I used to read these kinds of statements in women's magazines and shudder, hoping to god this wouldn't happen to me. Often this got verified over fish and chips when mum would get together with the 'girls' (her 65-year-old girlfriends) as they laughed and joked about it whilst passing one another the salt and vinegar. I would sit there all ashen-faced and trembling, convincing myself that my sexual appetite was bigger than all of there's put together even in their heyday.
The dreadful truth beloved friends is that I am now one of those women. I am one of those 60-80% who experience a loss in sexual desire during the menopause.
For me (I am sure it's for everyone) this is shocking, disorientating, scary, sad and leaves a big friggin question mark!). Now what?
My whole life was about sex, romance, passion, desire, creativity, ooze and playfulness. I was never the femme fatale, more the naughty 50's pin-up. I loved dressing up and putting on a show, being a bit brazen and exciting. Being a tease that always delivered! Now, I am about as exciting as a brown paper bag. I have nothing - nada. Ziltch.
I have no fantasies, no thoughts, definitely no feelings, and for sure no action. My sex life has ground to a halt. I have not self-pleasured, I do not dress up and I do not dance.
I am at Ground Zero - But still here. I am warm, I am honest and I am open. It's not as if I have closed down everything and have a barbed wire fence around me saying 'Keep Out!'.
But I have allowed this to happen. I have not fought too hard against it. Because I felt there was something incredibly worthy in this journey. I knew that I wanted to go all the way. That I was prepared to die this death, for I believed, and still do, something NEW is going to be born.
Because beloved friends, I have been told, even by my mum - that our sexual desire returns! With bells on.
And this Truth - is my beacon in the dark, because it is dark. It is very dark and very lonely. This stage of the process takes enormous courage and low investment in our ego and identity. You have to be prepared to let it all slide out of view and stand naked and empty, for the new to emerge.
You're probably asking yourself "What about Pete? Where is Pete in all this?" "Didn't you get married only 18 months ago?" Ha - yes! Well, he seems to be in the same position.
I think the problem between us, is that I have been the initiator. Now that I have no desire hormones - there is no initiation, and everything falls down dead.
But I have been checking things out. I have been investigating! My yoni is not dry, nor is any part of my internal anatomy uncomfortable. When I stroke myself in bed with the backs of my nails over my tummy and chest, my skin beads and tingles, so I know, Shakti is there - its just under the surface.
I do feel, that after a certain period (for me it's been two years), it might be a good idea to get things going again. But I was waiting for some undeniable sign, that said NOW! Well, you will be glad to know that my sign came thick and fast (?!) a week ago.
I had a dream that I was witnessing a Herios Gamos Ceremony between a young couple. We were in a cave. It was semi-dark and very ritualistic. The energy was potent. It was as if we were part of a very high-end order. This was the real deal, and being ordained by a mature and sincere group of people. I was holding the space. Maybe a Priestess, perhaps a witness. I don't know. All I know is that I was watching them as they stood before one another. The energy of attraction and magnetism was palpable. They were allowing themselves to slip into the zone and open to the divine counterparts that were emerging within them.
The young woman was undulating and allowing the spirit of the beloved full use of her body. It was incredible. But then a strange thing happened -
She beckoned me over to stand where she was, to see and feel what she was experiencing. I telepathically responded that it would not work if I was standing there. Her wise eyes smiled and beckoned me over again. And this time I walked over. I stood in her position and opened to the experience. I looked at the young man, who did not flinch. He saw me and carried on merging with the beloved within. After some time, there was a moment where he showed me his longing. His eyes bored into mine, as he searched for my soul and found it. His eyes squinted and opened in exaltation and rolled upwards in ecstasy. In the dream (and where my physical was laying) my spine rippled with energy as the look in his eyes took my breath away. In my bed, I was undulating over and over again as I saw the words 'Heiros Gamos' emblazoned across my inner screen. The couple was gone, but the words remained in letters of fire.
That is why I know; this is a process with a beginning, a middle and an end.
If this is what it takes, that my old sexual persona must be incinerated in the pursuit of Truth - then so be it. I accept.
In the meantime, I am going to dance and bring alive my longing for the beloved. To see where it goes, and what it deepens into.