“We have to be careful with the claims that we make. We can’t promise a 70 year old she’s gonna have a 19 year old vagina. It’s not gonna happen.” That little fun fact by Dr. Somi Javaid, in her conversation with Dave Asprey on Bulletproof Radio. And it’s part 5 of a sexual energy series where we learn what’s possible for a woman in midlife going through perimenopause and menopause, why weight gain is not your fault and what to do about it, how to manage your hormones so they don’t manage you and what’s love got to do, got to do with it.
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Anxiety, depression, thinning hair, weight gain, extreme mood changes, moodiness, difficulty sleeping, low libido, digestive issues, night sweats, day sweats...just sweats. And not the cute matching sets that are sweats or the “50 Shades of Gray” that you wish you had sweat sex but the sheet soaking, clothes flying, heat radiating, like you’re dying in the middle of the night kind of sweats. Because “these, are the days of our lives” as a 40 plus woman in hormonal hell.
And along with the new and exciting changes that are, perimenopause and menopause. Time and gravity double down with the first, fun physical signs of aging. And now that we’re besties, both gravity and I, we work as a team to do all that we can to pull my every body part as close to the earth’s core as humanly possible. It’s all truly, the gift that keeps on giving. And also why God made push up bras and Spanx. Because nothing defies age better than my boobs touching my chin.
Not to confuse what we think of as aging with getting old. Getting old is a state of mind. If you don’t believe me, check out the episode with Jane Fonda who’s 82 and younger than most young people. But aging, or what I think of as aging are the signs of change and hormonal upheaval that cause havoc in your life. I feel like It happens slowly and over such a long period of time that it can fly under your radar until, bam! You’re in the crossfire, managing and reacting, convincing yourself, myself, along with the generous help of society, that it’s normal and you’re just “at that age. Things start to fall apart,” like a well worn pair of sneakers. While some things are definitely common, many don't have to be normal. And having some awareness around the potential pitfalls of what we’re experiencing gives us the choice to do something about it rather than accept it. I don’t blindly accept the norm and neither should you. Because what is, doesn’t always have to be. Question EVERYTHING! We aren’t sheep. We don’t have to follow the herd into this quiet life of desperation. Life is not quiet. It’s noisy and messy and beautiful and so are we. And remember our goal from the beginning of this podcasting journey? We want to be optimal. Normal blows...Mic drop!
Ten years ago when my health started to decline and I didn’t know what was going on, just that something was wrong, my desperation turned into my partner's frustration. And over time, this led to some really great advice like “I bet if you’d go eat a cheeseburger, it would probably fix everything”...shit why didn’t I think of that?! Or, “do you think maybe you’re just getting old?” Head slapper, of course! I mean I was the ripe ole age of 35 which is close to 40, and with basically half my life over, you could argue I was pretty much near death. No wonder I wasn’t feeling well! Although, he is 6 years older than me, and had zero health issues at the time but I guess if you think about it, I was 245 in dog years and maybe it was just my time to go. Fortunately, though this old dog had some tricks up her sleeve.
My options, suck it up and deal or keep to myself and do things on the down low. I chose the down low. Because the alternative, do nothing and get worse, was not really an alternative. I was sick, not stupid. So, I became my own advocate, did a shit ton of research and stood up for myself when no one else would. And you wouldn’t believe the things people would say to me, like, “I don’t get it, I’m fine, there’s nothing wrong with me, so there shouldn’t be anything wrong with you right?” But that’s not how it works fucker. And I don’t need you to get it. It’s not my responsibility to make you get. I just need you to accept it, accept me. Because I am done feeling bad for feeling bad. And whether it’s a general illness or something more specific to women’s health, I deserve better...and so do you.
What I love about Dr. Jovaid is her passion and enthusiasm for women’s health and her willingness to stand up for and advocate for our right to equal, affordable care. Like Dave said, we aren’t mini men, we have a completely unique biology and while we may be similar, we aren’t the same. Meaning, we need a different standard of care. It’s March and we’re celebrating women’s history month but it might be better to focus on women’s health history this month. And measuring where our health is now with where it’s been so we can optimize where it’s going. While Dr. Jovaid is doing her part, we gotta do ours.
There’s no reason to suffer needlessly like I did. It took until I was at my wits end with my hair falling out before finally checking my thyroid. And even longer to test my hormones that I knew were out of whack and causing dry skin, low energy, anxiety...the list goes on. And these things take about a year before really noticing the benefits so you might wanna start now.
By doing our research, finding a good doc, getting the right tests...all the things. We have way more agency over our body than we realize and it is imperative that we care for it on the inside as well as the out. The food we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink, the thoughts we think and the actions we take all affect who we are and how we express. And that’s honestly, just the basics.
Throw in a few hot flashes, a little murderous intent and what seems like an overnight middle, named after a baked good, aka the muffin top, and we’ve got a perimenopausal party. No doubt, It can feel like a shit show. And many of us, like myself, are still “in the middle” of it.
“But no matter how overwhelming our anxiety’s might be, they will soon be resolved when we are dead and buried for all eternity.” The X-files, season 10, episode 3. When Special Agent Fox Mulder, the handsome and talented David Duchovny, questioned a therapist about a suspect he was treating. The therapist's prescription...go for a quiet stroll through the local cemetery and remind yourself that none of this matters because that’s where you will eventually end up. I’m currently binge watching that entire series. It’s so fun! And believe it or not, that scene was hilarious. Especially with what Fox says. “you really think that's sound therapeutic advice?” Knee slapper. Nothing like thinking about death to spark a little life. Oh God, that’s so messed up. I clearly have issues.
So let’s take a minute and celebrate. We’re still here, we’ve made it this far and we have many more options and opportunities than ever. But it’s up to us to take advantage of them.
And you can bet my flat ass that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Because health care isn’t my only care. This lady needs a little cosmetic care. The latest tools and techniques that can plump our parts, resurface our surface and shape our shape got me pumped, no pun intended, to check out what else Dr. Javaid has to offer. Because her office is only 20 minutes from where I live and I’m thinking a field trip might be just what the doctor ordered. And from my research, she’s not the only one that offers a 360 degree approach to women’s health. I bet if you took a quiet internet scroll around your local area, you’d find a one stop shop that suits your own needs as well.
I really enjoyed this and the rest of the interviews in the Sexual Energy Series hosted by Dave. Check them all out if you get a chance, along with the full episode, #791, “New Options for Women’s Sex Lives” on Bulletproof radio. Links to that and both Dr. Javaid and Dave’s social media are in the show notes below.
If you enjoyed today’s podcast please subscribe and share with someone you think might benefit and until next time, Thanks for listening.