in Guest Posts, PCOS

Recovery

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I’m recovering.

I had surgery 4 days ago and it is coming along nicely. Well, what I think is nicely anyways. I decided that I would blog during my recovery because I have a ton of free time, and well now I actually have something to share. On the regular, I’m not just going to be typing away, boring you guys to tears with my regular…life. Nothing major goes on here, I’m just a regular infertile girl.  I am still at the same fertility clinic along with the same fertility doctor. But really, no major news. However, I did want to share with you guys about what I call my “maintenance drugs”, Metformin and Synthroid.

I call them maintenance drugs because they maintain my systems. I guess in a way they do make me more fertile, because they increase the functionality of my systems, but they don’t necessarily work on my reproductive system.  As I’ve been studying them, I have to say that I find it neat how blood sugar affects reproduction.

I haven’t had much to say lately, because I figured I would spare ya’ll most of  the boring details on the side effects and such.  Now that I have been taking these meds for a couple months, I think I have finally gotten used to them. In fact, I almost enjoy them. In my non-medical opinion I think increased functionality is great. The Synthroid is for a low thyroid which I never noticed that I had.  Below is a description from the US National Libary of Medicine:

Why is this medication prescribed?

Levothyroxine, a thyroid hormone, is used to treat hypothyroidism, a condition where the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone. Without this hormone, the body cannot function properly, resulting in: poor growth; slow speech; lack of energy; weight gain; hair loss; dry, thick skin; and increased sensitivity to cold. When taken correctly, levothyroxine reverses these symptoms. Levothyroxine is also used to treat congenital hypothyroidism (cretinism) and goiter (enlarged thyroid gland).

If you had asked me three months ago had I have ever experienced any of these symptoms, I would have told you no… never noticed them. I thought those feelings were normal, and simply part of life in 2010. This is not the case. I definatly had those symptoms and more. I could have bitten your head off, but I’d been making attempts to exercise extreme control.  I chalked it up to genetics mostly, and anything else was just the throws of life.

I used to experience a world-wind of emotions daily, during which I would again, excerise extreme control. I guess you could say,I’m something of a ‘zen master’, (just kiddin LOL).  Being in the cypher with these drugs now, makes me a little sad that people go through feelings like this and never know that they don’t have to.  Never thinking to blame their thyroid.  Truly, knowledge is power.

A short time after I started on the Synthroid I started to feel more clear and even tempered and began to lose weight right away. Not only was I losing weight, but I was feeling less like I needed to depend on food period. I felt less hungry overall and amazingly like I could enjoy food more. (Ever had that “I’m tired of eating” feeling?)  Which kinda troubles me even more, now as I wonder if we shove food in our mouths to deal with poor bodily functions subconciously? Are people suffering an overweight existence, filled with inactivity due to an over/underactive thyroid?   Have I been inactive for most of my life because of said low thyroid? Obviously the weight loss is a plus, but overall my mood was in fact lifted, I even begin to thrive in my karate class.  Think about it, surely if you could enhance your ablilty to look over the “rim” of whatever “you ‘think’ may be holding you back”, and be physically  lighter while doing so… well, wouldn’t you then just go on ahead and climb over the top, of  ‘that thing’  holding you back? Possibly, defeating said ‘depressing feelings’ you never knew you had, never needing the help of anti-depressants, illegal drugs, and other mood stimulations and alterers?  Deep, but that is exactly how taking Synthroid (levothyroxine) makes me feel.

My previous experiences of speaking up to my health care providers about my infertility had landed me in the ring with Estrogen and anti-depressants. Which to me, is a bit much, not to mention the fact that in my case, the drugs won. I couldn’t tell whether I was coming or going and I didn’t really feel like I was getting better. I just felt medicated and trapped. I was curious to know if I would be on these mood simulators for the rest of my life, attempting to get pregnant for what I hoped would only be a short time.  Personally, I don’t think anti-depressants are appropriate for me.  I don’t consider myself a depressed person.  Don’t get me wrong, I do believe in some cases that they are necessary, but I also believe they are over-prescribed.  So present day,  I reluctantly began the fertility process again, because  I just couldn’t wrap my mind around needing Zoloft because of an hormone deficency.  For that to make sense, at least the way this doctor was making me feel, it would mean that even if I possessed all the estrogen of a normal woman my age… I would be ‘depressed’ and in need of anti-depressants.  To me, that didn’t make much sense.

