The hot flash comes and I can smell myself begin to sweat. This is not a pungent odor but rather I smell as though someone is pressing rich dark earth through my pores like coffee grounds through an espresso machine. I smell like fertile soil. I smell like you could plant beautiful flowers under my skin and the blooms would be breathtaking.

Dampness spreads across my body so quickly that I wonder if this change of clothes will survive. And the heat! How do I not burst into flames? My breathing changes as I am actually a bit afraid of the hot flash. So much power. So much fire. My mouth is parched and my face is flushed. And then it passes.

Now comes the cooling that can only come after the stark contrast of fire. I feel as though I have been warming myself by a campfire and have suddenly stepped away into a cold wintery night. I can’t even remember how hot I was a few minutes before. Now all I can do is seek warmth.

How can I embrace the fire, the cold, the power? How can I love this stage of life that has so many contradictions? Menopause, you intrigue me.

Tara McDaniel

Tara McDaniel

Tara McDaniel, poet, healer, artist and teacher, is a NIASZIIH healer practicing in Portland, Oregon (at Shanti Om Massage & Ayurveda Services). Learn more here. Meet her on her Facebook page and learn more about her healing. Find her art at Taradise Cards on Etsy! Also, look for more from her here at Me-At-Last!