It’s tiny cauliflower season

The day after – literally, the VERY NEXT DAY – I posted about misreading Gental Fitness as Genital Fitness, the sign was changed. I was driving my son to school and exclaimed that the sign now read Gentle Fitness, to which he expressed relief that I would no longer be alluding to elderly men doing something mysterious to strengthen their genitals. Are the people at the fitness centre reading my blog? Or did someone show up at the fitness centre hoping to alleviate incontinence, only to be introduced to aquasize and low-impact aerobics? We may never know the answer.

Oh, you guys, it is SO COLD around here; dropping the kids off at school, my car reads minus 30, and that is without windchill. “It feels like minus 39!” the weather person on the radio said. This should never be a surprise in January, and it isn’t, not really, but it’s quite dreadful. I always think I should re-read The Long Winter at this point in our own winter journey because it SHOULD make me more grateful and thankful to be living in the modern age. I mean, what do I have to complain about, really? That it’s difficult to walk the dog? I have a beautiful, warm, cozy home, I have many warm items of clothing, I have a garage so my car doesn’t freeze. I’m not snowed into some isolated town waiting for the trains to come in with food and supplies and – spoiler alert – those trains never arrive. Sure, my hands hurt, but am I sitting in my dark lean-to in below-freezing temperatures trying to frantically twist hay into little sticks just so I don’t literally freeze to death? Am I grinding seed wheat in an old coffee grinder in the hopes that I will stave off starvation, literal starvation? Am I spiraling into madness because I have been stuck in a tiny dark house for months with nothing to listen to but the howling wind outside? No I am not. My biggest issue is that there was no cauliflower at Superstore.

It’s tiny crappy expensive cauliflower season, which isn’t my favourite but which illuminates something about myself and that is that I cannot – or will not – go without cauliflower for a week. There’s a limit to how much I will pay, because there is always a limit, it is not infinite, but I am willing to pay some pretty high prices for pretty tiny cauliflowers. My demand curve is, shall we say, price inelastic. Am I an addict? Do I have a problem? Probably. There are worse things to spend money on, in my humble opinion.

It is exam time at the high school, and so after one full week back at school my older son now has three weeks off. Well, he has a couple of exams to write in that time period, but really. Three weeks! He doesn’t go back to class until February 3, making my younger son insane with envy. He will get to experience this excessive time off next year, as Thursday is his high school orientation day. Two kids in high school! The children, they get older. I’m getting older too. 

Speaking of getting older, ladies, lean in. The perimenopause thing? A couple of years ago I asked my mom when she stopped getting periods, as that is the number one indicator as to when it would stop for me. When she replied I couldn’t believe my ears – it indicated another full decade of these ridiculous symptoms. Well, what can you do. The symptom I am finding the most difficult to deal with is breast swelling and tenderness. 

“Tenderness.” That seems like a bit of an understatement. It used to be a day before my period my breasts would be slightly sore. Now it’s a week to ten days of my entire chest hurting and my breasts swelling to my pre-kid glory. Even if I do manage to fulfill my New Year’s Resolution of buying a new bra, I’m going to have to hang on to these old ones just for premenstrual comfort. It’s silly, really, my cleavage goes from “bra is gaping around my deflated breasts” to “spilling out of my bra like an old-timey centrefold.” The other day my husband’s eyes bugged out when he walked in on me getting dressed; it probably gave him flashbacks to when we first met.

I for one do not want to relive my Glory Days, the sheer relief I feel when I actually get my period and my yoga tanks go back to fitting properly and I don’t feel like my sports bras are actively trying to kill me softly with their song is immense.

This too shall pass; there will be a time after this.

I had my hair appointment on Friday so once again I feel relatively youthful, at least for another few weeks until the roots start coming in. Life is a roller coaster, I swear. I had a roller coaster emotion as I gazed into my Daylight 10x Magnifying Mirror, and noticed that one of those black chin hairs has turned…white. You know those chin hairs, the ones that are nonexistent in the morning but somehow are an inch long by evening. I’m mixed on this development because a white chin hair is infinitely less noticeable than a black one, and yet. I have also noticed white hairs in my eyebrows, which, I do not know what to do about it. If I start plucking them out will I eventually be bald above my eyes? Do I start using an eyebrow pencil? I just don’t know.

