It’s Tuesday after the long weekend on a rainy, grey evening. The house is vibrating with children—Julie, our new nanny, moved into our apartment with two of her own, Paris, 10 and Boe, just turned 8. They are playing fire engine with grandson Felix, almost 4. Even a year ago all this extra activity would have been unbearably irritating and exhausting for me; now it is precious, at least in this moment, smile. . .
A few weeks ago I turned 55 and am halfway into menopause. No symptoms except for occasional “warm flashes” when I didn’t get enough sleep and some very welcome maturing on the mental and emotional levels that will hopefully continue unfolding as I head into middle age. Oh yes, and a wonderful freedom from that distracting libido!
Counter to what our culture leads us to expect, I’ve never felt this healthy as an adult. After a devastating time with illness on many levels as a youth and young adult, when I could barely function for decades, this is a profound blessing.
My medical doctor of over 15 years is surprised; it’s not what he usually sees, especially after such a history of poor health. I even grew 1/2” in height and my eye prescription dropped from –8.5 to –6.5, although I still have a cataract in the right eye and a creaky right hip, both healing phases according to German New Medicine (I think they are hanging and I am procrastinating finishing them off. . .).
The best parts of getting healthier are having energy, feeling kinder and being able to think more clearly, but the path certainly comes with relapses. Last night I was in town without dinner and ended up buying unhealthy food, eating it too late and then not being able to sleep, on top of everything feeling stupid about it.
And this was after my first day on my eight week Mindfulness Meditation course where we are learning self-compassion, grimace. Today and tomorrow I’ll be paying for it with a little less energy, kindness and clarity — welcome to the human race!
Thanks for listening and may you ride the disruptive waves of fall gently. . .
ps: Helpful meditation books are: A Path with Heart by Jack Kornfield and the mindful path to self-compassion by Christopher Germer, which we often carry in the clinic.