Posts Tagged ‘Hypothyroidism’

Stop the Ride, I Wanna Get Off.

So…

This will be one of those TMI, tell-all posts.

Let me give a couple of you some time to clear the room if that’s not what you’re here for:
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There now,

So, I’m annoyed and confused today.

Purpose of D&C & hysteroscopy – To diagnose and stop irregular bleeding
Result of D&C – 9 days more of irregular bleeding.

Now, I know what you’re thinking:
Be patient, Regina! That’s completely normal!  These things take time… blah, blah, blah.

But let me hip you to something I’ve been keeping silent for a while out of embarrassment, frustration, and a self-destructive need to make sure no one sees the kinks in my armor:

Out of the past 90 days, I have bled in some form or fashion for a total of 67.

SIXTY-F@#%-SEVEN.
I have bled longer than Chad Johnson and Evelyn Lozada were married.
If I bleed another 6 days, I will have also outlasted the nuptials of Kim Kardashian and Chris Humphries.
In the time that I’ve bled, cats, armadillos, bobcats, mice, rabbits,  some dog breeds, and many other animal species have fully gestated.

Are you seeing why I’m pissed?  Just a bit?

I’ve taken Estrogen supplements, Glucophage, Birth Control Pills, Thyroid meds…and yet nothing.

I’ve purchased approximately EIGHT boxes of Always…each with 32  pads included.

See these special Always boxes that come with the free Modeez Sanitary packs?  Yeah, I got FOUR Modeez now.

 

I’m tired of being tough.
I’m tired of being resilient.
I’m tired of acting like I’m not feeling like I’m literally bleeding to death.
I’m tired of nurses saying, “Yes, but are you bleeding through more than one pad in an hour”, in condescending tones.
I’m tired of feeling eeks and squeaks whenever I sneeze, or stand up too fast, or at random times while sitting absolutely still.
I’m tired of EVERY television show, magazine, book, and conversation being about sex and babies….to point out that I can have neither.
I’m tired of looking at my husband and HATING that he deserves better that what I am capable of providing at the moment because I’m depressed, and infertile, and uncomfortable, and hormonal.
I’m tired of feeling like I’m wearing a diaper every day.
I’m tired of being angry.
I’m tired of being sad.
I’m tired of being told to pray.
I’m just tired.
And I felt it necessary to say that today.

Out loud for a change.

Because who am I helping with this website that I’m paying for, if I don’t tell it all?  Especially since that’s what I started the site for.  And how am I even helping ME, if I’m not using this website that I’m paying for, as my venting space. And what more damage will I do to myself if I don’t shout?

I called my doctor today.  Because once again I felt that I’d reached my breaking point.  I was told that this is normal.  This post-op “spotting” as they call it.  And I don’t know, maybe under different circumstances I’d be okay with that answer.  Maybe if I hadn’t already been experiencing it for the past 60+ days then I could not feel so defeated when the nurse once again tells me that “if it isn’t bleeding through one pad in an hour, I can just wait until my follow-up appointment next THURSDAY”.

Next Thursday.

Next Thursday is 5 days, 127 hours, 7628 minutes, 457706 seconds, and another 30 Always pads away.

At this point in my life, next Thursday is practically a year from now.

And I have lots of curse words floating around in my head to punctuate my feelings about that.

I just don’t understand any of this.

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Seems like You’re Ready….

So, when I originally became a member of the embattled, tough girls of infertility lifestyle, I thought the best way to make myself strong, was to completely act un-phased by things that were the cliche discomforts for infertile women.  The textbook cases of teen -pregnancy haters, bitter stepmothers, and weepy weak women who couldn’t bare to lay eyes on children until they had their own.  I was so busy avoiding becoming that woman, that I totally have been blindsided by my newest archnemesis: “Crazy with Anticipation Paranoia Chick”

Seriously, if you haven’t met or become her, consider yourself lucky.

No, BLESSED. (more…)

The Journey

So, to tally…I’ve had
four doctors,
Five changes of thyroid meds
Two ultrasounds
Three misdiagnoses
One cycle of Clomid
Two cycles of Metformin
A husband being diagnosed with diabetes
One referral
25lbs lost
12 lbs regained
Three books read
One blog
800+ fans
and three 1/2 years of this journey.
I wonder how many bouts with infertility have been prolonged because of fear.  Just because things haven’t worked yet, doesn’t mean you should stop trying.  I totally understand that often the discouragement is intense, but you have to keep moving.

