What is in a name? Evidently, more than one might realize.
Navigating the terrain of midlife as an awakening and unapologetic woman is not for the faint of heart. Add to that wild ride of the complete rewiring of our system and the path can feel overwhelming, daunting, and lonely. Menopause and our journey into midlife is the journey that every woman will take, and no one wants to talk about.
During my experience of menopause, I felt lost, confused, and frustrated. It was as though I was wandering through a thick forest, with no compass, no guidebook, and no clues. I was seeking answers from outside myself, and praying someone would take my hand and show me the way.
I was hungry to connect with other women in my midlife journey, yet the mere mention of the word was met with:
- glazed eyes
- an attitude of just deal with it
- some extensive narrative relating to “I can’t deal with it right now, I’m overwhelmed already with teenagers, elder parents to care for, a body I do not recognize any longer, and a job. I’m exhausted, and I don’t even know the words to talk about it!”
Confusion, fear and denial.
I am acutely aware of this deep cultural angst and collective baggage we carry around the word menopause, which mostly represents pain and loss for us women.
The meno-story runs something like this: women become old, dried up, invisible, and sexless.
Yet, as many of us know, perspective is everything. Menopause can be those old dried up ideas, and it can be so much more! I realized I needed to dive into my personal journey and listen to my own inner wisdom.
The guidance I sought was not outside of me, it was within. The challenge was to stop and listen.
Are we willing to listen to the wisdom this upending life shift offers? For me, the inner skills of a lifelong Yoga practice and meditation, as well as good nutrition, mindset and a love of the deep inner dive of self-reflection were non-negotiable allies.
There are profound hidden gems, and through my voyage into this inner well of disintegrating, dismantling and re-wiring, I’ve learned midlife is also a firey initiation into truth, wisdom, and discovering the essence of who I truly am.
Hold on and let go. Wow! A tall order.
Learning to hold the juxtaposition of opposites, feeling into the truth of what is, and the ability to gain perspective as we look back over decades is all part of the ride.
We must dissolve, and then find our wings like the butterfly emerging from her cocoon.
We emerge into Sovereignty. Self-authenticated, full voiced and powerful.
Now, well on the other side of menopause, I’m on a mission to honour women’s journeys, to witness and authenticate. To name and give meaning and voice to this wild terrain of the ‘older woman’. From the lens of now, we are SO not done yet!
I know from my life and working with many women, there is rich meaning and purpose in the deep flowing river into this uncharted territory.
It is a journey of Ripening.
Ripening means to come to full flavour.
It is the journey of Sovereignty.
Self determined, unapologetic and standing fully in all of who we are.
My hope from sharing my story is to spark inspiration for you to look inside for your internal guidance and to not let a word prevent you from bringing about the transformation that is invited through this phase of life.
We are ripening and you are not alone in this dance. I’d love to hear from you.
Please leave your comments below!