I began that same journey for real about 4 years ago. Have you read Christiane Northrup's The Wisdom of Menopause? You might enjoy it. There's a lot of mid-life philosophizing about all kinds of things. I confess I didn't finish it, but it's a good book to pick up and read sporadically.
GL to you on this journey. FYI, I used to take 2 large, frozen gel packs to bed with me to get through those hot flashes, but it drove dh out of bed. Finally when I was getting ready to spend a week in a professional workshop out of town, I caved in and began hrt, and it worked really well.
Keiki's Makuahine (Keiki's Mom) 51, dh 52
Keiki: b. 2002 after 3 months bedrest
Natural conception following ZIFT/chem. pg
Olivia: b. 1999 d. 1999
28-week preemie, ptl cause unknown
Natural conception after 1 mc
ttc since 1998