A full ‘Calender Round’ according to the Maya, is age 52 at which time I set off on a quest to begin preparing spiritually for the transition through the menopausal portal. At this juncture, menopause appeared like an ominous death of an old life with little to look forward to according to the modern world. I held a strong attachment to my moon cycles as my personal experience had always been positive, pain free and life-affirming. I delighted in its rhythm, flow, and power, enjoying how bonded through the cycles I felt to the Moon’s own waxing and waning as well as with the oceans and her tides, to the women’s circle around me and to the procreative life-force of creation itself.
The journey to find meaning began at The International Heart of the Water Turtle Moon Danza in Minnesota, USA and specifically to Abuela (Grandmother) Sylvia. It was here that I learnt more deeply about the mystery of this phenomenal portal to Elderhood, and the mechanism in which a woman’s energetic circuitry changes and delivers a new and profound relationship with the divine. I was uplifted and heartened to experience directly how a community could honour and hold this space for an emerging elder; a far cry from how aging is approached and contextualised in the west. Ancestral wisdom teaches us that this transition is a time for quiet introspection and gentle self-care in order to rebirth and begin a new life in service as an elder, a precious last gift. In contrast, the menopause in modern medicine is often seen as a ‘condition’ that needs to be treated so that a woman can continue functioning at her former capacity, overlooking it’s significance and meaning as a natural rite of passage.
I promtly entered peri-menopause soon after this visit, leaning strongly into the support of my own Homeopath through the process. Every woman’s experience is personal and unique and so I guide my patients going through their menopause journey, in much the same way I guide younger women who suffer with difficult periods. Often, when women begin to honour their monthly moon time and regard their bodies natural functions positively rather than as an inconvenience or burden, their experience is transformed, and the suffering is eased. Your body is your beloved companion, never your enemy.
I see symptoms that arise at menopause as a sign of underlying susceptibilities in a woman’s constitution, perhaps having lain dormant in the body for years, unmanifested. One of the functions of the monthly bleed is to serve as an outlet for flushing out dis-ease processes, in order that the body be the purest vessel possible to contain new life. The symptoms that arise at menopause are a call for healing, attention and letting go. Suppression, in homeopathic philosophy, only drives the underlying cause deeper in, and makes things worse in the long-term as it limits the life force.
As Homeopaths, we have at our disposal around 5000 remedies, that are ‘proved’ according to precise homeopathic principles and procedures, that can guide us towards better health and greater freedom. As Homeopathy is all about the individual, so is the potential for any remedy to be required at any given moment. Here, I will mention just two remedies often indicated during this time, namely Sepia and Lachesis.
The hot flushes come during the night and on waking up. The intense heat moves dryly up the body and can feel like a rush of blood to the head. The flash is relieved by sweating or a period.
Symptoms include feeling worn out, detached from the family, irritable and depressed. There may be dryness and loss of libido and the pelvic organs can feel weak and sagging. Vigorous exercise often helps, especially dancing to lift the mood and energy.
Remedies act on the vital force to keep energy moving and not get stuck. So called symptoms are just the body’s messages regarding the underlying state. Self-prescribing can help take the edge off an acute phase, but for profound healing, it’s wise to journey with a professional Homeopath.