This year at my family’s annual holiday party I was talking to my friend Heidi, a physical therapist/wise woman who has two teenage daughters and is herself in peri-menopause. “I’m totally in puberty” she said. “ The difference is that now I can see it. I can see from outside looking in what is happening to me and I have some clarity about it. Some perspective.” When girls are in puberty they don’t have perspective. They don’t have the years of experience to tell them that this is a moment in time, that this emotion, body change, or crush will change. They are flooded with the here and now of hormones and life experiences.
At fifty, I am just entering menopause and I can see what Heidi is talking about. The mood swings, the drama, the frustration at not being able to control the texture of my skin or my energy level are all here, just like in puberty. But I have wisdom and clarity. I am connected with my inner voice that tells me that I am driving this train. These changes that are happening to me do not define me. It took me years to come back to this true nature. I am still aware of times when I shush it, turn down the volume to accommodate someone or something else. As a fifty-year-old woman I can now reflect back on my own path. I can see where my inner voice was loud and clear. I can remember when I closed it down and boxed it up to make room for what I thought was expected of me. And I can feel now how it is showing back up, loud and clear, awake and aware.
Women share a hormonal and a historical connection that is powerful and illuminating. My mother’s story--- her strength and resilience as well as what she lost and sacrificed-- informed my own experiences as a girl and a woman. And what I’ve learned from my mother and my own experiences informs my own daughter’s path. What we all share is an inherent true nature. This is the thread that runs through us at all stages of life and connects us to our power. That's pretty awesome.