I thought I’d made peace with my inability to carry a pregnancy to term but it would appear that somewhere buried deep in my subconscious hope still flickered. But in one foul swoop on Wednesday, the final flicker of hope was snuffed out for me. I’ve been feeling quite fragile ever since, I will not ever be legend. For those of you unfamiliar with infertility terms, to be legend or to call oneself I Am Legend, is to be infertile but against all odd’s and previous miscarriages, to fall pregnant and carry a healthy baby to term. That will never be me. I now need to start the painful process of making peace with that fact, of accepting that I am no longer a young woman in her prime, I am well and truly middle aged, almost over the hill, time to be put out to pasture and I hate it!
On Wednesday, while sitting quietly at my desk, I suddenly got an overwhelming sensation, one that left me feeling sick and exhausted, like somebody had set me on fire and I was burning up from the inside out. Within a minute, I was drenched in sweat, my hair plastered to my head, my makeup melting on my face and my clothes clinging and sticking to my body, my heart was racing, I felt anxious and I felt dizzy. The sensation couldn’t have lasted more than a minute or two but it left me feeling sick and I knew what it was. Not even 6 months past my 40th birthday, I was having my first ever hot flash!
- Hot flashes, night sweats, coldness
- Irregular periods that can be heavy, light, shorter or longer cycles
- Difficulty sleeping either getting to sleep or staying asleep
- Mood changes, anxiety, depression, irritability
- Heart palpitations (if you experience any heart disturbances, always consult a physician)
- Dry skin and/or hair loss
- Loss of or decreased sexual desire
I’ve had a number of these symptoms for probably going on the past year. Night sweats, change in my cycles, difficulty staying asleep, anxiety and now the joys of hot flashes too!
The most exciting part of all, and I say that in the most sarcastic font I can muster, perimenopause can last for as long as 10 to 15 years! Oh yay! I am a little on the young side to be starting perimenopause, statistically, most women will only start to experience these symptoms at around age 45 but it can start from as early as the mid to late 30’s. My last round of fertility blood tests was done in 2008, I was 36 at the time and my blood results did indicate that I was bordering on low ovarian reserve and that I was starting to show my age in my hormonal profile. So I guess my hot flashes have now confirmed what I should have known was coming all along.
I will never be legend. I will never know what it feels like to carry a baby to term, to feel the first fluttering of movement in my belly, to give birth. I will never know genetic mirroring. And all of that makes me feel sad.
But what makes me truly mad is that I feel too young. My body has already failed me once and it feels like it’s failing me again. I cannot possibly have the body of a middle aged woman, I still feel and behave like a 20 year old. I know that I need to make peace with this and to embrace the change, but right now I’m struggling too, still to shocked by the realization that I’m not longer a young woman in her prime.
I had a good cry into my pillow and Wednesday evening and even now while I’m typing this, the tears sting in the back of my eyes. I wonder if it’s normal for woman to be this shocked or saddened when they first start noticing the signs of the change?
Perhaps its time to have a little mid life crisis? The time of all of this is quite ironic. In the last few months, I’ve really started to embrace who I am, I have felt more free to just be me and not what anyone else thinks or says I should be. I’ve began to embrace my naughty side, feeling free to be who I am without fear of reproach. I’ve been feeling so good about who I am, so free to just be and to embrace every facet of what makes up me.
And now this…