Monday, July 26, 2010


If I hadn't already experienced menopause...I'd swear I'm going through it. Or, going through it AGAIN ! 2003 was enough...or, so I thought.

I was one of the lucky ones, going through menopause, who did not have flashes. But now the long weeks of incredibly high temperatures and humidity have created havoc with my body. I live over a dry-cleaning, laundry plant. I threw away my indoor thermometer when I spent my first summer here. The heat and steam from downstairs naturally rise to my apartment. Now I have 2 air conditioners. My office and my living room. I live in those rooms only. I love to cook and bake. I've had no appetite...existing on simple finger food.

Back in 2003, I do remember heightened periods of "sensitivity" to remarks made by friends and co-workers. Ah, I see that issue has returned, too.

People used to remark about my incredible memory. I used to say: I have freeze-dried memory. Peri-menopause squashed that ability. It's gotten much better, but not to the original strength. Now, I can't find the right word, or can't remember the simple, relevant stuff.

A close friend made a fairly innocent comment to me recently. It was meant to be a helpful remark. But, I got into my emotional elevator and pushed DOWN. Why?

My journey towards illumination, and my work, allows me to realize introspection is not something to be denied or feared.  It's meant to be explored fully. I accepted the sadness. I tasted it. I explored it like a child.

In my hours of "innocent remark" inspection, I found it difficult to become superior to it.

Within the past hour, I've discovered why. I've spent the past month watching my mother become more ill every day. My suggestions to go to the hospital were unheeded. One morning, we could no longer ignore her status. Swiftly, we went to the emergency room.

I'll admit: I have "issues" with our local hospital. In 2003, I lost my job with downsizing at this hospital. I worked there 19 years and had a fairly high-level position. I negotiated medical-surgical contracts...everything from bandaids to body part implants. Everyone in that hospital knew me; most liked me, too. Even my sales reps, who often feared going toe-to-toe with me during lengthy contract negotiations, invited me to their family functions. These same sales reps, came to my father's funeral in 2000. I was tough, but fair and honest. I was respected.

Taking my mother to the hospital last week, I became simply an outsider. I had no power to get a faster answer to her call bell. I could no longer go to the lounge and make her a simple cup of tea. I was unknown. I had lost my "insider" power.

To make matters worse, I saw my old boss as I was entering the elevator. The door opened, I saw his same mean, aloof expression and I said, "No thanks, I'll wait for the next one."  As the door began to close, he smirked "Suit yourself."  I replied, "I just did." 

I did a superior job at the hospital.  In the end, it made no difference. I'm trying to do an equally superior job with important things in my life right now.  The difference?  I'm "trying", rather than "doing".  That innocent remark is digested now and I can finally push UP.

1 comment:

  1. Sam,I had to laugh at the start because I remember so well the "fun" of going through menopause. I did have those nice hot flashes to the point of waking up in the middle of the night soaking wet and cussing. And, yes, this heat does bring back many memories.

    I can relate to your post so well. I don't have that problem at the hospital; probably because I still work PRN. But, I have learned that hospital administration, including most managers don't really care about the staff. They will use and abuse as long as they can get by with it.

    My dad had the same opinion about going to the hospital. He refuses...

    Love your post. Keep it up.