From Chapter 5
Most of my students had no choice but to recognize me as though I were a different species from the rest of their professors. I was different. Physical features, of course. But unlike my colleagues, I endured irregular monthly cycles that would often trigger hormonal upheavals. Some women may be able to hide a hot-flash while standing in front of a class. Not me. I would suddenly become overheated, my face turning red as I gripped the podium. It might happen two or three times during a class or not at all. I quickly learned to take them in stride and carry on. I had borrowed a toy from my little granddaughter—a hand-held, bright-colored, battery-operated cylinder with a duck on top. Press the button and the duck would rapidly flap its wings. I would have preferred standing in front of an air-conditioner, but the flapping wings actually helped—and it alerted my students to the fact that Mama was having a hot flash.