After going through this traumatic entry into midlife I knew something had to change. I just wasn’t quite sure what kind of change had to take place. You see, I looked to my Hubby and basically started there. I felt he was the one who had to make a change. He had to start looking at me through a different light, right? After all, I’m a different woman than the one he married 19 years ago. He had to accept my differences, my quirkiness and it all started with him. I felt he had to “handle” me differently than before.
Now don’t get me wrong, Mr. R is a wonderful husband, friend, father and provider. He was my island! I felt if I let one foot off the island my whole world would fall apart. He cried with me, held me, picked me off the floor when I couldn’t get up, supported me and, most of all, never stopped loving me. Even though I knew there were times when he wanted to sell me to the highest bidder just to get a break from me and my midlife. I knew he wouldn’t get much for me. A basket of cherries yields a much higher price than a basket case. Am I right?
After many challenging arguments, discussions and Mr. R walking on eggshells on a daily basis. He tried … he tried with all his might to make the changes that I deemed fit for my survival. It just wasn’t working. There was no change and I still felt miserable.
I sat back and thought what else would need to change to make me happy with myself. I came up with my surroundings, my home, as this was my main place of stay as a homemaker. Looking around I saw some much needed remodeling needed to be done. So off to Lowe’s I went with wallet in hand. I began my remodeling project with a fury. If it reminded me of any of my strife, I replaced it, repainted it, repurposed it or simply donated it. But it HAD TO GO! I had to make a change! I became a minimalist. If it created chaos in my mind it had to be cleaned up, reorganized or simply ditched. But I had to stop the chaos in my head. My remodeling project and eliminating the chaos was complete. I sat back and patted myself on the back and said, “Good job, Mrs. R, you have finally made a change.” Uuummm, not so much.
Although, I loved my newly remodeled home, I still did not love myself. I still had family illness, addiction, death and menopause creeping in through the newly painted walls and seeping from the new wood floors. But, I did realize that by eliminating the chaos of clutter and disorganization I was able to breathe just a little bit easier. I felt like I had shed a few pounds. I felt just a little bit lighter but I was still miserable. Not knowing where to turn at this point, I sought the comfort of my beloved Folly Beach and Congaree River as often as I could. I was always happy being there. I love to connect with Mother Earth and ground my toes in the sand and surf, feel the warmth of the river rocks and breathe the fresh air.
It wasn’t until I took this picture at the Congaree River that I finally had my “Ah Ha!” moment. Remembering a quote from Cher from long ago …
I won’t be able to do what I’m doing forever. There aren’t that many scripts floating around for 50 year old chicks. -Cher
I knew I couldn’t keep doing what I was doing forever. I found the answers lied within myself. I had to rewrite my own script to fit this 50+ year old chick. I was at the helm. The change had to come from within me. My personal reinvention had begun. I was going to take back my life without sacrificing those I love so dearly. Because, I can’t be an effective role model without being the best me I can be!
I know for certain that I am not the only 50+ year old human being on this planet that has suffered with the issues that I bring up here. These issues are all apart of being human. We are equipped with the knowledge inside us to take the next step, make the next change.
The first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance. -Nathaniel Branden
Once you realize that it’s time to make a change the hardest part is determining where to start. Using the quote above, the first step is awareness. So just making the realization that change is needed is actually the first step, aaawww now the second step would naturally be acceptance.
Based on the issues that I was facing at that point in my life, I felt that the first thing I needed to work on was getting my menopause symptoms under control. So I thought let’s start there. First, I have a little story to tell.
While at the market one day, I was checking out and my “meno” brain refused to function. I was writing out my check and totally forgot how to do it! I have written many checks in my life but that day I completely forgot! I got flustered, embarrassed, angry at myself! My very kind cashier, who appeared to be around my age, recognized my frustration and immediately jumped in to assist me. Now, I was even more embarrassed but thankful for her kindness. After processing my transaction, she lightly touched my hand and said to me, “we have to be kind to ourselves” and gave me a reassuring smile that it will be alright. I bolted out of the store, went to my car and cried. It wasn’t until later on when I heard her voice in my head telling me “we have to be kind to ourselves” and that’s where I started. I had to accept myself as I was and be kind to myself for my imperfections!
Are you suffering with menopause?
See you in the Comments!