BY: PATRICIA YODER
As much as we Mennonites like to resist change, we, too, are human and are not immune to biological changes. I first started noticing these changes in my late 40s. After speaking with my pastor, he said I was experiencing what doctors call Menno-pause. My pastor says that there’s even something called male Menno-pause. Well, anyway, after considerable research, I’ve created this handy little guide on what to expect during Menno-pause…for both women and men!
- Hot flashes: These are a real life-saver and a money-saver to boot! For years I used to drive into that lovely spa in Lancaster with my girlfriends to relax in the sauna. Now, this sensation comes naturally. As a Mennonite, I’ll take all the free sauna-treatments I can get. If only I could get free pedicures…
- An end to child-bearing: Praise the Lord! My pastor says that after Menno-pause Jakob and I won’t have to worry about having an 18th child. He says the Lord created Menno-pause so that Mennonite women could stop at 17 children. That seems reasonable to me.
- Increased desire to play Scrabble: Thanks to Menno-pause, Jakob and I no longer have to worry about the kids walking in on us during Scrabble. As I’ve been aging, my desire for Scrabble has dramatically increased. Unfortunately Jakob’s has been waning.
At the same time Jakob has been experiencing what the pastor calls “Male Menno-pause.” Here’s what I’ve noticed.
- Lower levels of sausage consumption: My Jakob used to eat five large sausages a week, but since male Menno-pause, he’s really cut back on the sausage. I still love him, of course, but I prefer Jakob the old way…
- Hymnal dysfunction: Lately, Jakob can’t seem to keep his hymnal upright. Just last Sunday we were singing 606 and the hymnal nearly dropped right out of his hands. I’d never seen anything like that before. I guess from now on we’ll have to hold the hymnal together.
- Reduced plowing stamina: Since he’s hit Menno-pause, Jakob’s been plowing less and less. In the old days he’d plow from dusk till dawn, but now tires out in mid-afternoon. It’s meant a dramatic decrease in productivity around the farm. We might have to hire one of the younger pre-Menno-pausal neighbours to help out around the farm.