For most women, the transition from fertility to postmenopausal life can be emotional.
The change of menopause signals many things to a woman: It is a reminder of aging, and it marks a significant endpoint to childbearing years.
For women with children, it may be an omen of an empty nest. For women without children, it may bring up feelings of regret or “what if”?
Menopause also puts some stress on the body, which can compound the emotional aspects of the change.
On Being Postmenopausal: Listen to Roseanne
In 2011, comedian, actress, and writer Roseanne Barr penned a positive manifesto on menopause for Newsweek called the “Joys of Menopause” at the age of 59.
Among other things, she noted how sorry she felt for Madonna (who previously dated 24-year-old guy back when she was 53 years old). Roseanne said that she was beyond sex and the boundaries of biology.
“Sailing through the dictatorship of the body, the pulsing, plodding meat machine of it all, from that first shock at puberty, through birthing, nursing, raising, and letting go of grown children, you have reached uncharted territory, dangerous and mysterious,” Barr wrote. “Brain space seems more liberated now. Time to kick back a little, to observe more, to feel less fear and more connection.”
Finding a Purpose in Life Past 50
It seems for many women, we spend the first half of our lives trying to please others, whether it is our parents, men, or our children. Once we have gone over the hump of 50, we can now move into a new phase.
Some women call this the time of the “crone” or “wise woman,” the older woman who is no longer the maid or mother.
This is a time where a woman can be renewed, unshackled from past expectations.
It’s not necessarily a time to lay down and die, but to start fresh.
What is your new purpose? Could it be spending some time alone, polishing the soul through deep, rich periods of meditation and study?
Perhaps, it is a time of community outreach, of being a teacher or a mentor to younger women and girls.
Maybe this time is a time of peak power, where the female executive finally gets to be CEO and run the major corporation.
3 Tips on Navigating Menopause
Every woman will handle menopause a little differently. But why not try to make it a celebration of your life?
1. Keep a Journal
Write down not only things you want to record but consider using a section for brainstorming.
2. Start Your Bucket List
Did you always want to attempt to climb Everest? There’s no time like the present!
3. Relax and Enjoy Life
Get your favorite cup of tea, a good book, and a nice lounge chair to sit in with a view.
Menopause Can be an Amazing Time
Being old can be scary, but there truly is something liberating about aging gracefully and going beyond youthful vanity. You can focus on being yourself – eccentric, quirky, and self-contained. You can choose to wear red shoes with purple socks and not have to worry if they are in fashion.