My Perimenopause Journey – Part 3

Jun 2, 2023 | Menopause | 0 comments

I started my business during the pandemic because I wanted to help people as so many friends and family were going through a huge range of emotions and symptoms and they needed help. I have always been asked by my network for naturopathic advice, so it seemed like a natural progression to make it into a business. Little did I know how much I needed Melistic though. When we reach our forties, life becomes a bit of a rollercoaster. With our declining hormone levels and cycle changes our bodies struggle to stay on an even keel and we can have such a myriad of symptoms that on their own appear to be normal run-of-mill stuff but if you sit back and take stock and add them all together you can see why so many women go off the rails of life during the menopause years.

During the pandemic, and after we got back to normal, I was caring for my mother who had cancer, working full time and coping with a multitude of perimenopause symptoms. The only thing that got me through this period of my life was my mindset. I exercised every day, it was the only thing I could control at the time and wow did it pay off. I had goals of being fit and staying sane in this weird world. It helped that I had a partner in crime who would walk miles with me talking about our new business goals and helping each other get through each day. Together we shed blood, sweat and tears, and some weight which was a bonus!

Meanwhile while I began helping my clients, I realised I wanted a qualification to assist me and bolster my knowledge. I had always wanted to study with the College of Naturopathic Medicine and one day whilst scrolling on Instagram the advert came up to become a Health Coach. I jumped up and started dancing around, it was like someone had dropped that advert into my lap as a gift. I was so excited I talked to my family and friends and even my clients and they all encouraged me to take the leap and learn.

It was the best decision I ever made. Just because you have a successful career does not mean you cannot look for new opportunities, especially when they incorporate your passion. It took me eighteen months to complete my qualification and I have learned so much about nutrition, exercise, coaching, and myself. As a Health Coach, I inspire my clients to make positive, long-term changes, helping them reach their health goals and achieve balance in their work, home life, and relationships. It is the best feeling when you help someone feel better, and for me even better when its helping women make her hormones better.

It was whilst studying that I decided to go on HRT. I had tried to go the natural route of perimenopause by eating a balanced diet, plant oestrogens, and herbal remedies such as evening primrose oil, CBD Oil, black cohosh, angelica, ginseng, and St John’s wort. However, whilst I had some relief from my symptoms, my brain fog was hitting me the hardest. I just did not feel like myself and that my life was slipping through my hands and passing me by. I was not living my best life so it was time for more action. I like millions of other women in the UK tuned in to watch the Davina McCall documentary on menopause. What hit home was the dementia aspect for me and because my brain was so foggy it changed my opinion on HRT and how I should be tackling my own issues.

Both my Nan and my mum and her sister all had dementia and none of them took HRT. It was a light bulb moment of clarity that it was the right course of action for me so I could prolong my brain health and so my daughter hopefully would not have to cope with me and dementia in later life. Dementia is devastating for the families of the loved one who suffers as they become a totally different person. I wanted to change this narrative for my family.

My NHS doctor is amazing and she was so open to me starting HRT. I know this isn’t the case for many women who approach their GPs so for that I am grateful. However, if this is happening to you do not give up and get a second opinion or change surgeries. Or if you can afford it go private. I started with an Oestrogen gel every day two pumps and the progesterone pills for two weeks of each cycle.  The gel is easy to apply and I always put it on my thighs as when I tried my arms, I had a really bad body odor….yuck!. Within a week of starting HRT, I felt better about myself and it was a real confidence boost. When you’re not functioning correctly it has a knock-on effect to every aspect of life, relationships, and confidence levels.

Over the next few months, I kept a diary of how I was feeling and I have continued to do this on my menopause journey. It became apparent that my sleep was being affected by the progesterone and that was horrendous for me as I have always had great sleep patterns and I LOVE my sleep. Now, in true Mel style of course no one else had this problem, and no matter how many people I asked it was just me that was affected this way. Even my doctor was perplexed! So, we re-evaluated my prescription and we switched to continuous progesterone, and within a month my sleep was getting back to normal. I was so relieved. My top tip for HRT is that it is not a one size fits all magic pill, patch or gel that fixes you. It is something you will need to monitor now for life and by keeping a diary you can work with your GP to keep your symptoms on track and to keep you sane of symptoms.

So, my journey on HRT has been good thus far and I encourage anyone who is struggling to talk to their GP about HRT. It has moved on since the cancer scare stories and more and more research is being carried out now to support women of the future generations which is awesome to see. I would implore you to start talking about menopause, your symptoms, and your struggles because together we can rise up and support each other and improve our lives. You do not have to suffer alone and by sharing your story you may just help someone else!

I hope my story resonates with you and if you need help please get in touch. Book a free consultation to talk about how to change your story and start living your best life!

Take Care

Mel x