Up to a few years ago, I had no idea there was such a thing as PeriMenopause or PostMenopause. For me there was just Menopause. Full stop. And when the Menopause I knew would come, my period would stop so I no longer would be able to conceive, hot flashes/flushes would be an unpleasant side effect as much as some sleeping problems and low estrogen issues like aging and bone loss.
That was pretty much it my knowledge of Menopause.
So, when I started experiencing some Menopause symptoms (my period became irregular and suddenly I started having some sleeping issues) around my mid 30s I went to my gynaecologist and asked him whether or not those symptoms were related to the fact that Menopause was coming. Back then I have read that when Menopause was approaching our period would become “funny”. He assured me that was not the case, that periods were not a perfectly timed thing (except that mine used to be) and Menopause was far far away from my reality. No mentions to PeriMenopause whatsoever.
And that is how I went through my whole PeriMenopause phase (from my mid 30s through my early 40s): totally unaware I was on it. I just heard of it when I was entering Menopause and had almost everything undercontrol (or on my way to it).
Anyways, since PeriMenopause is a reality and can present a lot of symptoms that can make your life a little hell-ish and you were only expecting them when Menopause arrives, I believe every women should know about it even before going through it. Otherwise you get lost and people (aka doctors) who are supposed to put you back on the right track, for some reason just don’t help you at all. So, at least being aware of it can help you to get help from a doctor who actually knows about it and can help you through it. So here it is an introduction of what PeriMenopause, Menopause and PostMenopause are, because all of them matters:
PeriMenopause is the transitional phase through Menopause. It’s when you can present lots of symptoms related to Menopause like hot flashes/flushes, sleeping disorders, mood swings, low energy, brain fog, memory loss and others, even not being at Menopause officially. You still menstruate but your period can get funny, irregular, heavy, moody, insane in many other ways. It can last up to 8 to 10 years, more or less. PeriMenopause can hit you (pretty bad) around your 30s or 40s. Yep, that early. Here your estrogen levels start to fluctuate insanely and begin to drop.
Menopause officially happens when your menstruation stops and that lasts for a year for those who are over 50 and two years for those who are under 50 years old. Your estrogen levels drop significantly.
Having said that: because in PeriMenopause your period gets funny (meaning it can be late or early and you can menstruate for weeks or skip your period for months), you can go without your period for as long as almost a year and then, boom, it could come back. So, although you were a few months menstruation free, if it comes back before a year if you are over 50 and before two years if you are under 50 it means that you were not at Menopause but in PeriMenopause, still.
PostMenopause is the after Menopause phase when you have no more periods for more than one year or two, depending whether or not you are over or under 50. Your estrogen levels are pretty low. And this phase will last till you die.
And the answer to that question is very simple: something you love and feel comfortable wearing, something that favors and suits your body, skin tone and style, something that you feel good and confident on it, something that let the best version of yourself shine. And nope, you don’t need to wear anything on trend or contemporary. Just pick an outfit that resonates you, your taste, your style. That is always ON trend by the way. Because wearing yourself is never outdated.
Another thing you have to have in mind when choosing your outfit is where you are going to. Is it a casual date like at a coffee shop or at a simple restaurant? Or is it in a fancy restaurant or at the Opera? Hehehe
In any case, dress accordingly.
And no, you don’t need to go for sexy, revealing clothes, unless, of course, that is your style. Otherwise, as I said, pick an outfit that resonates you. After all, this is also a good way to introduce yourself to the person you are going to meet.
And no, loungewear is not a possibility. Even knowing that if you read my post on loungewear your options will be fab, even if loungewear is your favorite thing to be in, especially in the comfy category, even if loungewear represents you that much.
This is a time to look for an outfit in another section of your wardrobe. Okay?
It is also a good idea to wear something cool with natural fabrics and breathable if the weather is hot or think about layering if the weather is cold instead of wearing something warm that you can’t remove. A coat, a jacket or a cardigan, a piece that you can take off easily if by any chance hot flushes arrive unannounced. And you know that is exactly what usually happens.
And speaking of hot flushes, if they do show up, there is no need to feel embarrassed about it. It is something that is part of life and the phase you are currently in. Embrace it. So, no need to panic. You can own your hot flush moment and approach naturally or even with a sense of humor.
Or if for you it is not comfortable at all to deal with it with openness at this level and especially with someone you just met, then excuse yourself and go to the restroom and wait till it goes away. And you know it does go away. Eventually. You can take this opportunity and freshen you up a bit after you cool down. No biggie.
Or if yours are that type that shows up all the time or lasts way too long, order some cool beverage to sip and cool down. Or even consider to add to your accessories repertoire a stylish fan. Take with you all the time and use whenever you feel you need to.
