Menopause Stories: My Personal Experience With Perimenopause
It started with 24 women submitting their menopause stories through selfie videos for what we were calling our “ anthem video”.
Each of them answered a brief script of questions about how they were experiencing perimenopause symptoms, post-menopause, or somewhere in between.
Two months later, our editors wove together their stories into what is now the #IAmTheChange video. Please pause for a moment and watch it now…but first, promise me that you will come back to read the rest of this email. It’s critical that you do.
Women Around The World Sharing Their Horrible Menopause Stories
Now that you’ve watched the video, how do you feel? Do you feel emboldened? A little less alone during this time of life? Moved by hearing women talk about a change that you’re going through too?
The #IAmThe Change video is a call to arms for women to speak up about how they’re transforming during their time of menopause. No more shushing women into isolation; this video is meant to help us all feel a little more normal; a little more in control of this miraculous and sometimes challenging transition we’re in; and a little less lonely when the stress, sleeplessness, or relationship strain gets heavy.
We didn’t quite know where the women’s’ stories would take us; but we knew that it takes voices coming together to create change. The kind of change that materially changes how women will experience this menopause transition so many of us manage on a daily basis.
With #IAmTheChange, we believe that talking about our time in menopause will make it less daunting, isolating and stigmatizing for all women.
And it’s not about the hashtag; it’s about the conversation we ignite. It’s the perception we change of a 50-year-old woman. It’s the workplace we help make more inclusive for women experiencing brain fog, fatigue, and hot flashes.
Alicia Garza, the co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement said, “You don't turn a hashtag into a movement - people turn things into a movement.”
#IAmTheChange is a conversation-starter. It’s the ice-breaker for real meaningful conversation about this incredible transformation we as women get to go through.
I’m not trying to candy-coat the night sweats, mood swings, weight gain, or mysterious symptoms that come with the change; but I am trying to make them less daunting with a supportive community who can openly express how they’re feeling.
Feel compelled to share your menopause story and be part of a movement to change the way society views women in transition?
Submit your #IAmTheChange story. It takes 5 minutes to write a few things about your experience. You can add your name and photo, or leave it anonymous. Every story helps, because you never know who might read your story and connect, given the immense feeling of relief that comes with knowing that you’re not the only one.
Because it starts with one person, I’m sharing my story below. Please read it and share yours.
Every woman has a story. We want to hear yours.
Here is mine...
Name: Jill Angelo
Menopause phase: Perimenopause
What did you know about menopause before starting your own journey?
I didn’t know much about it. I thought it was a time in life when women got hot flashes and they’re moody. All negatives, nothing positive.
What has been the most surprising aspect of menopause?
I’m most surprised about how freeing it feels. I care less about what others think of me. I have a new respect for what my body is capable of as it transforms into what it needs to become for the next 40 years. I’m also surprised at how others so willingly open up when I share what’s working for my symptom relief.
How do you control your menopause symptoms?
I struggle most with bad irregular periods, night sweats and trouble sleeping. As a result, I am getting an IUD to manage my periods. I have an incredible gynecologist who is helping me. For the sleep and night sweats issue, I limit hard to digest foods; I time my alcohol consumption before 9 p.m.; and I use the Gennev Sleep Premium CBD Tincture to manage my stress and help me fall asleep faster.
What’s your advice to younger women about what to expect in menopause?
Don’t be dismissive of random symptoms that may pop up. I started having night sweats when I was 34. I didn’t dive into educating myself about menopause just then, but I did seek to understand what was causing them and then changed my behaviors to put them in check so I could get a good nights’ sleep. Menopause is not an “old woman’s thing”. It’s a natural change in your hormone patterns that always track to your age.
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