I was reading about weight gain during menopause and happened upon this phrase, “the menopause.” The article stopped me. Not “menopause” but “the menopause.” Not “war” but “the war.” Not “life change” but “the life change.” Not “cancer” but “the cancer.” It reminds of the work usually assigned to a specific noun. The difference between generic and named: professor versus the Professor; woman versus the Woman; mother versus the Mother. But “menopause” was not capitalized. Still it was “the menopause.”
Perhaps “the menopause” is bigger than “my menopause.” More universal. As if “the” can encompass all of the experiences of menopausal women everywhere. We all pass through “the menopause.” A unifying experience. A hand-holding, gathering in a circle, singing songs ritual where we rejoice in the rite of passage known as “the menopause.”
Praise be to our flames of power–firing surges of hormonal heat!
Hallelujah for our hearty middles, jiggling thighs, fluffy flesh!
Amen to the almighty god, the Menopause!