REAL LIFE STORY | Five years ago, perimenopause floored me. I had no idea what was happening. The toughest thing about this transition has been the effect that it has had on my marriage. My husband has been so supportive, but the mood swings and bouts of intense anger have turned me at times into an argumentative and very irritable woman. I also kept saying that I wanted a divorce because I simply couldn’t deal with the day-to-day commitments of being in my marriage, I felt that I couldn’t cope any longer.
The drastic decision to move out of the family home was the only way that I believe our marriage lasted. It gave me the time to be alone and literally take stock and come to terms with what my hormones were inflicting on me. Then, in 2020, I got the courage to move to a village in France, where I knew no one, in search of a new life.
Something was driving me, calling deep within me. I drove – never having driven in France before – for hundreds of miles in search of something else. My marriage wasn’t working and I had a whisper inside me for a few years that had turned into a scream: “Is this it?”. I wasn’t happy, I was living in the comfort of my discomfort.
I am now living as a digital nomad in a motor home running three businesses at the same time. I have met an amazing man and feel joyful more than I have for many years.
It has taken a lot of inner work to get here.
The best thing to come out of my menopause journey so far is that I have had to dig deep and look inside myself to acknowledge what I need and want from my life. It has made my journey of self-discovery extremely important. In Japan, they call the menopause the ‘Second Spring’. I absolutely adore this. It gives me and hopefully, lots of other women going through this phase of life hope that there is a light at the end of, what sometimes feels like a very long tunnel.
Midlife can be a time of enormous change. We can struggle to cope with the feelings that come with the hormonal changes happening in our bodies. I know many women who didn’t know they were going through the menopause because they have not been educated about the symptoms. Like most of us, it comes as a complete shock, but it is also a time of life when we can reemerge, stronger and with more vibrancy and passion than before.
I believe we have to be willing to embrace the process. It can be a tough one but the rewards on the ‘other side’ can be wonderful.
I have now found my ‘WHY’. Yes, It’s taken a lot of courage to leave my home and family, but I’m now a midlife adventurer on a mission to empower midlife women to live their next chapter on their terms, with more joy and fewer ‘shoulds‘. I truly believe that leaning into this time of our lives, doing the work and living a life aligned with our core values is the way to find contentment.
Midlife and menopause although challenging and at times very dark, is the perfect opportunity to re-emerge….and live your best chapter yet.