Something happens to a woman when she reaches middle age. She’s basically had enough of everything and certainly enough of acting as the giver. I once heard women joke that menopause stands for “pause from men” and in a way it does.
My naturopath and experts on menopause inform me that when the change comes she’s ready to let go of baggage. She wants to spend time absorbing vibrations from the natural world. And she longs to go deeper with God, Source, or the Divine Feminine (whatever name you have for the cosmos).
But I don’t have to rely on experts for this information since it’s happening firsthand for me. After I turned 51 years old, I stopped the monthly bleeding or what I once called the monthly curse. I sweated and burned my way through the year and now I’m ready to head to a mountain with the women closest to me and celebrate a rite of passage.
It’s true that I don’t want to be around men who never gave up their teenage angst or habits. I don’t want to live in a home that resembles a bachelor pad. I don’t want to clean up after anyone and I don’t want to get saddled babysitting someone’s kids. I have nothing against children or teens as I prepare for my mentoring years, however, my freedom and space became luxuries and not something I willingly relinquish. I am the quintessential free spirit these days.
I burned away my insecurities and reached that a place of self-actualization. Meaning, I finally don’t care what anyone thinks or feels about me. This doesn’t give me the excuse to act badly towards others, but it does permit me the freedom to act authentic. I also am no longer a game-player whether that’s in the job market or in the political arena. My intuition has expanded to the point where my BS detector is constantly on alert. And when I dress nicely these days it’s for myself or to bring beauty into the world and not to get attention from men.
I have always experienced the Artemis archetype or perhaps I’m a bit roughshod like the huntress Diana who turned a man into a stag because he peeked at her naked body. Then she sent her hounds after the man–poor guy, he didn’t have a chance. During the menopause years, Artemis transforms into the wise crone Hecate–not that I want my body to shrivel up like a prune anytime soon.
Depending on the archetype that defines a woman, she experiences menopause in her own unique way. The mother archetype feels distraught over the empty nest when her children leave home. But now she can delve into her real dreams and create something substantial for the world.
The Aphrodite archetype learns that plastic surgery and chasing after men will not bring her wisdom or true sustenance. Aging is her greatest fear as is the loss of power as men turn away from her aging face and sagging breasts. She sails through the passage successfully if she redirects her focus from her sexual body to her heart.
The Artemis/Diana Archetype struggles with her ambitions. If she has not risen to the heights she envisioned as a young adult, she might take it out on her co-workers or peers. She might become embittered and take it out on those she sees as entitled such as white men. If she ventures in a positive direction she reassesses her career and veers onto a new course. She might return to school or forge a career as an entrepreneur. She certainly has the hunting and networking skills work for her, but she requires redirection. Often times she believes she holds the same dreams she had in her twenties.
Originally, I planned on writing a wickedly funny post on pause from men. Instead, I ended up writing about Greek archetypes. Such is life. But I do know this. It’s perfectly okay if menopausal women experience their Liz Gilbert moments and divorce their husbands. It’s not that they can’t stand their husbands (or maybe that is the case), but that a more expanded version of themselves begs for exploration.
And if a menopausal (early into the passage) don’t feel like dating or getting involved in intimate relationships with either sex, that’s actually normal. It doesn’t suggest that the sex drive won’t ever return, only that it has taken a backburner. Personally, I feel like a high priestess or pagan nun these days. I have used my Second Chakra energies to create art and to venture into areas I only dreamed of in my twenties when I was worrying about whether a man liked me or not. (The Artemis archetype often turns off men with her competitive spirit).
Feel free to leave a comment if you are a woman taking a pause from men. The funnier the better. Laughter is excellent medicine.
I’m an astrologer and intuitive coach entering my mentor years. If you would like some wise advice, sign up for a reading at Whole Astrology