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Thursday, October 11, 2012

In Which I Am A Maple Tree And Other Fun Menopausal Shit

WARNING: File this under TMI. I am nothing if not an oversharer.

1. Okay, so here's the thing, I have curly hair.

You may say big deal, and you may. Go ahead, Jerk. I'll wait for your Jagoff self.

The significance of this statement is I have NEVER had curly hair. Not for one second of this current life cycle. And yet, there it is. On top of my pea-sized head... curls. Unruly, Medusa-like, you-got-a-fucking-family-of-copperheads-nesting-on-your-head curly-cues.

You know in the Fall when the trees cease producing the chlorophyll that maintains their youthful green leaves, allowing the true colors of yellow, orange and red to emerge for all to marvel at their hidden beauty? Well, ever since I have turned a "woman of a certain age", as my estrogen manufacture has decreased, the ringlets have increased exponentially. Apparently estrogen is human chlorophyll. Dude, I'm fucking deciduous. I'm ready if Barbara Walters ever asks me what tree I'd be.


Who knew the only thing stopping me from looking like Orphan Annie was estrogen. The irony is I alwaysalwaysALWAYS wanted curly hair. I coveted all three of my sisters for their luscious locks thinking my life would be so much easier with care-free curls. Back in the 80s, I used to pay a lot of money and waste a lot of time at the hairdresser's inhaling the noxious fumes of permanent waves to have that big curly mop. Now I've got corkscrew hair, but have no idea how to tame its whack-ass cowlicks. Seriously. Those things have a mind of their own. I'm looking at you, right side. Why you got to be so ornery, beyatch?

2. Okay, so here's another thing, I have Menopause Head

No shit. I swear to God there are huge swiss cheese holes in my brain through which all new information plummets to the ground in a splattered mess. Names, dates, appointments... if I don't write it down AND set the alarm on my Reminder Ap to repeat-every-fucking-day-for-the-rest-of-your-pathetic-life-until-you-do-it-for-Chrissake, it's lost, dropped and stepped on.

And vocabulary...Fuggetaboutit. Midstream in a conversation, I loose my words. I'm not talking long, sophisticated five-syllable terms either. I'm talking first grade fare like car, ball, muddler.

Oh, and as an added bonus, I have Adult-Onset ADH---SQUIRREL!!!

I get distracted so easily. I am a human gnat...with a beard, perhaps a goatee if I want to get a wee crazy. (see #4) Heaven help me if I don't immediately write down a thought, because it is gone, baby, GONE! Like right now I had a riveting sentence to craftily illustrate the perfect example of the topic at hand, but then the stupid computer at The Special K on which I began composing this tome went wonky and froze every six seconds, and the phone rang with some yahoo's bogus request, and my coworker kept walking in bellyaching that his precious Cleveland Brown game wasn't on CBS. Like I even care about football let alone his stupid Cleveland team, Good God, MAN not when there's an inane hockey strike going on without any ... what do you call it? not relief or progress...SETTLEMENT! That's it! What was I talking about?

3. And get this, I can't see for shit

I am practically blind, but my eyes have been the same level of horrendous myopia for over 30 years. My prescription didn't budge. Now it waffles back and forth more than Mitt Romney over healthcare. In my infinite wisdom, I've decided to try my hand at contacts again. Couple a fluctuating nearsighted prescription with an ever deteriorating ability to read words on a page, and I need a team of physicists to figure out a viable script for contacts.

The first try was with mono vision. You know the drill where one eye is fitted for distance, the other for reading. Supposedly your brain miraculously makes it all work. Mine does not. Mine is a slow learner. Mine is an obstinate cow. Seriously. I'm on the sixth option and still no solution in sight. Pun intended. In most combinations, I can see distance like the finest HD signal. So clearly it hurts my head a little, but I can't see my electronic lover, the iPhone. And THAT my friend, as Liz Lemon would say, is a deal breaker.

4. While you're at it, call me Abe...

As in Lincoln, because as you know by now... I have a beard. And here's the weird thing, as much as I keep the waxing industry going hiding my Sasquatch face, my legs have become significantly less simian. So much so that I have to make a mental note to actually shave them. The bikini area... not so much. That bad boy's still whooping it up, because the universe is a DICK!

And another related thing, as soon I lost all of my estrogen, I lost all the elasticity in my jaw line. I'm not even overweight (technically. shut up.), but Holy Crap I have hanging chad jowls. Mmmmm, pretty. So now when I'm speeding in the car with the windows down and I think what is that weird flapping sound... Oh yeah, that's my FACE!!!!

5. I am officially retired from breederhood.

Yep, the not-so-fertile delta is closed, dried up, and awaiting repurposing. I'm down with the death of Aunt Flo and her annoying monthly visits, but the demise of my sexual desire... not so much. It's so not fair. When I turned 40, my libido went into overdrive following a natural instinct to procreate before the final buzzer.

And It. Was. Awesome! And I miss it desperately.

My piqued sexual interest lasted until about 49 when it quietly faded away into a distant memory. Experts keep saying this is an ideal time of life. I don't see it. What I see is a major disconnect between my head and Vajay. All I know is I'm too damn young to be this dead inside.

So, my advice to women in their 40s is have a lot of sex. A LOT. I'm not even kidding. Don't deny your instinct. Do it a ton. Even if you don't think you want to, do it anyway. Store it up, Sista. Savor it, because before you know it, the fucking change a-happens and your body betrays your ass, or vagina, as it were, and your Menopause Head can't remember how to spell desire, let alone feel it. I wish someone would have given this advice to me at 40, so I'm imparting this sad truth to you because I CARE, DAMMIT!

Wow. That turned into a downer. Maturing (God I hate that word) is actually a joy. It's the other physical shit that's weird and unsettling and sucky. I am more comfortable in my skin, even if that skin is sprouting a beard so thick Sid Crosby would be jealous.

I finally read Nora Efron's famed book of humorous essays on aging titled, I Feel Bad About My Neck. Twenty years ago I would have tossed it aside without a second glance. But now, I totally relate. I feel bad about my neck, I feel bad about my failing eyesight, and I feel bad about my nonfunctional lady bits.

Well, at least I have ringlets...and a large bottle of vodka.