If by any chance you are dealing with urinary incontinence you can wear a proper pad for it. No problem. And bet on a flowy dress or a flowy skirt so you don’t need to worry about it.
Below I picked some looks to go on a casual Spring Summer date so you can have an idea of what to wear on your first date. Simple, easy breezy looks because you don’t have to complicate to look fab.
By the way, you don’t need to buy anything new for that matter. You can shop your own closet for the look. After all, your closet should be well equipped with clothes and accessories that you looooove, feel yourself, comfy and the whole she-bangs, right?
Anyways, here are the looks:
Dresses are a great option. If you are a dress kind of woman. You can pick a feel good dress, with a hem that is comfortable for you. Around the knee (just above or just below) tends to be a good, safe bet for most women.
A shirt dress, a sweater dress, a wrap dress, a flowy dress or an A-line dress are all great options. You can always dress up or down accordingly.
You can pick one with a solid color, neutral or colorful or a printed one. It is up to you and your style.
Accessorize as you feel up to. Pick your shoes and a perfect clutch or bag and you are ready to go.
And if you want to give a more winter vibe to them you can add thick stockings and boots and a cardigan and/or a coat with yours.
Jumpsuits are also an option but not very practical to go the bathroom. If you are going way too much to the bathroom these days, it might be a good idea to consider something else like a dress or the combo pants/skirts and shirts/blouses.
And if your go-to-outfit is sleeveless you can always add a layer to it like a cropped jacket, a jacket or a cardigan. If you want to.
A simple duo like jeans and a shirt with boots will do it. Especially but not only if the shirt or coat or jacket has something out of the ordinary. It can even be a bedazzled or shiny fabric. Or an out of ordinary pants, like a cropped one.
But still, if they are pretty basic you can always add up some bazinga with accessories like necklaces, cuffs, bracelets, rings…
Or not. It is up to you and your style.
Of course that you can pick a pants that looks good on you like a straight or bootcut instead of a slim one. Actually, you should do that.
BTW: you don’t need to wear high heel shoes. You can wear flats (sandals or ballerina). But with a dressier vibe. Forget about flip flops, crocs and other way too casual shoes. Give your casual a slightly upgrade.
Of course that if you want to wear heels you can. It is up to you and how comfortable you are on them. You just should pick a heeled shoes with a heel as high as you can walk gracefully on them.
And speaking of heels… lately there are plenty of heeled shoes with a thick and not so high heel that are way easier to deal with. And they look pretty good. And even stylish.
And yes, if you are gonna reveal your feet make sure it is presentable. You don’t need to wear nail polish but your feet and nails have to be well-taken-care-of. They should be in a good shape. If they are not, consider shoes that are not that revealing like boots, ballerina flats or pumps.
Pick a nice lingerie set (panties and bra) that looks gorgeous and so you. A set that makes you feel confident, attractive and comfortable even if you have no intention to show him what you are wearing under on that first date. A set that is the right one for the outfit you pick to wear. Because it is pointless to wear a bandeau top if a strapless bra makes you feel insecure and uncomfortable. Remember: you should wear something that makes you feel comfortable, something that has your back.
Makeup and hair are also part of the look. Make sure your hair looks good, healthy looking. If you are having one of those bad hair days you can always wear it in a bun.
Makeup doesn’t need to be professional. It can even be a basic no makeup makeup look. But consider at least a good foundation or primer (or both) with a long-lasting effect, some lipstick, healthy glowing blush and mascara. And lots of moisturizer. Because hydrated skin is key to look amazing, regardless.
Don’t forget to carry blush and lipstick to reapply. And a good idea is to carry those absorbing, blotting papers to keep the oil and sweat away-ish.
And yes, you can set a whole look for a first date and repeat it exactly for any first date that will come ahead, if the dress code is the same, obviously. There is no problem in repeating looks. You know that, right?
Or you can pick the outfit and accessorize differently on the other first dates that will come. The idea here is to set a look or the outfit with the accessories alternatives for your first dates in advance. And yes, you can do it. And for different occasions and seasons. So, when your first date comes (and it will come), this is gonna be a no-brainer, already set look. One thing less to worry about when you get yourself a date.
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If you take Maca powder you probably felt its, let’s call it, peculiar taste. It is not something yummy to say the least. Au contraire. I hear you. But worry no more cause I have the perfect trick so you can have your Maca powder without ewing it.
How? Try mixing your Maca powder with cinnamon powder over a mashed banana. Yes, first pealed the banana and with a fork mash it all. Then add plenty of cinnamon powder, enough to cover the whole mashed banana. Then add the Maca powder and mash it all together till Maca and cinnamon blend completely.
