Hittin the Pause

It would seem that I did hit pause on my valiant effort to make blogging part of my daily (monthly? YEARLY?) routine, yeah? I’m going to keep pecking away at this, though. 

Pause. Of course it’s about menopause. That was always a subject I avoided in these pages. Which is weird because there was no hesitation on my part to wax on about my iconic Elevator Doors From The Shining Periods. You’d think someone who spent a good chunk of every month reeking of pennies and constantly checking chairs after getting up would embrace the pause of the menses like a 56 year old reseller embraces senior day at the thrift store. 

The truth is, for a long long time I worried about how others saw me. Specifically, I worried a lot about how men saw me. Even though it’s doubtful that any men read this, especially now, but even in the Hausfrau Heyday there certainly weren’t throngs of dudes eagerly awaiting new posts. 

Thanks to therapy and the passage of time, men and how they see me (if they see me is still up for debate) is slowly becoming inconsequential. Oh, don’t let me get too haughty about this, lol. I still do worry about it at times. Dare you to tag a picture of me on Facebook. A bitch will break her ankle running to remedy that. 

I stopped coloring my hair a little over a year ago. That was the very first step I took in my effort to begin living for me and not for anyone else. Trust when I say this: I still wrestle with it. Not a day goes by where I don’t see the greys in the mirror and hear at least one little voice squeak I miss how we used to look. 

I would LOVE to blame my insecurities on being left for a younger woman. And I do, ha! But when doing a deep dive into my entire life and how men fit into it, I see that it’s a pretty big onion with oh so many layers. 

Most of my life has been spent trying to be someone who attracts and pleases men. I was never pretty enough or skinny enough or smart enough and eventually, young enough. As women age, it’s like we turn into vapors to society. I used to call it The Invisibling and it is 100% truth. Yeah yeah, women are finally being celebrated, right? Look at Martha Stewart on the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. But she’s being lauded because she still LOOKS YOUNG. Or knows a lot of special ways to make it look that way. No shade at all to Martha! But we have miles and miles to go until there’s truly a woman version of Sam Elliott or Sean Connery. Sigh. 

But that’s what therapy is for. This blog is to let off some steam and also get these words out of my head.

Where was I? Ahh. Yes. 


Women are finally talking about it, and not just in whispered conversations or making jokes about aging. Like there are podcasts and TikToks and everything. 

I was always kind of afraid of it. The only intel I had regarding this rite of womanly passage were images of my mom and stepmom fanning themselves and the episode of Golden Girls where Blanche thought she was pregnant but whoops it was that dang change of life.

(Quick aside- I actually did have one of those Blanche moments myself, post-divorce. Never been so happy to see a negative pregnancy test because that guy and I would have made the ugliest babies. Like Ron Perlman mixed with a cabbage patch doll. SHUDDER.)

I can’t tell you when my last period happened. Hi! Literally a gynecologist’s nightmare patient right here! I think it was either right before or early on in the 2020 lockdown. I remember having cramps and sharing this momentous event in the group chat with my two best friends. We liked to joke about getting that “wood tick about to pop” feeling every month. 

Anyway. It was obviously not a memorable thing, and to be honest, there weren’t any of the classic symptoms. It was just like someone turning off a faucet. 

The one thing I feared the most was having thinning vaginal walls. For some reason that gave me such a horrific mental image of a vag lined with crinkled reused tissue paper. 

Happy to report that the only thing thinning on me is my patience. And the hair on my left temple but that’s because the readers I keep there love eating it.

There were some weird little hot flashes, but not the rip off your clothes type. I remember a couple times at work my head got hot. Yes, just my head lol. 

And that was it. 

Oh! One other thing was b.o. I’ve always been a sweaty gal, come by that naturally via my sweet dad and his southern Minnesota farm boy genes. But it was never a stinky thing. Until the past few years. It hit me, like truly hit me, one day when I was taking pics of clothes for reselling. A horrible onion smell. The last time I smelled something like that was when one of my kids, in the throes of early puberty, stood in the kitchen next to me and I immediately began searching for a rotten potato or onion in the cupboard until it dawned on me that it was the precious baby before me stinking up the joint.

Well, I don’t do photo sessions in the kitchen so it wasn’t decomposing produce. It was me. 

That one is easy to fix with a shower and some extra Native in your pits but hoooo boy that was rank.

And now, that was it. 

OH WAIT. Forgot about weight. I guess maybe there was some weight gain? But pretty sure that was from Pandemic Nightly Happy Hour or maybe Pandemic Daily Gorging. My body has changed (no shit) and I’m probably shaped more like a snowman wearing pale peach freckled nylons filled with marbles as arms buuuuut, nothing super abnormal. I’ve always had a belly, even when my hip bones and collarbones and xyphoid process stuck out. A lot of women do mention gettin a little thick around the middle but that’s not something new in these here parts. I suggest stretchy pants. My go-to summer uniform is a pair of stretchy joggers and some random tee. Last week I wore a Neil Diamond t-shirt to senior day at the thrift store and had no less than 3 chatty old dudes strike up a conversation with me, all of which ended with the riff from Sweet Caroline. 

That about wraps it up.

Oh, I guess there is some moodiness. But again, nothing new here. Moods are my thing.

I did Dry January this year, which bled into (lmao pun time) Dry February and also March and April. Go figure, when you stop putting a known depressant into your body you tend to get less depressed. SCIENCE! Since April, I have had a couple drinks…one martini, a few glasses of wine and two margaritas. Which, back in the day was a Friday night for me so this is progress. 

That makes me wonder if alcohol tolerance might be tied to menopause? Because as the years have marched on, booze has become pretty gross to me. I mean, it still tastes good! Last weekend my daughter’s boyfriend made these amazing margaritas and they hit perfectly since it was as swampy as Satan’s balls in corduroys outside. But in general alcohol was making me feel really sick. So I’m happy to now check the box “occasionally” when asked about how much I drink. Maybe even “rarely” which is so foreign and kind of cool.

So there’s My Menopause Story © 

It certainly hasn’t been the shitshow I envisioned and I cannot tell you how nice it is to not run to Target for those pool noodle sized tampons anymore. Kind of like how you one day realize it’s been ages since you’ve stood in the toy aisle saying oh that’s cool about every freaking Lego set in stock. 

Only sometimes I do miss those Lego days. 

So to sum it up: periods are gone, hair is gray, deodorant is good. 

And like my fertility, this post is over. 


  1. never have I related to a stinking post more. i mean not that this blog post stinks. My armpits do. I do take my clothes off in my home because hot flashes are of the devil. My mom and sisters didn’t get them but boy I do. my hair is turning silver and my belly. Lord have mercy. Anyways. i enjoy your writing and look forward to your honesty. I can’t tell you when my last period was because i had an IUD for 6 years.

  2. Oh hahaha you have such a way with words 🤣🤣🤣
    I'm approaching 53 and still waiting for menopause although there are definite signs of peri so hoping it won't be long. I hear you about the greys. I stopped colouring my hair after going ham on it in the early days of COVID and ruining it lol. I've decided grey is just another hair colour and the patriarchy can bite me.

    1. Haha I cut my own hair during Covid 😂 The greys are actually kind of cool! They’re growing on me, literally and figuratively lol.


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