Injection Number Two.
Menopause continued with a second round last Monday. When I made the decision to begin six months of medically-induced menopause, my doctor shared that the side effects would take a few weeks to surface. The injections are monthly, so when I arrived for my second shot, she was curious whether I had experienced any side effects yet.
“I think I had my first hot flash this morning,” I replied. She smiled, nodded, and welcomed me to the club.
I’ve heard about this club. The one with night sweats, hot flashes, mood swings, and more. As an initiation of sorts, I asked my husband to read the experience of another woman who recently finished her own six month stint in menopause. He finished the post, looked over his iPad at me, and we both signed. “We got this,” he said. I may have detected a little fear in his voice, but it was quickly replaced by a grin. Then I remembered one of her side effects. “Increased bust size.” I smiled, too.
Do you believe in jinxes? I do. Which is why this post is essentially my dare to the universe.
Six weeks into treatment, I’m happy to say that menopause and I are pretty agreeable so far. The hot flashes are little reminders that I should avoid eating soup in crowded rooms, to dress in layers, and always keep a fan nearby. Sometimes that fan might just be a menu or an empty plastic soup bowl.
My sleep habits have changed slightly which can be modified once I find the best balance between the direction of the fan and number of covers. The good news is, the endometriosis pain has vanished. I traded that pain in for joint pain, however. Kneeling in the pew at church has become so painful that I can’t do it any more. Thankfully, I’ve made really good friends with a nun at church. She gave me her blessing and said that kneeling is less of a penance than it is honor and worship. In other words, if it hurts, don’t do it.
A friend invited me to a 5-day Hell Week during which I was challenged to a 21-minute plank. The pain radiating from my shoulders likely had more to do with my own physical abilities than the medication, but I copped out and took it easy. My husband and I did 21 minutes worth of planks in roughly 36 minutes. Yes, for those keeping count, I totally played the, “I’m on menopause medication” card. I dare you to challenge me.
Smaller issues will surface now and again like my dexterity (I’m dropping things more) and a little brain fog (what’s your name again?). But the largest concern I had regarding menopause hasn’t really surfaced. I was scared of uncontrollable emotions. Rage. I wanted nothing to do with it. My husband’s testimony might be different than mine, but I think I’ve been pretty level headed. Still, I’m asking my friends to draft their character references of me now while they remember me as a happy woman…