So I spent my 20s attending weddings. My 30s cuddling lots of lovely new babies. My 40s supporting friends through divorces. And as I enter my fifth decade it looks like attending 2nd weddings is the new black!
But it is a very different matter attending a wedding when you are a menopausal woman then when you are a young hot 20 something. Take my experiences of attending my friends marriage at the weekend.
Outfit Choice!! I used to look for the clingiest sexiest outfit possible. But not now. I had six months notice of this wedding and had planned to lose 20 pounds for it – a jump on the scales ;ast week revealed just 25 pounds to go!! FFS! I put this down to pre-minstral tension (yes I didn’t mispell that – – self medication on round circles of chocolate alleviates the perfect storm that is PMT and Peri Menopause). I am also a bit skint from menopausal poverty (ladycare magnets; supplements; holidays to cheer myself up and tena lady don’t come cheap) so really wanted to avoid spending money. My partner helpfully said there must be something in the wardrobe given it is so full that everything falls on your head when you open it. So I decided to have a good look.
Three hours later and I have said Fuck; Cunt; Bastard more times than I’ve had hot dinners. I am a bit drunk as my partner knows that when this language ensues then the only solution is Jack Daniels and Coke and has been passing glasses through as I try and ram my body into clothes that have mysteriously shrunk. I have rammed everything that doesn’t fit into black bags for the attic – to be brought down when I have lost four stone. I am left with three smock tops, three pairs of leggings, jeans that used to be very baggy but now look like skinnies and a couple of maxi dresses. All my lovely shoes are still there though – I love shoes – they don’t abandon you just cos you are a bit chunkier.
So the conclusion is I have to shop. Off I go a bit pissed and clutching my credit card. A few hours later and I have something that will do. As long as no one sees my side view. Not bad from front but arse and tummy need their own postcodes and so side view not flattering!! I am most depressed (seriously forget personal shoppers – put menopause counsellors in these changing rooms to provide support when the size 18s won’t feckin do up) but then I discover the Hats section. And the shoes section. Hats and shoes are nice. They are my friends. I get an amazing hat and some amazing tartan shoes and i am happy. Very skint now but the bride and groom said no presents and so all in all I think it balances out.
Off to the wedding and we try to remind ourselves of names of all the new partners that will be there. Menopausal brain fog means I find it hard enough to remember friends of 40 years standing let along new partners of a few years. We get to the hotel. My Hat!! My feckin Hat!! My glorious lovely Hat. It isn’t there. FFS FFS FFS. I have forgotten it – this forgetfulness is doing my head in. I start to cry. My partner doesn’t understand and refuses to drive 3 hours home to get it. So I cry some more til we decide if I get a nice updo at the hairdresser next to the hotel it will be a good compromise. Then even worse – I only have one bloody shoe. Hows is this even possible. Fuck it – I will wear my blue sketchers – I think I can carry it off.
The wedding goes with a swing. There is one close call where I meet a frienemy who cheerily tells me she is wearing the same outfit that she did on the brides first wedding. She laughs joyously as she says she thinks she might even be lighter than she was then. ‘how bloody wonderful for you’ I say as sarcastically as I can before being dragged away to the rather stunning buffet. I am relieved to see there are a number of other fatties -there was an array of fat bellys in the weddings in our 20s but normally they were baby bumps – they now are the result of the menopausal midriff. There are so many intolerants now (lactose/gluten/animal) mean that there is loads for the ‘tolerate anythings’ like me so I get stuck in – waste not want not and all that.
The first dance is a success – at the first wedding the bride was so pissed she ended up lying on the dance floor and ordering everyone just to dance round her. So this is a win.
Then it’s a bit of boogying for all of us. Ok so ‘Hot Stuff’ and ‘This Girl is on Fire’ have different connotations now – but I can still dance like no-one is watching. I start to wonder if the DJ is taking the piss when they follow that up with Katy Perrys ‘you’re hot then you’re cold’ and am about to address the issue when I am reminded I am a bit pre menstrual and we had come to an agreement I would not ‘address issues’ at these times.
At 10pm we have a quick debate whether that is too early to go back to the hotel and sleep. My social life is often planned to allow me to be in bed for 9.30pm as menopausal exhaustion kicks in then – these second weddings should really take account of this… maybe have brunch weddings or something. But then the slosh comes on – the song of all Scottish Weddings – so I dive in to lead the way – I am BRILLIANT at the slosh and the good thing is the more drunk I get the better I get at it!! We manage through to 11pm which is a huge win and stagger upstairs and are asleep by approximately 11.10pm.
Then it is time to head home – to find a forlorn tartan shoe on the driveway that is soaked through with rain. And a grumpy sweet dog who wanted to come too and is gutted to have been left behind. We snuggle up and look at the facebook pictures of the wedding and frequently have to email people to take the fecking pictures of me looking a size 18 down. I mean I am a size 18 but really – there are ways and means of photographing round that – mainly taking shots from the boobs up.
PS Happy Menopause Day to one and all!!!
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