The Adventures of Hot Flash Holly
Dr. Jennifer Purkee welcomed Molly into her office and motioned for her to sit in the overstuffed chair. Molly eased herself onto the chair, and wondered how old Dr. Purkee was. She looked to be in her late 40s or early 50s.
Depression is part of the game. Just give up on ever being happy again. The best years are over. Curl up in the fetal position, have another glass of wine and watch your belly get so big you can’t see your toes.
Molly was really trying to eat healthy foods and exercise most days of the week. She still felt like she had a dark cloud over her head that just wouldn’t go away. She knew she was bitchy at work, and almost felt badly when she snapped at her co-workers. If they only knew she hadn’t slept all night, they would feel sorry for her. Like that would ever happen. They were terrified she would fire them!
She had fallen back into the routine of having a glass of wine every night before going to bed so she could sleep. It didn’t help her sleep, but it took the edge off her depression…at least for an hour or so. Then she was more depressed than ever. And she couldn’t sleep. It was a vicious cycle and she felt as if she was a hamster spinning around in a cage and going nowhere.
Molly struggled to get out of bed the next morning, but went for her morning walk even though she grumbled all the way. She liked being a martyr. She could blame being a bitch on sleepless nights. If she slept all night, she might have to be nice to her staff. That would be a major adjustment for all of them.
Molly remembered what Holly had said. She didn’t want this cloud over her head forever. She called Dr. Hormoneous before going to the office. She explained what had been happening to his nurse and got an appointment for the next day.
Dr. Hormoneous checked her out, looked at her records and the latest blood tests. “We’re going to change your prescription. I think bio identical therapy might be a better fit for you.” He wrote out a prescription. “Take this to the pharmacy listed and they will fill it.” He took out another sheet of paper and wrote on it. “Jennifer is a colleague of mine and specializes in women who are going through menopause. Don’t be scared off by the fact that she is a psychiatrist. If anyone can help you with the depression, she can.” He put his hand on Molly’s slumping shoulder. “Don’t think you have to tough this out and go through it by yourself. We are here to help you.” He smiled at her. “And once you get over this milestone, you’ll wonder why you dreaded turning 50.”
Molly’s eyes narrowed. How could he possibly know what it felt like to be 50. He was probably in his 40s. Reluctantly, she took both pieces of paper and stared at them. At least he was giving her hope that she would get through this phase of her life without ripping someone’s face off for looking at her the wrong way. Women had been going through this for hundreds of years. Maybe it would be good to talk to someone about the way she felt. It had to be more than just turning 50 that was making her so sad.
“I’m 62,” the doctor said with a smile. “All my patients seem to want to know if I can relate to menopause and the depression that sometimes goes with it.”
So she was a mind reader as well as a doctor. Molly decided she had better clean up her thoughts. A little older than Dr. Hormoneous, but there was something going on between them. Interesting.
Molly had to admit she was shocked at the doctor’s age. She looked fantastic. A few wrinkles, but she looked…happy. “How can you look younger than me and be more than ten years older?” Molly demanded. “That just isn’t fair.”
“Fairness has nothing to do with it,” Dr. Purkee said in a no-nonsense tone of voice. “I maintain a healthy lifestyle, meditate, and have a positive outlook. I don’t let a number define who I am.” Dr. Purkee met Molly’s skeptical gaze with a challenge. “Is that something you would like for yourself?”
After a few sessions with Dr. Purkee, taking her new medication, ignoring the wine, and starting to meditate, Molly was sleeping better almost every night. She started writing in a gratitude journal and was surprised at the number of things she was grateful for. Maybe 50 wasn’t the end of the world. She started volunteering at a local food bank. She thought about what she really wanted to do and just never took the time. She had always been interested in archeology. Maybe she would take a class and go on an expedition. A real vacation. She hadn’t had a real vacation in years.
Note: This website is meant to entertain and enlighten. The only advice intended is for women to take charge of their health and their bodies. You know your body better than anyone. If you are not getting the answers you need, seek a second or third opinion. Research, research, research. There is a lot of information regarding menopause, symptoms and help. Get the best information and treatment possible and then move forward so you can enjoy the journey!
“Molly, Molly, Molly.” The now familiar voice inside her head kept returning. Hot Flash Holly buzzed around her head and then settled on her chest. “You were doing so well with the healthy eating and exercise. Don’t you think there might be better solutions to your depression than a bottle of wine?”
Molly groaned. “Leave me alone. I’ll figure it out. And what’s wrong with a glass of wine. Wine is good for you.”
“Not the way you use it. Haven’t figured that out yet? Do you want that dark cloud hovering over your head forever?” Holly stood on Molly’s chest, her hands on her hips. “It’s time to get some real help. Call Dr. Hormoneous in the morning. Get your prescription changed. Get a referral to a doc who can help you through this. Stop being a martyr!”
Molly was silent for a moment and thought about Hot Flash Holly. It was her alter-ego who encouraged her to make changes. She had said the same thing about letting her age define who she was. She wondered what the good doctor would think if she told her about Holly. She decided against it for now. Maybe later.