Menopause And Sleep
Menopause and sleep changes very often share the same bed. Accompanied by disturbances in slumber for about 61% of menopausal women, many are struggling with the impact of sleep deficit during 'the change'.
The reasons why menopause and sleep disturbances occur, we are told, is due to hormonal alterations that happen in a woman's body around this time. But that explanation, in my view, is incomplete as it springs from a male understanding of female fertility and what menopause means.
In this audio and article below, I would like to share feminine wisdom on the connection between menopause and sleep so you can sleep better and feel great about what is happening in your amazing, female body! (This is worth reading even if menopause is way off in the future for you).
Menopause And Sleep - The Context
It is important, first, to understand the context in which we experience menopause and sleep issues. There are two especially strong themes at work here that influence this for us as women.
The first is that our patriarchal world is all about production and getting results. The actual journey, in this mindset, is of little value. Whether you are sleeping or not, the work must be done. And this pressure in the background causes us to resist changes in sleep. Because our ability to get accomplish things - in a pleasant way 🙂 - might be affected!
The second theme is that, in patriarchy, a woman's value has been associated with her youth, the sexual pleasure she provides and her ability to reproduce. Therefore, whether it is said out loud or otherwise, menopause is seen to mark the demise of a woman's worth and creative potential.
So during menopause, not only do we need to adjust to changes within our bodies, we also need to come to terms with the significance of this milestone in a male dominated world. Because female fertility has only been seen through masculine eyes.
When we are not getting the quality of sleep that we need, these changes will be much more difficult to process. Giving rise, at times, to increased stress, depression and a sense of under-acheivement.
Which provides perfect proof that the patriarchal ideas about a woman's value at this time are indeed accurate. With the result that many of us are left feeling angry or disappointed in the female body and have this to deal with on top of everything else.
But contrary to what we have been taught, menopause is a gateway into tremendous feminine power. When we are engaging our feminine wisdom on the journey that is.
Although this post is on menpause and sleep, I would like to share what has been going in my own sleep rhythm as I think there is value in it for you.
This year (my 47th), my sleep pattern began to change. I found myself fully alert in the middle of the night. Every night.
I am not assuming that it is connected to menopause. Indeed, that never crossed my mind until I was writing this article!
But I know that sleep and the nocturnal cycle is connected to the deep womb of feminine wisdom so when this started to happen, I knew that I wanted to work with it.
In the hours of darkness and quiet, it is much easier to hear the gentle whisper of feminine wisdom and her guidance on what really matters in our lives. That is how she communicates.... to begin with.
Most commonly, however, we don't listen to that female voice. Until she has no option but to scream (e.g. with an illness or accident) in order to get what she needs. Like rest and retreat time to reflect honestly on our lives.
I used to be up at 5.30 am because I needed quiet time for me before I could step into the Mama role. Happily!
Making that decision a couple of years ago improved my life, and that of everyone else in the house, enormously! Because, it gave me the time I need to think, process and feel my way in this world.
But in the last year, in response to the changes I mentioned above, I decided to experiment.... Here's what my sleep rhythm looks like now!
And I am totally LOVING it! I have never felt so happy and content with my life. Nor have I ever been able to perceive, before, this level of feminine clarity. But now I can. And I am listening. And the more I engage with my feminine wisdom in this manner, the easier my life flows in every way.
Menopause And Sleep Conclusions
The dance between menopause and sleep is a very personal invitation from feminine wisdom - beckoning you to take a Retreat from Patriarchy™.
Every night and every day.
And, instead of accepting the patriarchal interpretation of what it means to be a woman at this stage of life, believe in your feminine. Enter into a conversation with your own rhythm and cycle. Because your feminine wisdom has treasures for you that will help you realise your deepest desires in the most efficient, sustainable way. If you open up to listening.
So I invite you to experiment with sleep and share below your experience. (Please listen also to the audio below as it is quite different from the text!)
Menopause And Sleep - Audio
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