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Menopause Awareness Month 2016

I had a play-date with one of my Grandkids last week, along with her friend. We were going to an arcade to have lunch and play some games. Before we left, she went to the bathroom; I heard her call “Grammy, can you please come here! I got my period and it’s all over my underwear!”

Not to worry, with 9 grandkids, of which 4 are girls, I am always prepared with the necessities when one of them gets their period. Out came the sanitary pads, new underwear and we were good to go.

But, she is young to have a period; she’s only 10 years old and has had it for about 6 months. When she first started menstruating, she didn’t want to tell her friends because none of them had gotten their periods as yet and she was embarrassed.

But this friend just knew what was up.

She said she hadn’t “gotten hers” as yet, but her mother had given her books to read and had several discussions with her as to why a girl gets a period. I was astounded at how this little girl knew about ovaries, ovulation and menstruation. She explained to my Granddaughter details that I had not even thought to tell her “why girls get their periods.”

With a little discomfort and cramps, the three of us climbed in my car and off we went to play games and there they were, just little girls again.

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I remember my first period. I was 12 years old and alone in my house. I called my mom who was visiting with my relatives. She immediately told my Grandmother, my Uncle, and of course my dad that I had now become a woman! I struggled with awful monthly periods. Sometimes I would have to stay in bed for a whole day because the cramps were so intolerable.

PMS was middle name. I would bleed for at least a week, but I was always regular at 28 days. Even after three pregnancies, the painful cramps didn’t subside, and to make matters worse, I developed endometriosis, which was like someone stabbing me in the ovaries every month.

So, when I went into early menopause I wasn’t a bit upset. How great, that at 43 with no more periods, I didn’t have any more cramps or Endometriosis pain.

Was it a tradeoff: Menopause…Period, which was worse?i-love-speaking-with-women-around-the-country-1

For me, both! I suffered with a difficult menopause. If there was a symptom, I had it. I suffered with hot flashes, night sweats, irritation, dry skin, and vaginal dryness! I simply couldn’t take the debilitating symptoms and opted to go on a full regime of hormone therapy.

I must say it helped somewhat, but after 10 years of heavy duty estrogen and progesterone, I weaned off and low and behold ALL my symptoms returned and I was back where I started.

Many years have passed since the onset of menopause (both peri and post) and believe it or not I still get hot flashes every day, but one thing has changed for me–I don’t suffer from vaginal dryness any longer.

I have been on my own regime of Vaginal Renewal Complex for over 6 years and the irritation and dryness are gone. Sex is more comfortable and I feel great!!

Whether you’re 10 years old or 60 years old, talking and communicating with other women about what’s happening to your body is the most important gift you can give.

We are Women Helping Women. It’s Menopause Awareness Month. Keep the conversation going!

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Author: Olga Cohen

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