Menopause is an Athletic Event:  Insomnia!
Monday, June 4, 2012 at 9:43AM
Elena Taurke in Aging, Crone, Feminism, Menopause, Motherhood, People Getting Old

I dozed until midnight, then adrenalin and heat fired up my body for the race, the chase, the battle in the jungle.  Only I'm not in the jungle; I'm in bed trying to sleep.  I'm having a major argument with my body:  What is wrong with you?!  Can't you feel the fatigue?  Why are you flooding me with all this energy?  Body:  Hey, it's not my problem; you're the one with all the worries and ISSUES that keep me up.   Mind:  You have a lot of nerve calling me out on ISSUES when these things wouldn't even bother me if I weren't flooded with adrenalin and cortisol and whatever else you're doing to me.  

Most functional people would have grabbed a cab straight to a psychiatrist for Ambien.  Or to a doctor, or to the park--whatever.  This is not a feel good experience day after night after day after night.  The relentless irritated exhaustion is wearing me down to the bone.  My coordination is compromised; I feel nauseous, dizzy.   My face is shot, aging daily from going through the nightly wringer.
I do want to put an end to it, but I admit there is something interesting that happens when your brain loses much of its ability, especially when you have the kind of brain that gets in the way of things.   Such a brain shatters under the weight of fatigue.   Inhibitions fall away--who cares?!   Indecision is rendered meaningless--who cares?!   And in this agonizing yet carefree condition, I rediscover play.

In a household where my daughter dominates all waking hours, the night gives me permission to sense the rest of the universe.  Even my partner, waking at 3am to keep me company for a while, has a far more interesting approach to things when we're off the schedule, off the grid.  

Off the grid.  An athlete without any recognition, applause, or even acknowledgment.   A warrier without a witness.  A woman in transition to an uncharted place--one that will be uniquely mine though I share the process with half the universe.   Something worth staying up for.   or is it? 

May 2011

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