make a New Yorker laugh and blush. We do love our town I guess because we keep comming back. So check out a Magnolia…there is one around your somewhere…..Mine is in ARkansas….and BOy oh boy its a real treat…ya see the grass grow and everything…..


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