Geetanjalee: At the mercy of my changing body.
Let me put it out there at the outset, I’m 48, living in India, in peri-menopause, gained 5 kgs, got hot flashes & migraines, I’m also averse to taking HRT.
The journey till here has been one of confusion, research and visits to my Ayurvedic doctor. I’m a spiritualist so my natural inclination is to turn to alternative medicine for answers and help. Ayurveda has successfully helped alleviate my symptoms of fibromyalgia & adult acne, so it’s my first choice for a solution regarding my health issues.
My symptoms started after I turned 45. I woke up one night sweating and hot and knew my journey towards menopause had started. Then came the migraines once every 2 months. Luckily for me, taking aspirin gets rid of the migraine, or else, the pounding and nausea would have had me bedridden the whole day. Then came the Hypothyroidism, it seemed like I gained 5 Kgs overnight. In my experience, I was slim when I went to bed at night and not some anymore in the morning. I hated every gram of that weight as I had been slim my whole life, never having to worry about my weight. Now it was something that occupied my mindscape more ofte
n. My size popped into my mind every time my clothes didn’t fit me, whenever I craved for a piece of chocolate and had to refrain & every time I was buying a Size 8 instead of a 4. For the first time in my life, I had to wear clothes that hid my menopausal belly, clothes that fooled people into thinking I was still slim.
I wake every morning at 5:30 and do yoga & meditation.Suddenly, it wasn’t enough for me to feel good and look good. For the first time, I realised how I felt about myself was so inextricably linked to how I looked, I was becoming that woman that I always read about in magazines but wasn’t following my own sage insight about the importance of feeling good in your skin. Every cell screamed out that I wanted to be slim again. I started going to the gym but no amount of exercise helped.
I found recourse in my yoga and my Ayurvedic doctor. I diligently did pranayama specifically for the thyroid gland and took Ayurvedic medicine to enhance its function. It paid off, I don’t have Hypothyroidism anymore but the weight stayed to my dismay.
I did some research and read about how Gluten & sugar plays a part both in fibromyalgia and menopausal weight gain & how only cardio helps lose that menopausal weight. Since I have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia and am in the throes of my peri-menopause, I decided to give up gluten and control my sugar cravings. Slowly the weight started sloughing off, I even started running to add cardio to my exercise regime.
I remember the time where a month of exercise would have me looking fit and fine. Now, it’s been 3 months and I’ve only lost a kilo and a half. Basically my hormones have hijacked my body and I’m its prisoner. My friends tell me to take HRT but my symptoms aren’t that serious and I suffered adult acne in my 30’s once I got off birth control pills, so my faith in HRT doing right by my body is slim ( no pun intended).
The journey back to balance isn’t over but I wonder if my idea of balance is anachronistic as I notch up the years and inch towards 50. Maybe balance is a moving target and I just haven’t found the bullseye yet.