Hot flashes do suck. Esp for my husband who sleeps in a polar icecap of a bedroom in full under armor. But I am thankful in that after deciding to stop the hormone replacement therapy (my mil developed a HUGE clot in her abdominal aorta that nearly killed her) I have them less and less. It helps to control intake of caffeine and sugar and eat healthier and losing nearly 50 lb sure has been a boon to the overcoming of those nasty flashes. I have maybe one or two a day, they last about 30 seconds, I feel like I might pass out a minute and they pass. Used to be dozens a day. I would say I am winning the war on hot flashes.
I think a good diet, exercise, reasonable (or non) consumption of caffeine and alcohol sure do help. That and time. With time, all things pass. Including hot flashes. My grandmother sailed through the "change" with none at all. But she was Austrian and kept a pretty healthy diet and mental attitude about it all. she knew like all things, it would pass. I am trying to pattern myself after her and it's slowly working.
Not having periods is great. When that magical year passes, I plan to burn all the tampons, pads and other paraphernalia in my back yard. Seriously. I feel joy that I don't have to buy those things in bulk by the month any longer.
I feel for my daughter, who suffers cramps and oft-heavy bleeding. She just got an IUD and I think already it's helping. But I don't envy the next 30-40 years for her as she goes through this monthly "spiritual" rite of passage. A whole lot of bleeding, migraines, cramps, bloating, digestive upsets, mood swings, lack of predictability and mess just to have a baby or two over the years seems more of a burden and high price to pay than anything approaching a joyful spiritual happening to me.
But thankfully, that's about over for me and I could not be more excited.