I owe a great deal of my peace of mind to my blog,…

This experience has been a sky-dive with a parachute that has a small hole in it. LOL I dip and fall and coast and float and scream, and smile, and yell….but for the amount of women I get to help…I wouldn’t trade it. At all.

But I’ve come a long way.
I still have my small hurdles. Holding other people’s babies, thinking of myself as a mom,etc. But I’m getting better.

The peace of mind that I have is a direct result of understanding the purpose behind all of this. I truly believe that God gave this fight to me so that I would pick it and speak about it.
I am constantly humbled when I’m reminded of the people who have come out of this thing either sucessfully with children, or childless by choice, etc., but still won’t speak about it. The reasons are many, but primarily, nobody wants to be “defined” by their fertility. Nobody wants people feeling sorry for them. A few don’t want their baby to know how hard it was for them to get here. Many are actually ashamed.
I’m just floored that people feel that way, but also grateful to God for finding yet another way to tell me how brave I can be when I need to be. For a while I joked that I was unwillingly becoming the scapegoat for all things black infertility. And I laughed.
Now, I don’t laugh.
I’m proud.
I’m proud that I have this courage.
I’m proud that I have this ability to change a part of the world.
I’m proud that my words could actually bring LIVES into this world for other families.
I’m humbled and extremely grateful for this experience. As weird as that even sounds, it is soo very true.

Recovery

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&gt;.

Do Not Lose Weight to Get Pregnant

Warning: I’m going to use the word HATE, a lot in this post.  I HATE being told what to do.   I hate seeing weight in the top list of things that cause infertility.  I hate that it is something I cannot seem to get a handle on.

I mean, the most aggravating part is the feeling that I JUST got comfortable with me.  I just got to the point, a few years ago, where I don’t cringe at mirrors or slink embarrassingly into Ashley Stewart at the mall.   I have to say I’ve been completely annoyed when doctors have given me the obligatory “you should lose weight if you want to get pregnant“, speech when I usually walk out of their office and find three or four fellow big-girls who just happen to be in their second trimester sitting in the waiting room. That feeling is one I can’t really describe.  It’s like not being picked for the basketball team because you’re too short, and then seeing Mugsy Bogues on the cover of Sports Illustrated.  To put it into words it is “Are you effin kidding me“, personified.

Exhibit A: Hater Baby

While we’re on that subject, I also have to admit a sheer hatred for the fact that a baby which doesn’t exist yet, has the power to control what I eat, drink and do.  Heffa’s that turn up pregnant on “oop’s” mode don’t worry about how many glasses of wine they have, or how certain foods affect their cervical mucous.  In fact, they are probably eating and drinking the very things I’m warned about, when they turn up unexpectedly expecting.  Yet here I am, being frowned at by some invisible Ally McBeal-esque kid who is completely against my affinity towards tasty wine.

Weight loss and I just don’t get along.  We’ve dated a few times, but I found that we were incompatible.  Primarily because PCOS kept messing up our good thing. I would gorge on water and fruit, only to find that my fitness buddies were dropping pounds drastically, while I would shed only one or two.  I would walk faithfully after school or work, only to discover that aside from a few muscle spasms, I was going to be the same chick two months later.  I scarfed down Xenadrine horse pills but all I’d get were jittery nerves. Every three months, without fail, well…actually due to fail, I would give up.  I would throw in my towel symbolically with a trip to the nearest fish-house and celebrate my freedom with catfish nuggets.

At the time, I was unsure what PCOS was, or how it could affect weight.  I had, however,  been warned about my thyroid and how it murdered my BMI. I put myself in thyroid boot camp for a while, and I have to admit, I kicked it into high gear when infertility became an issue.  I figured that logically, if the hypothyroid was the “problem”, then obviously once I started taking the thyroid medication, and doing what I’d always done, the weight would dissipate.  Right. I’m sure you know how that turned out.

The next thought was that if it wasn’t thyroid, it had to be something else.  There had to be a “reason”.  Especially since I don’t eat much, and I was walking and exercising again, right?  So I moved from Xenadrine to Xenical(prescription-strength Alli).  I lost ONE dress size.  ONE.  Do you know how that feels?  I’ll tell you. It doesn’t feel good.

