Wow, the weather has cooled, but that’s about all. For several years I’ve heard friends and sister-in-laws complain about hot flashes. Even as recent as a month ago, I was feeling quite satisfied that I’d dodged that bullet, having never had one. Then, from one day to the next, as the temperatures outside cooled, the body temperature rose, in flashes, unexpected, unannounced, and unpredictable. I’ll be driving along enjoying the beautiful autumn-colored leaves and suddenly my car seat heater will be on high. I wonder how I might have accidently pressed the heat button, but it’s not lit. I realize that my burning hot seat is not the seat, but my body. Or I’ll be sitting in class, cool, calm and collected, and suddenly I feel like I’m having a fever of 105 degrees. Wow. How does that happen? I can’t explain anything about it. Often in the night I wake–wide awake, feeling like I’m wrapped in an electric blanket turned on High. I throw back the covers to let the cool air in and realize after a moment or two that it was just another flash, and I need those blankets again.
Do I wear a sweater when I go out? Do I need to carry one of those collapsible Chinese fans? Is my skin turning as red as it feels? Am I really turning the A/C on more now than I have all summer? Am I really a Middle Aged Woman? Wow. Amazing to be asking such questions on such a cool crisp Fall day.