Treating Menopause With Venom
I'm taking snake venom for hot flashes - Lachesis mutus, to be exact. This homeopathic remedy comes from the poisonous venom of the Bushmaster, a greatly feared snake native to Central and South America. The poison of the Bushmaster is deadly if it enters the human bloodstream, but the remedy, Lachesis mutus, is so dilute that almost undetectable amounts of the poison remain. Still, it's a conversation starter that gets a rise out of people.
Homeopathic medicine is based on the principle that 'like cures like,' meaning - substances that produce symptoms similar to a given disease should be used to treat that disease. Homeopathic remedies are tiny, sweet pellets that contain what are essentially extreme dilutions taken sublingually (under the tongue). Since I'm beginning to have hot flashes, my naturopath suggested Lachesis mutus. Apparently, when one is bitten by a venomous snake, one of the first symptoms is a hot flash - therefore, venom from a Bushmaster follows the 'like cures like' principle. Who the heck figured this out? Whatever - it works - and if you've ever had a hot flash (especially during a job interview!), you'll try anything. From time-to-time I do have the urge to curl up on a sunny rock, and occasionally feel like shedding my skin or eating a mouse, but gone are those minutes of internal combustion when you feel like you've suddenly been dropped into an oven set to high broil and would willingly sit naked in an igloo.
As a woman I am blessed with a changing body - transforming at puberty, pregnancy, after childbirth, and again at menopause. Lately, I have a desire to get away, have more time alone to figure out who I am, where I am, and what I want to do. Some may call this a mid-life crisis, but it's not - it's more like the quest for a self that is separate from all other relationships - daughter, sister, mother, wife. Sure, the hot flashes suck - but in a way, I feel as if the flashes have set my brain on fire. Sometimes I have so many creative ideas that I feel like my brain is dripping out of my ears - as if I have a volcanic energy within me and that hot lava just wants to get out! I finally understand Margaret Mead's famous quotation: "The most powerful force in the world is a menopausal woman with zest." Today, I feel free to decide where I will direct my creative energies. I am also okay with the conscious decision I have made to walk away from the destructive people in my life because menopause has forced me to look at and question relationships that I never dared to examine too closely before. Time is too precious to waste. I no longer care if controversial topics which are important to me like atheism, alternative medicine and homosexuality, make other people uncomfortable. I'm being true to my self. Although I probably cannot conceive another child, perhaps like a Bushmaster snake, I am now shedding my old skin and giving birth to my true self.
I blog at 'Peep Into My Life'