Perspectives on resilience + finding joy from three postmenopausal widows

I had to scale back my intentions with this one. I wanted to bring you the testimonies of at least a  dozen post-60s women. But I wasn’t prepared for the reticence of those I asked to share their hopes, struggles, ambitions and menopause stories.

Even the chattiest in the changing room at my Aqua Aerobics class clammed up when it dawned that their voices would be online in podcast perpetuity. “Happy to chat, happy to share, but heavens no Susan, no way do I want to be recorded, even anonymously.” Save for Sara and Teresa, two fellow Aqua Aerobics addicts here in my home patch of Acton Central, in the west London borough of Ealing. And my dear friend Barbs in Cape Town, home of my closest family.

None is on social media. I wanted to sample opinion outside those echo chambers. None has read any of the worthy academic papers or articles from gerontolgists or longevity influencers on the importance of a growth mindset, purpose, acceptance, resilience, relationships.

But in their commonsensical wisdom, they got there on their own.

And you’ll hear they didn’t think for a second to take hormone replacement therapy. Menopause was barely a blip on their radar.

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And how does Barbs’ Cape Town garden grow? Gorgeously!

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