This would be enough to enjoy your Maca powder without tasting it. But you can also add some Chia seeds, Flax flour and Oat Bran to it. That is what I do. I like it and I do believe my body needs the nutrients and fibers from them. You can skip the Chia seeds and the Flax flour and just add the Oat Bran though. Or just eat the banana with Maca and cinnamon. It will do the trick.
In any case, you will not feel the Maca taste at all.🙏
And yes, if you don’t know yet… Maca is a good option for all of us who are going through peri-menopause, menopause or post-menopause. It can alleviate the symptoms related to it like hot flashes, low libido, vaginal dryness, interrupted sleep, poor memory, anxiety, stress issues and it can help with our bone health as well. It is also a good source of Copper, Vitamin C and Iron.
But when taking Maca be aware of this: If you have a low thyroid condition or it is heading towards it, bare in mind that Maca powder may interfere with the normal function of the thyroid gland because it contains goitrogens. Having said that, there is a gelatinized kind of Maca which is boiled and pressurized in order to remove all the starch from it. Nothing else is added. Because of it, this kind of Maca is much easier to digest and because it is boiled, it can diminish the impact of the goitrogens in your thyroid.
Still, be careful and ask for your doctor’s help on this.
I just finished my 90 days routine with the Prosperity Kriya, the Subagh Kriya, which I highly recommend, by the way. It was an experience. And I am sure I will repeat it some other time. Because I do need to work on my Prosperity issues. Not only on earning money but mainly on being opened to new opportunities and be able to capitalize with them. I missed a lot of great opportunities in the past and I am not so sure if I overcome it just yet.
Anyways, now I am doing a 40 days routine with this new Kriya called the Sat Kriya. According to Yogi Bhajan, if you have to pick just one Kriya to do everyday from here to eternity, let it be the Sat Kriya. And it is because this Kriya works nearly everything you need to work, like your digestion system, your central nervous system, your sense of yourself, your creativity among other things. It is one exercise that is a complete Kriya. It makes the energy circulate, it energizes, strengths and heals the body. Plus your internal organs receive a gentle rhythmic massage. Which is a major plus, indeed.
My understanding by practicing this Kriya is that it works your Kundalini energy aka your sexual energy. It let it moves towards your spine. That is the benefit of it. And trust me, it is not a minor benefit. Au contraire. Especially (but not only) for us, menopausal women.
And it is not a hard Kriya to do. You can always begin with 3 minutes and then go up to 7 minutes and then 11 minutes and even 31 minutes. It is up to you. Just commit to it and do it for 40 days straight. Or even 90 days straight.
How to Practice:
Sit on the heels in Rock Pose, knees together. Breathe deep and relax for a few seconds, put your hands together in the Prayer pose and then open with the Adi Mantra Ong Namô Guru Dev Namô. 3 times. When you finish the intro, stretch the arms over the head with elbows straight, until the arms hug the sides of the head. Interlace all the fingers except the index fingers. Men cross the right thumb over the left. Women cross the left thumb over the right. Or as one of my teachers usually said: if you identify yourself with the female energy cross the left thumb over the right; if you identify yourself with the male energy, cross the right thumb over the left. In any case, the spine stays still and straight. Remain firmly seated on the heels throughout the motions of the Kriya.
Begin to chant Sat Naam with a constant rhythm of about 8 times per 10 seconds. As you pull the navel in and up toward the spine, chant Sat from the Navel Point. Feel it as a pressure from the Third Chakra. With the sound Naam, relax the belly.
As you continue in a steady rhythm, the root and diaphragm locks are automatically pulled.
Sat Nam means “I am truth”, “Truth is my identity.” We usually salute people with this mantra. And I love that.
To end it, inhale and gently squeeze the muscles from the buttocks all the way up along the spine. Hold it briefly as you concentrate on the area just above the top of the head. Exhale completely. Inhale, exhale totally and hold the breath out as you apply a firm mahabandh – contract the lower pelvis, lift the diaphragm, lock in the chin, and squeeze all the muscles from the buttocks up to the neck. Hold the breath out for 5 to 20 seconds according to your comfort and capacity. Inhale and relax.
You should ideally rest right after it the same amount of time you did this Kriya. If you do it for 3 minutes, rest for 3 minutes.
I must confess that I hardly rest as much as I should. 😊
To finish this Kriya, you can bring your hands together in the Prayer pose again and sing along the Longtime Sunshine song if you know it or just chant a long Sat and a short Nam.
If you need a visual guidance, take a look at this video below.
