No salty tears.
That’s the imperfect haiku I wrote in an attempt to capture something that happened recently. The other night, I woke up around 2 AM because my sheet and comforter had gotten soaked. Although this had happened before, it was the first time the implications really hit me: I have entered perimenopause. Even though a previous hotflash soaked far more, this time it also brought acceptance. And then excitement. I am entering a period of physical transition to a new phase in my life!
In the morning, I noticed that something had changed in me. It was like my priorities had fallen into place.
Although I had done the exercise at the beginning of this video a couple months ago, I still wasn’t scheduling my priorities. I was still agreeing to do things I would rather not – probably driven by that good old need to belong and my fear of loneliness. Somehow things looked different that post-hotflash morning. I wanted to clear my schedule so that I can put things on it that bring meaning to my life (aka priorities):
- Dance & improv
- Satisfying connections with others
- Motivating Change
The foundation is taking care of myself to ensure I have the energy to do the things I love. This includes getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, and avoiding things that drain my energy. I am realizing more and more that there is a dancer inside of me. She isn’t well trained (yet). Dance is important for my emotional balance and self-expression. And I decided that morning that I want to devote more time and energy to it. Maybe there is hope for this 45-year-old… Improv – for now the theatre kind – helps me shed some of the layers of emotional stiffness and allows me to try out being different in a way that’s fun and play. I have a dream to be able to combine dance and improv in some way and share that with others because I think there’s tremendous healing power in that (more so than in solely word-based modalities like Nonviolent Communication, for example). This won’t happen unless I put myself behind it.
My top two priorities are clear to me, including their order. The remaining three aren’t quite as clear both in terms of their order and what they mean exactly and in what doses I need them to support my energy rather than drain it. I want to motivate change through offering life design and self-empowerment, which hopefully will allow me to earn a livelihood.
All this shifting around in my life, including letting go of a few things and connections, which is always painful, is a bit disorienting. After the recent loneliness visit, it seems a bit odd to me to let go of some connections – and yet there’s also the excitement of knowing that I will have time to devote to myself and doing that in a different way than by being solitary. How this all pans out, I don’t yet know. Maybe this is just a phase, another habitual reaction to loneliness. Or maybe it is, just like my body signals, a phase of transition to something different.