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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

News Flash! Hot Flash.

I have tried to stay away from this topic, as I am a card carrying member of Forever 21, and am now seeing my children grow up and pass me age. But its a bit hard to ignore the signs of aging these days.

And I DETEST it!!

When I was awoken from my small amount of sleep yet again last night, I decided right then and there to come out with this, big secret and get it over with....

Yes, world....I too, am having hot flashes.

This subject was never spoken of as I was growing up. I guess that it was taboo. I had no idea what this was or that women went through this kind of thing until I experienced it first hand as a young mother. There was a woman in my church that would constantly fan herself all through church. I thought that she was very hot-blooded, as she would do it even in the winter time and on extremely cold days.

Being the inquisitive person that I was, I went to the church gossip line and asked what was up with her. "Oh,....she has an extreme case of hot flashes," was the answer that I got.

Ok, so I had heard of that "M" word that we all dread, but then again I didn't know the particulars of what it entailed. But as I read a lot of women's fashion magazines, I started to see more ads displaying cures for this curious time of life----I was intrigued, but put it out of my mind.

Fast forward about....ummm....15....ok, well....20....years or so, and I start noticing certain changes in my body. And they are NOT good changes!

If you are like me, I couldn't wait until all my kids were grown so that I could get some sleep. Every mother knows that you wake up, on average, at least two times a night for something or somebody. Yes, ladies, I can see you all nodding in agreement---we've ALL been there if you have kids...

But when I finally got all of them beyond the point of waking up----it started.

At first I wasn't sure what was going on.

I would wake up first---wide awake----then feel a huge wave of heat go through my body, then after a few minutes, the cold sweat came, accompanied by a bit of a nauseous feeling.

So, off go the covers, as you try to cool down---then after the cold sweat breaks out, you pull them back on to warm up. Its a strange feeling, and one that is definitely annoying.

Ok, now you are wondering what the heck can I do about this? (Or maybe you don't care---but you will---someday) I thought the same thing. So, I read up a bit on it and of course, googled it to see the best way to deal with it. I should have asked my doctor, but I haven't been too good about seeing one for the last few years.

I decided to use the herbal method. It works pretty well. It works most of the time. It isn't always very reliable.

But then again, the next step would be to mess with my hormones, and I can't imagine all the things that could go wrong with that. So, I just keep waking up,-----sometimes several times a night, and take Valerian before I go to bed so that I can fall back to sleep.

So far, so good...its just that time of my life.

And they say that it only lasts about 7 years or so. That seems like a small amount of time....considering.

*Thanks so much for the use of the scary lady picture, word to your mother. It is truly the way I feel, encountering this exhausting new time in my life...


jennie w. said...

You're scaring me to death!

whirligigdaisy said...

Wow. What great things to look forward to, huh? I must say, though, that I just really needed to read your post (below) about your youngest son. It was just what I needed today. Beautiful.

Lynne's Somewhat Invented Life said...

I am so sorry. I was vegan during those years and didn't even know what a hot flash was. I have had a few mild ones since, especially if I eat meat but I symmpathize. Totally.

I still get no sleep. If my youngest is living away from home I can look forward to a middle-of-the-night phone call--oh joy--and if she's living home she never goes to bed but leaves the light in her bedroom on--to my Tiffany lamp--and I see the light under the door or else she is out and I worry if she is getting home all right. The fun never stops.

Vishous said...

Women just never get a break do they? Can I get a WITNESS?!?!

Mom n Pop Wilson said...

If it makes you feel any better, my night sweats have been few and far between for the past year. Maybe you only have one more year to go!:)

Kate Coveny Hood said...

DON'T mess around with your hormones. There are too many links between estrogen treatments and breast cancer. Sure there are plenty of success stories - but there are too many scary ones too. My mom really believes that her breast cancer was at least partially caused by hormone replacement therapy. It just can't be worth the risk... Of course - I can't really speak from real experience yet. But that can't be too far down the road...

Oh yeah - and my word verification is "ovens" - funny.

Brittany said...

I used to work in an office with many women, and I'm pretty sure ALL of them were going through menopause because the air conditioning was always on 65 degrees. I was 21, skinny, and FREEZING. I used to raise the thermostat when nobody was looking until people started leaving nasty notes. They must not have had the cold sweat symptoms. A (30-year-old) friend of mine on Goodreads just read a book called "What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Premenopause." I was thinking of checking it out.

Shawn said...

Thanks ladies, for all your advice and commiseration. It does help to be reminded that everyone will go through something similar and that, yes...this too...will pass someday.

And I am wondering if it is too late to check out that book, Brittany!

And I definitely am glad that I didn't do the hormone replacement route---just the name scares me!

Angela said...

Thanks for the good laugh...and scare! Thanks for reminding me that sleep deprivation is far too common among women with children and that hot flashes could very well be worse! I'll start counting sleep deprivation as a blessing. (Do you think that will prevent hot flashes from appearing?) :) Miss you!!

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