“Let’s just say, this is the last thing I expected. ” My doctor watches me with an understanding look on her face: “Indeed, you tend to think about hot flashes, mood swings or a short fuse. And the skipping of periods. But not this. Still, it is all part of that final stretch into menopause.” “Well,” I try to joke, “that short fuse is getting shorter by the day, let me tell you.” She probably understands my need to keep the conversation light, to prevent the tears from falling, but that doesn’t stop her from warning me: “Don’t forget: if the situation doesn’t change in two weeks time, we have to take other steps! Keep me updated and I expect to see you in two weeks.”
She was talking about my period. Which hadn’t skipped a day in over a month. I was leaking for a month now and this extended period was accompanied by all the usual suspects. Including the stabbing pain in my lower abdomen, that haunted me for two years every time my period was there. But then it is for 3 days. At the most. Now it was 1 month. 30 freaking days! That pain though, so had the doctor assured me, was caused by the ovaries. Both had been checked on fibroids and cysts and other unwanted visitors and found clean. My pap smear was clean too, so my uterus couldn’t be the cause. After exclusion of all possible causes, one thing remained: my ovaries were having a retirement party. And judging the pain, enjoying it tremendously. Of course my doctor was right: if you think about menopause you think about hot flashes and mood swings. You definitely do not think about a month long period. With the mood swings, pain and other discomforts. Worse though, than the pain, is that hormonal depression it pulled me in.
I tried to joke it away, but fun had a hard time finding me, these last 30 days. My short fuse was hardly recognizable as a fuse any more. I was transformed in a dud. One moment I’m laughing about a cute dog, in a bicycle basket, next thing you know I’m barking at a young mother that has more attention for her phone than her child, which I narrowly avoid to collide with on my bike. Am I really transformed in a month time? In that menopausal witch from my other article? There is a thundercloud above my head. All the time. For 30 freaking days now. My patience is non consistent. And the patience of the people near me is disappearing even more rapidly. Because the longer the pain holds, I’m getting less sleep and positivity is even harder to find. I just don’t like myself anymore. And we all know that is a dangerous road to walk on!
And then, two days before my doctor’s deadline, it happens. The sun is shining outside. It’s a watery one, working hard to drive away the mists. But the sun is there! I put a hand on my stomach and realize: I slept without waking up because of the pain. The thunderclouds are gone. The world seems brighter. Just like that. I jump out of bed. Ha! Is it really this simple? My body has reset itself. All by itself. And I’m planning to enjoy it as long as it takes. Because at our age, you never know when the next periode announces itself.