Anyway. It is going to be an odd few weeks; my schedule is exactly the same, or a bit busier as I’ve scheduled some appointments for my older son in during this time. One child at school, one child at home save for the three exams…as I write this I am listening to some amped-up electric guitar as someone is taking a study break. Everything feels a bit unsettled. This week has been too cold to even walk the dog; poor puppers hasn’t had any exercise since Saturday. Since I’m having my ladies’ holidays, AND it’s insanely cold, I’m doing restorative yoga in the early mornings instead of going into the studio. This would be lovely except that I keep forgetting to leave the dog in his crate until after I’m done, which means that he thinks I’m dead or injured, and need to be roused.

With the cold, I wondered how I was going to get my steps in, on non-exercise days. Yes I am a slave to my Garmin watch, what of it? Monday I had to run an errand – at the mall – and noted all the elderly and also moms with strollers, desperate to get out of the house. Hmmm…they are on to something. Yes, I lapped the mall a couple of times before making my purchase, which feels like it goes nicely with the white chin hair. Hey, it was an extra 5000 steps, that was worth it.


  1. Karen Henderson says

    Ah. Peri…the stage of life I didn’t know existed, until Shazam, extremely tender, lumpy breasts. This was just the beginning for me. Estrogen is my friend, who knew? I would take the periods back til the end of time rather than endure another year of symptoms. It’s been about 10 years… Take heart. It’s not this way for every woman. 🙂

  2. OK I know everyone and their mother is sick to death of hearing me proselytize about my IUD but I can’t stop, won’t stop. I’m 50 so began struggling with the joys of peri quite awhile ago and it just sucked. My periods went bonkers – insanely heavy, every three weeks etc; my PMS was ridiculous; my sleep went to heck; and my anxiety got out of hand. Finally my doctor recommended a mirina (sp?) IUD and it has been a game changer. I haven’t had shark week in two years and it’s blunted all of my other peri symptoms (not stopped entirely, but so much better). I wish I could go back in time and tell myself to get it earlier. I just tried to power through for so long and I didn’t have to. ANYWAY, I’ll stop now but I can’t resist the change to spread the word (even when not invited to do so just like any good cult member 😉


    I had a single white eyebrow hair and I looked at it many times a day in the mirror. Eventually it fell out. I imagine it is growing back right now, but still too small to see. Unlike chin hairs, which grow all in one single day, apparently.

  4. I am not a cauliflower person, but it is SO ANNOYING when things get all small and expensive in the winter. For me, I get very irritated by shriveled bell peppers. Those are, to me, what cauliflower is to you. I think. And a soft shrivel bell pepper is Not Acceptable!

  5. That high school exam schedule sounds bazaar to me. Yikes. My hs kids have exams the 3 days before Christmas. Then they relax over break. Used to be a few weeks after Christmas- but either way never 3 weeks off.

    I stopped having tender breast sypmptoms years ago. I never ever noticed a different in size. Sounds annoying!

    My grocery store had no green peppers the other day. There is always some major produce staple thst they just don’t have. Heads of lettuce. I should shop elsewhere and in the summers I often do but the crap store is very convenient and the other store does not have the boneless skinless individually wrapped chicken breasts that I like to stock up on the dinner.

    OMG- stay warm!!!! Burrrr!!!

  6. I’m so sorry about your cauliflower issue;I’m guessing frozen just won’t do it for an addict? We’re fortunate enough to have good produce all year round here…and my dogs are able to get out and exercise too. Yes, on them trying to help you though when you’re on the floor exercising….so silly.
    I’m not sure if I’m in peri-or full blown yet. My Dr. told me last year that I shouldn’t have periods anymore, but she’s a liar becuase I’m having them all the flipping time. Sometimes 2 a month. *sigh* I too get the overblow and tender boobs. It’s not fun, but we will get through it somehow. I found my first gray hair the other day (gray isn’t in my genes, so don’t hate me) but I wouldn’t pull it out, becuase another aspect of menopause for me is thinning hair. I’m praying the gray ones will come in thicker and will help to cover my ‘peek a boo’ scalo.

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