Tuesday, September 16, 2014

So, post-menopause hey.

I wish post-menopause had some post in it. As in finished. Instead all that's finished are periods and baby-dreams.  But symptoms, oy veh, I have them coming out the wazoo. Literally.

Why is menopause education not included in general biology education. Seriously. We just went to the s.ex-ed class for tLG and there was no mention of the End of Days. Just that female fertility would run out in 30 years or so, like someone magically pushes a button and it's all OFF. Well, it's not and I am under-prepared for this.

My GP has put me on hormone replacement therapy.

DID YOU HEAR THAT? ME? I AM 42!!! HRT IS FOR OL' LADEEEZ. (PS, no offense intended for anyone older than me or on HRT.)

Apparently, it'll take 2 or 3 weeks to kick in, apparently. So in the meantime this is how it is.
Let me tell you what's in store, all you lovely ladies out there reading.

Night sweats and hot flushes/flashes (who the hell knows which terminology is correct).
Oh My Fucking DoG. I had read about this but absolutely nothing can prepare a perpetually cold person for the anti-joy of this internal infernal heat.  I actually thought to myself (pre-hot-flushes-actually-occurring) "Oh, maybe it would be nice to be hot".

No. It is not nice. In the space of a second, I transition from comfortable to OH MY GOD GET THESE CLOTHES OFF ME I AM DYING OF HEAT. In all seriousness. And at night it's worse, so I sleep in 45 minute stretches, punctuated by throwing off of all bedclothes and cooling too far. To say, I'm tired is an understatement.

Mmm, imagine PMS. Forever. I am doing a lot of time outs (sending myself to another room) and deep breathing.

You know where I mean. And it's not only my external should-be-moist membranes, it's dry deep inside. Like some kind of internal (infernal) Gobi.  I also experienced an overgrowth of healthy flora and had to bomb my body to control it all. Still too scared to try horizontal folk dancing with The Big Guy. Last 3 times were painful. Even with aids. Poor Big Guy is getting a rough deal out of this.

That'll do for now.

I'll keep you posted, I'm sure you're desperate to hear the next instalment.

PS. Some women do not experience many (or any) symptoms of menopause. They are lucky, and when my Mama told me she was one of them I wanted to poke her eyes out with a stick. Just sayin'.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

"That's it; that's all she wrote"

Meaning: An articulation of a sudden and unforeseen end to one's hopes or plans.

But it wasn't unseen, nor unexpected. And yet.

My period is 2 weeks late but I'm not pregnant. Instead what I am is post-menopausal.

FSH = 90.6
Estrogen <44

They are the levels found in a person who no longer ovulates and will no longer menstruate.

I'm 42.

I knew it was coming, but I didn't REALLY know it. Not in my bones. Not in my heart. Certainly not in my hopes. But now there is no chance for the famous "just forget about it" baby.

My realm now is one of hot flashes, vag.inal atrophy, vag.inal dryness, irritability, mood swings, insomnia blah blah blah.

Fucking life is unfair so much of the time.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Did Tough Mudder - not fit, can't run - WTF?

Hello all,

I did Tough Mudder on the weekend!

A TOUGH FUCKING MUDDER! 20km, 18 obstacles, tons of mud.

I'm not a fitness freak, I've got fibromyalgia, a neck/upper back that's inclined to seize up and arm muscles that alternate between strong and weak unexpectedly.  I don't like splinters or being rained on when I'm clothed.  Haha, why did I sign up for TM? Because it looked like awesome fun and I thought I'd be able to get into jogging.  

But ... I'm not a jogger! After signing up for TM, I started to do Couch-to-5K from September 2013, I managed to do 6 weeks of it and got to running 20 mins straight. But then I hurt both my knees (BOTH of them) and had to stop running. For good.

Here's how I managed on the day:
1. I had the most awesome team with me. 15 of us did it, varying ages (19-51) and levels of fitness.  All incredible people, incredibly helpful. We all agreed we'd do what we could, skip what we couldn't and have a blast getting muddy. We did that alright!

2. I wore long compression pants, a long sleeved compression top.  I carried a camelback full of water, pain killers and a lip balm. I wore the running shoes I was used to (they scrubbed up fine afterwards). I also wore a tight pair of these light gardening gloves (they have a textured grippy palm) and cut the fingertips off so water would drain out.  This was so I could grip the wooden obstacles without my killer fear of splinters!  They worked a treat and kept my hands warm to boot.  (It was totally freezing on the day. That was seriously the worst part, so cold my teeth chattered for many kilometres.)

3. I alternated between walking and jogging slowly. So I paced myself pretty well, by the end I was pretty much only walking, as was the rest of my team. But I could still walk! And climb! And jog a little!  Unlike two days later when walking was very painful :)

4. I took paracetamol half way through.

5. I skipped a few obstacles I knew would damage me. I'm looking at you Balls to the Wall, Funky Monkey, Leap of Faith, Just the Tip and Everest. (Our whole team skipped the latter two.) My upper shoulders/arms/neck can't take much so I was sensible. Plus I need my arms and neck to type my thesis, so I was pleased to do three quarters of the obstacles. And I managed ones I didn't think I could - like Hold your Wood and Glory Blades.

6. I didn't let anyone yank me by the arms to help me up, I accepted boosts wherever possible though.

7. I had so much fun! My favourite obstacles were the Ladder to Hell, Twinkle Toes, Mud Mile, Artic Enema (I was so hot at the start and it was the first obstacle - awesome to jump into cold water).  I did both the electricity shockers and all the rest of the course.

So, if you think you couldn't possible do Tough Mudder because you can't run, or are unfit, or have a bad back.  Actually, you might just be able to do it :) (I am not a doctor so don't take this as medical advice, it's just my personal experience.)