I had the pleasure of speaking with Dr. Claudia Levine and Certified Family Nurse Practitioner, Kate Maclaughlin about their new venture to educate women about all the aspects and challenges of peri menopause, menopause and post menopause. They were inspired to create a series of workshops for women going through these phases because it was so sorely lacking. They donned another hat as educators to fill in a gap and to satisfy a need for comprehensive education in an area that is often overlooked. I wished that their program had been available to me when I started going through menopause.
In speaking with them, a memory of my mother preparing me for getting my first period came back. She gave me a little case with sanitary pads and a change of underwear. She explained everything so that I would not be scared when I got my first period. I hear many stories of young girls being frightened when they first saw blood because no one had explained anything to them. And so it is not surprising that when our periods stop, there is no one to explain…
And that is where Claudia and Kate come in. They designed a two hour Roadmap Workshop which addresses such areas as:
- Understand the timing and physiology of moving towards and settling into a new hormonal balance.
- Identify where you are on the roadmap.
- Explore the interplay between hormonal & age-related changes.
- Reflect on the unique aspects of this time in your life.
- Learn how to effectively track symptoms.
- Create a personalized Action Plan to manage symptoms and optimize health.
Presently, their workshops are remote with a minimum of five women and maximum of eight. They keep the groups small in order to help build connection and a sense of community amongst their participants. Another passion of Claudia and Kate’s is providing medical attention and education to women that are medically under served. With that vision and mission, they give up to 75% off the price of each workshop, which is reasonably priced between $75-$125.
Outside of their Roadmap Workshop are what they refer to as Deep Dive Workshops which enable them to focus in a very concentrated way on an element of this phase of a woman’s life. For example,
“IS HORMONE THERAPY RIGHT FOR YOU?” For one and half hours you can learn about the option of hormone therapy from when and why to consider it, when hormone replacement therapy is not recommended, how effective is it at managing symptoms, potential risks, most common side effects and types, doses and delivery mechanisms available.
Future Deep Dive Workshops are in the works with such interesting and varied topics as “Hot Flashes & Irregular Bleeding”, “Mood, Sleep & Cognition”, “Vulvovaginal, Urinary & Sexual Health”, “Our Changing Bodies – Weight, Skin & Hair”, “How a Partner can be Supportive during this Transition.”
They also have a Monthly Newsletter and encourage women who have taken the workshop to stay in touch. They refer to them aptly as the “Menoposse.” I asked them about the name of their company as Menopause Jewel Box. The symbolism to two fold – one is the metaphor of jewel box as a symbol of a woman’s vulva and the second is the analogy of sharing gems (of knowledge) from the jewel box.
I was moved and inspired by Claudia and Kate because of their commitment to helping all women and how with their impressive medical backgrounds they are helping us be well prepared for a life changing phase that we will all go through.
To find out more: