Daily Prompt: Snack

snack-lunch

Today’s nibbly snack-based lunch… smoked ham, chorizo, cheese, olives, and tomato with ground black pepper 🙂

I’m trying hard just now to make a conscious effort to make healthier food choices, especially as I’m not only an emotional eater but also one of life’s natural grazers, so I have to be really careful not just to be cramming in a constant conveyor-belt of high fat and sugar options without really thinking about it.

The thing is, I do love lots of different foods, not just sweet stuff and deep-fried stuff, so I’m trying hard to move my focus from indulging my emotional needs to tempting my tastebuds with alternative flavours and textures to enjoy. I need to break some pretty long-standing overeating habits though, so it’s not going to be easy.

My middle-aged spread is making itself far too much at home for my liking, especially now I’ve hit menopause – I don’t want to resign myself to being fat and unfit for life just because I’m in my mid-fifties. So I’m just taking it all one day at a time for now, and I’ll see how it goes…  🙂

Daily Prompt: Snack

 

Daily Prompt: Symptom

Since my female hormone levels have at last fallen through the floor, my uncomfortable peri-menopausal symptoms have finally dissipated to an easily manageable level once more. My hot flushes and night sweats have all but disappeared, my hormone headaches have subsided substantially, and I’m actually sleeping properly again – hooray!

Sad though I feel in once sense that my reproductive years are well and truly over, in another sense I’m delightfully relieved to be able to sit comfortably in my skin once more, sleep soundly in my bed again, and thankfully find myself feeling infinitely lighter and brighter in my head and heart ❤

Daily Prompt: Symptom

Daily Prompt: Blur

Final Bow…

As menopause takes one last curtain call

Dramatic hormones exit from stage left

Such bittersweet regret holds me in thrall

Old hopes of ‘one more baby’ quite bereft

Fertility has lost its early glow

No longer bathed in lime-light, cast aside

Youth’s pregnant pauses ended long ago –

No more life’s leading-lady, ripe with pride

Theatrical hysterics fought this change

Of back-stage blur replacing spot-light fame

But though my aging body now feels strange

A peaceful calm flows deeply through each vein

And reproductive life, with final bow

Makes way for brand new role, beginning now…

Daily Prompt: Blur

Daily Prompt: Aware

I’m someone who’s always been acutely aware of how I’m feeling at any given moment – sometimes that’s a good thing, sometimes it’s just too much to bear. Recently I’ve been finding myself sinking deeper and deeper into a sea of infinite sadness, an overwhelming ocean of utter flatness that threatens to engulf me, one aching heartbeat at a time…

It seems my female hormone levels, almost permanantly erratic with peri-menopausal undulations for the last few years, have finally given up the ghost and dropped off the bottom of the scale at last. No more hot flushes or night sweats, no more angry outbursts at the smallest provocation, no more emotional rollercoastering from delightful highs to desperate lows in two seconds flat, just the promise of flat dry desert stretching forward as far into the future as I can see…

It feels a bit like the calm after, rather than before, the storm. I’m sure I’ll get used to it soon enough, but for now I feel wearily empty, scarily vulnerable and lost, and completely unsure of what or how I’ll be feeling next…

Daily Prompt: Aware

Limerick Challenge: Antonyms

The hot and heavy night-time adventures of a long-suffering sleep-deprived middle-aged menopausal woman 🙂

Hot…

Night sweats cover my skin head to toe

Damp sheets cast off above and below

Yet another hot flush

Drenches me in a rush

Leaves me both hot and cold in one go

 

Heavy…

I wake early but go to sleep late

Not my choice but my hormonal fate

Such insomnia plays

Havoc with nights and days

Deep exhaustion my permanent state

 

Limerick Challenge: Antonyms

 

 

Daily Prompt: Darkness

Darkness and I are old friends – being a bit of a menopausal insomniac I’m often up prowling around in the early hours, and I rarely put the lights on. When the world sleeps but I’m wide awake I try not to stress about it, I just let the night envelop me within its limited tonal range, accepting me as one of its own.

I generally don’t spend my time searching for scary demons lurking in the shadows – I have enough demons of my own to deal with without looking for imaginary others looming out of the night. Instead I find the darkness to be surprisingly soothing. It’s as if when everything is reduced to outines and shapes, when all details are lost in the low light, there is an inherent simplicity to objects that can be quite comforting.

I say low light rather than no light because of course there is usually always some light of some kind, whether streetlights or moonlight, and once your eyes adjust to interpreting various shades of grey it’s amazing how much you can actually see. Maybe because I’m quite a gloomy person at heart, I have to say I find the gloom quietly reassuring, and always feel delightfully safe sitting peacefully in my monochrome silence 🙂

Daily Prompt: Darkness

 

Metamorphosis

Metamorphosis…

I’m tired of waking every day so sore

As fitful sleep and night sweats do their worst

My limbs still stiff and aching from before

Each fibre of my being feeling cursed

Depression adds its own exhausting spin

Draws me still deeper down the sliding slope

As spiralling emotion locked within

Breeds negativity and loss of hope

But metamorphosis need not despair

Though change aches through my body and my soul

I soothe each hurt with kindness and with care

Work hard to keep my head and heart quite whole

And by the time my raging hormones cease

I hope to find my own internal peace…

Daily Prompt: South

I’m at an age where everything is going South – as my facial skin sags downwards my eyes have become more and more hooded, my high cheekbones are slowly dropping into jowl territory, and my chin is no longer truly single but carries an unbecoming echo in its repeating outline.

The delicate skin around my neck and chest now has the texture of dry crepe paper, and these days my always-substantial cleavage requires a serious level of upholstery to maintain any semblance of remaining on my chest wall rather than descending despondently onto my flabby midriff. Menopausal middle-aged spread pushes its frontline further and further outwards, invading my waistline and amply re-drawing its borders without mercy.

Varicose veins have doodled mindlessly down my legs, where cellulite gives my thighs the appearance of a well-worn mattress with dodgy spings. Even the skin on my hands and feet is becoming increasingly wrinkled, my knuckles thickening as my joints stiffen and ache. Like my steadily-greying hair being slowly sapped of pigment, I feel like I am losing my past vibrancy: my bodily tone is fading from sharp, bright primary colours to a more sombre and muted palette. I am undoubtedly growing old, becoming more and more invisible and unrecognisable to myself as the years pass.

It gets me down at times, I can’t pretend it doesn’t. But on the other hand, I wonder why I feel it is such a bad thing to look so lived-in? In one sense I’m lucky in that up until recently I’ve always looked relatively young for my age, but in another it makes these now-so-obvious signs of aging so much more difficult to deal with. I remind myself that I’m a fifty-something mother and a grandmother and I’ve worked hard all my life, struggling at times with both my physical and mental health, and the fact that my past can be so clearly traced on my naturally-ageing body is perhaps something to learn to be proud of rather than ashamed…

Daily Prompt: South