Black women are negotiating the different stages of menopause along with their ever evolving identifies, relationships, careers, responsibilities and societal tropes. This is a curated intergenerational exchange, a space for exploration, mentorship, intimacy and vulnerability around life, identity a… read more
“We are often ‘too busy’ to find time for solitude. And yet it is in the stillness that we also learn how to be with ourselves in a spirit of acceptance and peace. Then when we re-enter community, we are able to extend this acceptance to others. Without knowing how to be alone, we cannot know how to be with others and sustain the necessary autonomy.” --bell hooks
What year this has been. It's feels glib to say that it's been hard, but it has been and it's been hugely transformative for us all. I have been personally struck by how deeply this year has held a mirror up to our relationships. The nature of our connections to each other, the ties that bind us, the opportunities for healing, and the ways that love shows up, old familiar love as well new surprising love. It's also been a time of isolation that has led to deep introspection around my own evolving identity, relationships, healing as well as my connection to other Black people navigating aging and menopause. This introspection sometimes felt like sitting at the bottom of the ocean with different version of myself, excavating treasures, reclaiming lost souls and committing to further healing and love. Other times I've felt like Alice in the looking glass falling into a rabbit hole of curiosity that led me to more questions -- more connections. This curiosity led me many places, one of them wanting to explore how Black women and femmes who don't live in the US are experiencing this portal we call menopause.
In this last episode of Season 2 of The Black Girl's Guide to Surviving Menopause, I had the great pleasure to interview Karen Arthur who lives in the UK and Monika Odum who lives in Germany. Karen is an ex teacher now Fashion Creative, private sewing tutor, stylist and speaker who has been sewing for over 40 years. In the past few years she has focused on creating beautiful clothing for women who appreciate hand crafted care and slow fashion. She has just started a new podcast “Menopause whilst Black” that centers the experiences of Black women in the UK in a bid to diversify this topic. Monika Odum is 50 years old with her roots growing from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Germany where she was born, raised and lives. She has a 33yrs plus work life as a nurse in a variety of backgrounds, mostly on the ICU and is currently teaching at a nursing school. She is a firm believer in ancestor wisdom and writes because she loves it. She dares to be average, as she thinks of the black superwoman stereotype as a form of oppression. She is also a guest/contributing writer for Rosa Mag.
A quick word of thanks....
I want to take a moment to thank all our listeners! So many of you, no matter your age, have listened to the podcast, shared the podcast and supported the podcast. We have grown in our listenership by over 200% in over 19 countries in 2020! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I also want to thank my producer Mariah M. for hanging in there with me as we figured out how to continue interviewing people while quarantining and navigating one of the most dynamic and challenging years of our lives. Thank you Mariah.... you are magic! We are going quiet for the rest of year and commit to bringing more stories, more voices, more laughter, more healing and more truths related to this menopause aging journey. Until then, be well and be safe.
To learn more about Karen Arthur and Menopause Whilst Black, Follow her on IG at @menopausewhilstblack
To learn more about Rosa Mag, check out Rosa Mag https://rosa-mag.de/
To take advantage of the discount form this episode's sponsor, KINDRA, click ourkindra.com/omi20
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