It has a very good visual explanation on how to practice it. And in the video below it has the practice with the proper beginning with the Adi Mantra and the rest at the end. I could not find a video with the proper ending with the LongTime Sunshine and the long Sat and short Nam. But you can have a look at the end of this Kriya to know it.
For a very long time, I considered that any type of yoga was not for me. I tried a few times a class here and there but none spoke to me. None. So I gave up trying and I ended up falling in love with Qi-Gong, instead, something more aligned with me. And for years I forgot about yoga.
A few years ago, maybe 3 or 4, I decided to give yoga another try to see if there was any change on that. I don’t remember exactly why, though. Maybe a need to add extra exercise to my life? Anyways, I went for a Restorative Yoga with Reiki class because Reiki was something I have tried before and loved and guess what? I loved it. So much that I kept on practicing every week and even decided to try other types of Yoga to see if I like them as much as well. Yoga was for me, after all. And Kundalini was one of the types of yoga I decided to try.
However, the first class I attended I did not like it at all. And for 1 year I forgot about Kundalini. Until one day, when I was back to New York City I decided to try it again. And boom! I totally feel in love with. My instructor at Awakening in Greenpoint, Zita Harkaran had such an enthusiasm and a glow that I wanted to have that too. Plus, I felt so good… It was like something had lighted me up inside. So, I attended her class every week for the whole time I stayed in New York. When I returned to Rio de Janeiro, unfortunately I could not find any Kundalini classes and lost a bit the motivation to continue. But started reading about it.
At least that.
Because of my estrogen shortage and its side effects (vaginal dryness, low libido, underwhelming orgasms in particular) due to my menopausal state, in the back of my head, there was this voice whispering to me to pursue Kundalini because it could be a good addition to my recovery routine since Kundalini works with the Kundalini energy which is our holy sexual energy. A precious extra help to solve one of the remained things not yet solved, so I thought. And for that I should embrace it and practice more often to get the benefits.
Then last year, when I returned for my 3 months in New York City I decided to look for a place where I could practice more often. I would obviously keep attending Zita’s class cause she is such an inspiring teacher and I love her classes. And googling Kundalini near me I found a studio: Kundalini Yoga East. There they have this promo: you pay $39 and attend as many classes as you like for 30 days. Irresistible, right?
Then I started my 30 Kundalini days. Okay, I did not attend a class every single day but at least 5 or 6 days a week, I did. And from the very first class I was in love. Although it was really hard. The postures, the practice and the fact that back then I was completely out of shape due to my knee injury… It was hard. And my body got all sore for maybe two weeks til I got used to exercising again. But it was a good pain.
Anyways, the experience was so powerful and insightful that I got hooked. In the best way. I don’t know if my experience was that strong due Kundalini itself or a combination of Kundalini and my level 2 Reiki (that I had completed the day before my first Kundalini day). In any case, it was amazing. I am so grateful for it…
So many good things happened to me after I started practicing it. To begin with, I got my very own Kundalini glow. During my first week, I felt as if my Crown Chakra had became wider with a brighter light. (I also got a headache that went away pretty soon, so it was not all good). At the end of the first week on a Friday class some of my estrogen shortage side effects went away. I am not overstating. It did. Just like that.
Okay, for years I have been working with my sexual energy or Kundalini energy as you rather call it due to my Qi-Gong practice since it is the same energy used. Maybe that is why was that fast for me. But my Kundalini practice also helped with other issues that I was trying to deal with, with no luck, such as: going back to the dating game (after a long time not being able to actually make it happen, I did and for my surprise all went pretty smooth), thawing my heart ( I even ended up falling in love after a long time), becoming more vocal after being way too monosyllabic… And the icing on the cake: for the first time I felt I belonged to and that I was a spiritual person. My whole life I practice spiritual things like Qi-Gong, Meditation, Tai Chi and even Yoga but had never felt myself as a spiritual being. With Kundalini, I did. I guess that is what it is called Kundalini Awakening.
After my 30 Kundalini days, I kept up attending classes as usual. I loved so much to just give up. I even went to a White Tantric Yoga event in NY where we have to hold a posture for 30 or 60 minutes throughout a whole day. And it was an amazing experience. And not as hard as I taught it would be. Right after it I felt lighter. They say you would feel the difference some days later, but for me, that was it. I will definitely attend another one when I have the chance.
Since then I have been practicing Kundalini in regular basis. Even now that I am back to Rio. I practice on my own (everyday, by the way) and when I can, I attend a local studio that I love very much, Medicina da Consciência. Yep, I finally found a place here. I still have a lot more to accomplish and overcome as a B12 deficient, poor Methylator, Menopausal and Messed Up Woman, but I am so grateful to have found a practice that I can feel it is helping me to go through all of those things…