10/17/2012 12:11 EDT | Updated 12/10/2012 05:12 EST

How to Feel Sexy Through Menopause

October 18 is World Menopause Day. Interesting, a day for menopause. As we women of the baby-boomer generation have reached and continue to reach this huge juncture in our lives, the subject of menopause and peri-menopause has reached epic proportions. At this very moment 50 million women are going through peri-menopause and menopause.

For me it went like this: I literally woke up one morning and did not recognize the image looking back at me in the mirror. I had put on weight around my middle, my thighs and my back, and when I stood on the scale I realized that I had gained 35 pounds, I guarantee this did not happen overnight, I had not been paying attention.

At first I felt sad, then I felt angry, and then I felt empowered to make changes. I encourage you to embark on this wonderful journey with a sense of how you can change your mind, change your body, and change your life. Which is what I did and it made all the difference in the world. You can embrace the feeling of empowerment, instead of the feeling of desperation and look back at yourself in the mirror with a renewed sense of vibrancy and youthfulness. Take it from me, IT CAN BE DONE.

Peri-menopause and menopause is a time in a woman's' life when she can at last discover the deeper meaning of who she is and her relationship to the world...finding her true passion. It is a time to "let go" and realize the benefits of all that has been learned and done in your life and welcome the new. This can also be a time of spiritual growth and a process of rebirth from which a woman can emerge with a new sense of confidence.

However, through the evolution of society and time, women have lost the image of being beautiful and feeling beautiful during this time in their life. They have a tendency to feel invisible and to allow their emotions to take on a life of their own and then they become afraid to face what is going on. They start to put on weight. They seem to have no control over their appetite and their bodies. They may also experience some short term memory loss and difficulties in their relationships. I can certainly relate.

When I realized that I was in peri-menopause at the age of 45, at first things appeared to be very dark and I felt as though I was losing touch with myself. At this point I realized that meditation and exercise were great motivators for me to take control of my cravings, they went hand in hand.

The more I meditated 20 minutes daily, the more I exercised doing weight-bearing exercise and cardio for one hour per day, the more I was conscious of what I was eating and the more control I had over my weight gain. I learned what type of meditation to do not only for weight gain but also for those irritating hot flashes. Things really started to improve and I began to feel better.

I am going to be 65 at my next birthday and I feel that I have "cracked the code." Menopause has been a passionate journey for me and at this point in my life I am very enthusiastic about sharing my experiences and knowledge with other women. I encourage you to embrace where you are and know that you have the ability and that the tools are out there to help you move forward into a place of confidence, beauty and a regained feeling of being "sexy."