The difference between then and now is not only does this Synthroid sound like it makes sense , but it feels like it too. I feel like I have had a little boost.  Like I imagine it feels like this to drink supplements everyday. The Metformin is completely different. Let’s be honest, the restroom related side-effects totally suck. But, again…it’s all about the functionality. My initial readings about PCOS appear, in this case, to be correct. I was insulin resistant. So, before I even started at this fertility clinic I altered my diet to mostly vegetraian.  Bottom line from what I can tell, the veggies are much easier for your body to digest and handle. The veggies don’t produce as much glucose and in turn are much easier on the kidney’s.  As I have said before, I am not a doctor. I most likely cannot explain what I read, they way my brain broke it down to help all my readers understand. First of all I gained all my knowledge on the subject from two books: Skinny Bitch by Rory Fieldman and Kim Barnouin and also” The Complete Idiots Guide to Glycemic Index Weight Loss“.  From what I can tell tell, glucose +insulin resistance =fat. Later we will research and explore more options and perhaps collect a bit more information about the subject. But when my doctor prescribed me Metformin, it began to regulate said glucose and I immediately noticed the changes. Besides the obvious weight loss, I also feel less sluggish and bloated.

Because I don’t know all the ins and outs of these drugs, I figured I would leave that talk to the experts, give ya’ll a break from my mouth, and catch ya’ll up while I lay here and recover. This is not my first battle with the knife. I have had two bikini-cut cystectomies and a laproscopic apendextomy. Now there’s something that will depress you; The thought that the only bikini you’ll wear through your 20’s is the cut from surgery. Your young body ruined, in this culture?!? Let me be the first one to tell you how well that goes along with these shallow people this day in age. Fortunately, I have a firm foundation in Jesus Christ and a healthy body image as well.  In addition to that, I have had relationships with nurturing indivsuals who understood the huge seperation in my abdomen and the flap of skin that goes with it, but had I had low self esteem or aspirations of modeling I would need that Zoloft.  My point is that I am glad to be on these ‘maintenance drugs’ that have made me feel better than Lexapro ever could.

But back to present day, I had the surgery, and to be honest with you, I have no idea what he even did. I know he removed a polyp but he said if there was any other issues to address he would handle them while he was in there. Of course my momma told me what he said but I was super druggy so… I have no idea what he said. I know there was some ‘clean-up’ involved and some removing of scar tissue  from previous surgeries but I guess that could be classified as ‘clean-up’. It may be too early to tell but, I think this surgery went pretty good. This isn’t the worst pain I’ve ever felt. At least I didn’t get cut in half  again, right?

Books and Articles Referenced in this post:

Beale, Lucy, and Joan Clark-Warner. The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Glycemic Index Weight Loss. New York, NY: Alpha, 2010. Print.

Freedman, Rory, and Kim Barnouin. Skinny Bitch: a No-nonsense, Tough-love Guide for Savvy Girls Who Want to Stop Eating Crap and Start Looking Fabulous! Philadelphia: Running, 2005. Print.

“PubMed Health – Levothyroxine.” Web. 16 Oct. 2010. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0000684>.

BrokenBrownBelle

Broken Brown Belle, guest author of The Egg, is a spicy southern belle currently living in Shreveport, LA., that started her fertility journey about 2 years ago. Through money, marriage, men, babies, health, spirituality, culture, socio-economic status, friends, co-workers, and life ahead of her, she is taking it one step at a time. “Belle” invites her readers to join her exploration, as she seeks answers about the infertility plaguing her eight year marriage.

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