A Guide to Surviving the Menopause
- When over-heating during the night throw off the covers and howl at the moon.
- Whenever possible wander around town for hours, or along the beach, searching for the young man/woman you mistakenly think you have fallen in love with.
- Move out of your house temporarily and:
- Live in a hut
- Volunteer to teach small children high up in the Andes
- Travel to the deserts of the world
- Go and live at your friend’s place while she is away
- Yell, throw plates, tell your husband/wife/lover/partner/ that he/she is the most boring person you have ever met
- Try to sleep with your colleague/guide/tutor/friend – this is unlikely to be successful but no one can later accuse you of not making the effort
- Refuse to cook/clean/iron/work – in fact refuse anything you don’t want to do – after all you have spent a life-time as a people-pleaser and surely it is time for a change
- Get outrageously drunk/smoke/get off your head, dance madly, cause some kind of scene/any kind of scene
- Get a tattoo/shave off your hair, wear your pants on your head
- Turn up the music loud to annoy your neighbours
- Climb a tree, canoe a river, give away your possessions
One day you will wake up and you will be through this stage of your life and even though you will not miss the flushes and sweats, the giddy spells, the foggy brain, the fits of rage, you will miss the madness of it all.
What I remember of the walk in Suffolk is this: black tree roots like the gnarled old fingers of lost giants, a broken silver birch fallen into a ditch, many reeds and sweet blackberries and the ground sandy-soft. I have forgotten the pain in my back and the irritations of paths wrongly taken.