In fact, it feels downright flip a table-worthy.Photobucket

So now, here I am…the largest I’ve ever been, give or take a couple dress sizes.  And while I’m mostly comfortable with me,…I’m sad.  Sad because I don’t have the willpower or to be more honest, the willingness, to put myself through the weight-loss ringer anymore.  Should I lose weight?  Yes?  Do I feel like it? No.  I feel as though I could walk from here to Nebraska and get there ten pounds heavier than I left.  I feel as though the next “reason” for my size will only depress me more than the glass of Kool-Aid I just had, ever could.  And at the end of it all, I have to whine by admitting I still get annoyed at the 400lb chick somewhere pregnant with twins.  And I don’t care who tries to convince me that she is probably having a more difficult pregnancy because of it.  I’m stubborn and shallow like that.

I don’t want to lose weight just to have a baby.  I think that would suck.  And you know what?  I’m right.

Your fertility, while very important, should not be the driving factor for your fitness.  YOU, should be.  Yeah, I slipped that twist in on you, I’m sorry about that. You see, my having children is important to me, but so is NOT developing diabetes, breast cancer or high blood pressure.  I’m not going to make any promises to you, or proclaim that this is my “Resolution moment”, I’ve just realized a few things that I’m going to share.  Get a pen. (Or copy/paste, whatever you wanna do)

Mrs.Tiye’s Things Realized about Healthy living:

  1. Soda/Pop whatever you call it in your neck of the woods…ain’t nothing but water and sugar when your break it down.  Don’t believe me?  Sit your RC cola out for a couple hours and let it get flat.  Take a nice swig.  There, you see?  Now, if you really want to have a hissy fit about water and sugar our problem is bigger than we thought.
  2. Baked food is just as good as fried food, and if you need that crunch, bake it in breadcrumbs.
  3. Just because you hated your grandmother’s steamed okra, doesn’t mean you HAVE to eat it fried now.  Find a way to cook your veggies that YOU like, without killing all their nutrients in Crisco.  Even french fries can be baked you know.
  4. Water actually tastes good.  If you need “flavor”, as my friends and I like to whine about, throw in a slice of fruit or use frozen grapes instead of ice.  It is a thirst-quencher like none-other and citrus is good for you.
  5. If it’s in “walking distance”,…walk to it.  I have driven to the 7Eleven on my corner more times than I care to mention.  Its just embarrassingly lazy when you think about it.
  6. If my body was an apartment building, and I was a baby looking for a place to move into…I would fire my Realtor for showing it to me.
  7. What is the sense in bringing a child into this world who has boundless energy, if you won’t be able to keep up with them?  And when they move out and go to college, you want to be fit enough to keep your party going long after.

Lose weight to get healthy, not pregnant.  You will thank YOU for it later, and so will your future grandchildren.

Sometimes I need my ass whooped.

So, a major part of this thing has got to be staying healthy. I know that. You know that. We all know that right? So WHY, do I have to beat my own ass everyday about forgetting to take my meds?! Its one little pink pill that keeps my thyroid in check and yet I can’t seem to remember it on a daily basis. Let me tell you how bad it gets.

Yesterday, in the waiting room of my Dr’s office, I SUDDENLY thought, “Oh SHIT! What if she checks my blood today? I didn’t take my synthroid” So, my eyes scanned the waiting room and Yipee. there was a water fountain right under the “Parenting” magazines. So I popped a pill and tried my best to snag a good mouthful of water without accidentally dropping the pill into the fountain. I had to look like an idiot, trying to hold my purse, push the fountain with my knee, and then my bracelet slipped off and I was just a weird mess.

Now, all that could have been avoided if I actually thought enough of my damn predicament to faithfully take my medicine in the morning like I’m supposed to. But I guess that would be too much like right, because I am CONSTANTLY Forgetting to take this medication.

Why do we as a people have to be coaxed and cajoled into doing crap that we’re supposed to do for our own good? Stuff like:
“Remember to brush your teeth”
“Drink 8 glasses of water a day!”
“Be Active, Fatty!”
“Hey idiot, eat breakfast every day!”

We have to come up with slogans and commercials to help people do things that will keep them alive. How stupid is that? Infertility aside, at the heart of The Broken Brown Egg, we’re talking about being HEALTHY. Black folk are not very good at taking care of ourselves. I gotta do better. And probably, so do you.