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How pickleball restored my faith in humanity (and saved me in the process) | Shanti Nelson

The pickleball floodgates opened fast and they opened wide – I found a community, a sense of purpose and belonging

Two months in and I’m addicted, riding the pickleball wave and hooked on the feeling.

At 54, I’m generally a self-proclaimed “hot mess” thanks to menopause – AKA my surly sidekick who snuck up out of nowhere, hit me like a runaway train, and left me creaky and cranky but too tired to shoot up a flare. Truth be told, I hit a wall and I wasn’t embracing “the change” with open arms (more like tightly coiled fists). Mood swings, hot flashes and weight gain (why the hell is it all in my midsection?) – all the usual suspects. Not to mention that it’s nearly impossible to meet new people these days (especially single and in my 50s) when we work remotely, shop online and drink at home. And don’t get me started with online dating.

Shanti L Nelson is a writer and photographer

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