Menopause- Your skin might fry like chicken…

Standard

fried chicken

So going into Menopause I suppose is called Peri-menopause. The lovely period of time before your period ceases to exist. The period of time that you go from having glowing supple skin to dry, peeling, skin. To where your lovely pale skin is now speckled in age spots. The time of your life that your period my sync to your teen and your husband and son’s want to go anywhere but where you both are. The time in your life when your period comes once every 2 weeks or once every 3 months or anywhere in between. Where cramping becomes a thing again. Where suddenly at night you are stripping naked because you’ve sweat thru your tee-shirt AGAIN!

Yes- this lovely information is not told to you. One has to google symptoms. This past week- I enjoyed 2 hrs from 4-6pm in full sun. It was a hot day in Chicago-land and I didn’t wear any sunscreen. I was happy to catch some rays and maybe some Vitamin D in the mix. I had no idea that a day later I’d wake up with hives up and down my arms as if I’d been a piece of fried chicken. By Friday I had scratched my pink itchy bumps and by Friday night I was a raging red and hot mess (my arms) and I was off to the doctor. Prednisone on board and the hives are beginning to fade. But why does nobody tell you that going thru peri-menopause and menopause that your skin can be sensitive to sunlight when it may have never been before? Did you know you can even become allergic to the sun? ALLERGIC??

Why does this happen? Well according to WebMD and other lovely sources of medical information online I have discovered it’s because your estrogen levels drop. From the website, My Menopause Doctor, I got to read up on this wonderful news:

What are the common symptoms of the menopause?

Some women have very few or even no symptoms and their periods simply stop happening. However, for the majority of women it is not so straightforward and around 80% of all women experience several symptoms. The symptoms you may experience vary between different women. These symptoms often have a very negative impact on your life and can really affect your relationships with your partner, family and work colleagues.

Symptoms include hot flushes, night sweats, sleep disruption, insomnia, exhaustion, mood swings, palpitations, chest pain, breathlessness, depression, anxiety, hair loss or thinning, vaginal dryness, bladder weakness, incontinence, urinary tract infections, lack of libido, change of body shape, dry eyes, dry mouth, memory loss, poor concentration, brain “fog”, aching joints and muscles, headaches and migraines.

Lovely- currently I experience all of them aside from hair loss or thinning, UTI’s and memory loss. GOOD GOD! At least I know I am not going crazy but egads.

I love the “change of body shape.” Is that what this is? I used to have a waist. USED TO…and now I feel like I am just one universal blob. Two years ago at my physical I weighed in at 150 and they cautioned me “Be sure to exercise and eat well etc etc.” And I did and I always have. I actually weighed my heaviest (aside from pregnancy) when I met my husband. I was 175 lbs and 5 ft 6″ and that wasn’t awful but after each pregnancy I went down 10lbs from there so after having Cole I was 145 lbs and I loved it. I felt good so by the time Cole was 10 yrs old I was 150 and I accepted it. I was a bit older- into my 40’s and I didn’t mind. But now just 2 years later and I’m back to 173.8 lbs. WTH? I haven’t worn dresses on a regular basis in years and now all of a sudden I’m in lovely Lularoe Carly dresses which look great and I don’t mind that I love them but I am only wearing them daily because MY PANTS DON’T FIT!!! Seriously- I had to buy like large underwear to cover my “change in shape” so I have no bumps appearing on the outside of my clothes. Seriously? What is happening?

I never wore v-necks before and now that’s all I wear for tee-shirts. A v-neck keeps me cooler. Dresses provide air flowing all over so I don’t sweat thru my pants- not that it matters since said pants don’t fit anymore either. I am NOT going to wear a size larger. NOPE- so dresses it shall be. I broke down and put on my fit-bit. I acknowledge that the last 10 lbs has gone on because our dog died and I stopped walking throughout the day. So the fit-bit is on and I’m cranking out 6,000 steps a day thus far. Next week my goal is to up it by 500 steps a day, so on and so forth til I hit 10,000 daily goal. I realize I became sedentary with my job (sit at my desk and type) and also with my volunteer jobs (sit at desk and type some more). I get it. I need to move and I am open to it. But this week alone I know I have walked more and eaten less and the damn scale has not budged. Maybe I need to give it more time but I swear every single night with these darn hot-flashes I am losing a pound if not more of just sweat.

Nobody shares this lovely information with you. Similar to when you are all excited about being pregnant and someone lets it go that you might poop in child-birth and you nearly vomit at the thought of it. Yeah- it is sorta like that. (Sorry if you are pregnant and reading this because in fact you poop when you give birth- one birth canal is right on top of your colon and it happens). Menopause is like that secret nobody talks about.

So if you don’t want your skin to erupt in a burn that looks like fried chicken I suggest you cover up and wear sun screen even if it’s 4pm outside. I was told to wear linen long sleeved shirts as my skin has become so sensitive. Apparently I am prone to the sun sensitivity in peri-menopause and menopause and post-menopause because I have very fair skin and I am allergic to environmental allergens. Joy.

I know my husband would love it if my libido was raging and I didn’t sweat at night. I’m hoping the sweating at least goes away and I wouldn’t mind being jazzed up for sex on a more regular basis either. Getting old sucks and I think us 45+ year olds need to band together and share what’s going on with our bodies because I’m fairly certain it ain’t just me sweating to the oldies. 

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