Dear Friends,

For those of you who don’t know, I live and travel full-time in a 5th wheel. It’s a gorgeous tiny home on wheels, but space is definitely limited. The king-sized bed is squeezed in so tightly, it’s nearly impossible to put on a fitted sheet. So, bedside space is at a premium.

This is the corner of my bed. Two days ago, something magical and life-changing made its home there.

Is it Hester Ectomy, my Squishmallow? No, it’s not. She’s been with me since my surgery a month ago. I love her, and she was my trusty companion in the hospital, but she’s not necessarily life-changing. I do think, however, that every 53-year-old woman should have a Squishmallow or two. They’re so soft and squishy (hence, the name), and when your back feels a little wonky at night, you can just shove one under your lumbar region for a little extra support.

Squishmallows don’t care.

The blue pillow against the window is a new addition, too. It was my hold-against-my-belly-when-I-rode-home-from-the-hospital pillow, and it’s been a welcome addition to help support my evening aches and pains. It’s also come in very handy as a middle-of-the-night barrier to everything underneath it.

What’s underneath it, you ask? Well, last night, it was two books (Lyz Lenz’s This American Ex-Wife and Molly Roden Winter’s More), a water bottle, and my phone. Sometimes, I might hide a little snack under there as well, depending on my mood. The pillow ensures I don’t get a hardback book corner in my eye when I roll over.

Last night, however, my water bottle got loose and rolled off the bed with an alarming metal crash, causing mayhem with the dogs and nearly giving me a heart attack. Lesson learned. Next time, I’ll tuck it in sideways.

The CPAP hose you see peeking out is also life-saving, but it’s not new. It’s been my security blanket for a couple of years now. At first, I thought it would suffocate me in my sleep, but now I can’t sleep without it. There’s nothing like warm air blowing up your nose to make you feel safe and secure.

The true lifesaver, my friends, is the little black clip fan you see in the top lefthand corner of the picture. At the low, low price of $19.99, this little wonder has improved my quality of life by at least 238%. If you’re a woman of a certain age, you’ll understand.

The mere thought of a single drop of red wine currently makes my core body temperature rise to about 127 degrees. And if I’m eating spicy food with it? Spontaneous combustion. But the tacos are always worth it. Always. I’ll never understand how my feet can feel like ice cubes while my head and face are as hot as a thousand burning suns, but my body works in mysterious ways.

I mean, I’ve always been sweatier than the average bear, even as a kid. But menopause is a game-changer. I sweat so much I consider it one of my SuperPowers (along with sleeping). Someday, I’ll write The Adventures of Sweaty-Sleepy Woman: Able to Sweat Through Five Blankets and Two Towels in a Single Night! It will be a hit with the kids, I’m sure.

This fan, though. When it’s angled directly on my face, it is a life-giving force. The gentle wind it emits is the soothing flutter of 1,000 tiny hummingbirds bringing me peace and joy and happiness.

This is not an official endorsement. I won’t make any affiliate money from this post. It’s just me, reaching out to my fellow menopau-sisters, to tell you that $19.99 is a small price to pay for sleeping like your 20-year-old self used to sleep.

One caveat: Your very anxious, very vicious pocket pittie might look at that nefarious fan suspiciously—like this—for a few nights, just to make sure it doesn’t have any plans to fall on her head or make startling noises. But if she’s nervous enough, she might sleep at the bottom of the bed instead of wrapping her 149-degree body around your back or your legs, thus kicking off your evening trip through the hottest circles of hell.

It’s definitely a win-win.



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