I remember every detail about the day I got my first period. I can even smell the slight mold of our suburban, ranch basement bathroom. But what I most remember is my mother.

“Congratulations. You are now a woman.”

My mother has never been prouder of me than this particular day.


I was a woman.

Along with Kotex pads that required a belt—yes, I am that old—I was now applauded for a simple biological act…

My body functioned as it should…

How proud we should be over that! Cue the confetti. Let’s party. Woo-hoo. Yay, biology.

But along this same path, my body functioning normally, what do you say to a woman who no longer gets her period?

I’m waiting…

If when you get your period you become a woman, what do you become when it stops?

Are you no longer a woman?

Technically speaking, the opposite of “woman” is “man.” But if you search hard enough at synonym.com, you get a plethora of interesting opposites: emotional person, immature, unsexy, unattractiveness, ugly.


You stopped getting your period. Your body functioned normally.

You are not worth recognizing. You are no longer attractive nor vital. You are no longer worthy of a name. Boo, biology.

Is this how we should treat ourselves? How we should let others think of us?

Why don’t we think of menopause as a reboot? Our body got an update. We restarted it. And now, we are better than ever. We are Woman 5.0.


Why don’t we think of menopause as a reboot? Our body got an update. We restarted it. And now, we are better than ever. We are Women 5.0.

Just to remind you—let’s look at the history of our software:

  • 1.0: pimples, self-doubt, SATs
  • 2.0: career chutes and ladders
  • 3.0: wedding chapel, divorce court, or singledom
  • 4.0: parent-self-children … who comes first?

Were any of these stages of womanhood all that awesome? Maybe our upper arms didn’t jiggle, but how great were the menstruation years anyway?

What does Woman 5.0 have to offer?

  • confidence
  • innate sexuality
  • resilience
  • attitude

Maybe we should put on a black turtleneck, stand on a stage in Silicon Valley, and shout to the world: All Hail Women 5.0!

LA is a New York-based armchair philosopher, armchair therapist, and armchair quarterback. She excels at asking questions and telling people that they should think outside of the box. Her proudest accomplishment is that she refrained from locking any family members in a closet during the pandemic. Feed her ego and catch her at Waking up on the Wrong Side of 50.

Write for Navigating the Change.