Debra Chew: Women And Balancing The “Change Of Life”

Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - by Debra Chew

My favorite act at the circus is the balancing act.  You know, the guy walking the tightrope, balancing each step he takes so that he doesn’t lose his equilibrium and come crashing down.  Sometimes life can make women feel like they are walking a tightrope and that the least change will take them off balance and they will come crashing down.

Unfortunately, women walk that daily tightrope, and when the focus is on multi-tasking, it is easy to find one’s self  emotionally, physically, and spiritually depleted and out of balance at the end of the day.  While a good diet, regular exercise, and managing stress will help you stay in balance physically, I find it is equally important to take time to feed and exercise your spiritual self.  

For years women have been told by magazines, friends, and TV personalities/doctors that their feelings are regulated by hormones and that when they reach a certain age, these will fluctuate – even more than they already do every month!  Women are also told that as long as the hormones are kept at a correct level, their emotions will, instead, have greater balance.  And, they are told that often the only way to do this is through drugs; and, sometimes, those drugs have serious side effects.  This sets up a real conundrum for 50+% of the world’s population.

If we are experiencing the monthly ups and downs of this hormone imbalance or we are at that stage in life where it is going to shift big time, what can we do?   Is there no way of managing this or permanently correcting it other than through chemicals?  My experience tells me there is.

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to prove it.  I was emotional, I noticed a change in my weight, and some days I just didn’t feel like my usual happy self.  Even though I was racing down life’s roads at a velocity suitable for a Porsche, my body felt more like a slow-moving mini-van… loaded down with a cargo of unfamiliar and uncomfortable passengers.  Since I was unwilling to correct these “passengers” chemically, I knew I had to focus on my spiritual self.  And, I was confident that I did not need to be a victim of ‘change’ and find and experience the balance I needed by turning to God. 

I began taking more time for myself and used that time for prayer - concentrating on ejecting all those unwanted passengers in the mini-van.  I replaced my feelings of discomfort and negativity with uplifted thoughts about God and my relationship to Him.  As I studied and prayed, using the Bible and a companion textbook on Christian healing, I became increasingly aware that balance is a quality I get from God.  Also, that the only things real in my life – and about my health – are those things I get from God. This helped me understand that I could reject feelings or experiences that were outside of God’s Kingdom - fear, insomnia, weight gain, depression, and crazy temperature changes.  

Instead of thinking about all the physical changes going on, I focused on my spirituality and the continuity of the Divine.  God never changes – how could I, made in “His image”, change?   And, I got great comfort from a favorite hymn. A line that reads “no change my heart shall fear” really spoke to me.   I truly had nothing to fear in the “change” that was happening within me.  It wasn’t too long before I began to realize (almost as quickly as it happened) that nothing had changed, except I had ‘changed’ the way I thought about this time in my life.  And, before long, I was speeding down the road in that Porsche once again; no longer teetering on that tightrope but perfectly balanced and feeling divinely controlled.   

Interestingly, I am not the only woman who has used prayer to handle the changes in life.  In recent years, scientists have begun to study the effects of prayer on women going through “the change of life.”  These studies are showing that women indeed benefit during this time by “connecting to a force greater than themselves.”  I’m living proof that this can be an effective way to move through this period of our lives.  You can be too.    

Stop walking that tightrope --- pray --- and for goodness sake, trade that mini-van and its passengers in for a smooth, empty Porsche! 

---

Debra Chew is a self-syndicated columnist and writes about the connection between thought, spirituality and health.  She has been published in the chattanoogan.com, Memphis Commercial Appeal, Jackson Sun Health Magazine, and in the UK.  She is a Christian Science Practitioner and also the media and legislative liaison for Christian Science for Tennessee.  You can contact her at tennessee@compub.org.


Inaugural LIFE FORCE Call Of The Year Awards Recognize Regional EMS Providers

Erlanger Health System’s air medical program, LIFE FORCE, held a ceremony to honor local EMS heroes who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in the inaugural Call of the Year awards during national EMS Week. LIFE FORCE flight crew members and awards committee selected outstanding calls in the categories of Medical, Pediatric and Trauma.   Medical Call of the Year ... (click for more)

Cherokee Health Systems' Chief Clinical Officer To Participate Best Practices Study

Parinda Khatri, PhD, Cherokee Health Systems’ chief clinical officer, has been selected by the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health to join an advisory group of health care professionals that will travel to Spain next month to conduct in-depth research on best practices in health care delivery.   Dr. Khatri will join professionals from ... (click for more)

Bryan Johnson, Timothy Gadson, Stuart Greenberg, Wayne Johnson, Kirk Kelly Are Superintendent Finalists

Bryan Johnson of Clarksville, Tn., was the top vote-getter on the opening round of balloting for Hamilton County school superintendent. The chief academic officer for the Clarksville-Montgomery County School System was on the ballot of all nine school board members at a special meeting on Thursday afternoon. Others who made the cut were Timothy Gadson, a Minnesota educator; ... (click for more)

Man Shot In Home Invasion Early Wednesday Morning

A man was shot in a home invasion early Wednesday morning.   Chattanooga Police responded to a person shot on the 6000 block of Arlena Circle at 4:40 a.m. Upon arrival, police located the victim, Edward Greatheart, 41,  who was suffering from a non-life threatening gunshot wound.   Mr. Greatheart was treated on the scene and transported to a local hospital ... (click for more)

Life For Our Ancestors In 1890

May 26-27 is the 1890’s Day Jamboree in Ringgold. I encourage any reader to attend and enjoy that wonderful community. I love having grown up in Northwest Georgia and celebrating our veterans, including both of my grandfathers who served in WWII.  But I also want to describe how the 1890’s were for my ancestors, living here in a singularly turbulent time. Based on, among ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Governor Haslam, Please!

AN OPEN LETTER TO GOV. BILL HASLAM … Greetings to you, my friend. You know with one more year on the course we have sailed during your two terms as the leader of our state you will go down as one of the greatest governors we have ever had. It stands to reason you eye Lamar Alexander’s Senate seat, but whatever you do it will be hard to replicate your service to Tennessee and ... (click for more)