Diet, Hormones, life, PCOS, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, womans health

PCOS…Oh what a mess!

Hey guys! Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas filled with friends, family, and love! I kind of wanted to get started on this with sort of an introduction before the New Year starts, as I’ll be making a lot of changes to my lifestyle and I want to give you guys some insight as to why.

About a year and a half ago I was diagnosed with PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome), although I was only diagnosed a short time ago, I have actually been experiencing symptoms for about 7 years or so. Since I was in high school I have always had super irregular cycles, I would go months and months without one, and then when I would get a period it would sometimes last 6-8 weeks. For a while I just put it off as being young but when I was a junior in high school I finally brought it up to my general physician, who ordered some hormone testing and referred me to an OBGYN, my results came back as slightly abnormal (all that was mentioned was that my estrogen was a bit low) but nothing that seemed to generate concern, so they basically threw birth control at me and sent me on my way. Being young I really trusted my doctor so I took the birth control and it was like magic, my cycles regulated, my skin was clear, life was good. I continued with the birth control for about a year and a half, but as I got older (and wiser!) I really started to realized that hormonal birth control wasn’t all that healthy for my body, especially since I was so young. I was worried about how long I would have to be on the pill (13+ years until I wanted children!), and the toll that would take on my body. So since there was no reason for me to be on birth control besides controlling my cycle I decided to go off of the pill completely, I wasn’t sure what would happen with my periods, if they would stay regular or if they would go back to being crazy. After a few months of being off the pill my cycles returned to being unpredictable, but I just dealt with it, I never saw another doctor about it because honestly I just felt like they would just throw the pill at me again and I didn’t want that.

Throughout the years after I stopped the birth control, but before my official diagnoses I did experience other symptoms that I now know are related to the PCOS. I have never been a thin girl, I have always had a curvy, fuller build, that is just my body type, but towards the end of high school and into college I really started to gain weight around my mid section. I never understood my weight issues, I definitely didn’t have the best diet but it wasn’t horrible, yet I continued to just gain weight. I also had uneven acne prone skin, and excess…errr…hair, in places that girls do not want hair (honestly this is the worst part of everything for me! Awful!).

Fast forward to summer 2013, here is where I am going to just have to just be really open and honest with you guys. My long time boyfriend and I had sort of an “oops” in the form of birth control we were using (condoms), so I decided just to be safe I would take the Plan B pill. At first I had no adverse side effects from the Plan B pill, but a little over a week after I had a major bleed. At first I thought it was just a heavy “period” but I quickly realized there was something bigger going on. I was bleeding completely (and I do mean completely) through and ultra tampon (Um before this experience I didn’t even know they made such a thing!) in less than 30 minutes. It was the scariest thing I had ever experienced, it made me physically ill, I had the worst abdominal pain, I was shaky and exhausted, after two days of being bed ridden from the amount of bleeding I was experiencing I ended up with an emergency appointment at an OBGYN. At first glance my doctor thought I might be having a miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy, so they immediately did a pregnancy test and an internal ultrasound. After ruling out any sort of pregnancy, they got a better look at my ovaries and discovered a bunch of small cysts around my follicles. They said that the sudden and severe bleeding I was having wasn’t directly related to the Plan B, but most likely a result of my already crazy hormone levels. From there they did some hormone testing where I presented with classic symptoms of PCOS, they also tested my blood sugar levels which weren’t bad but also not the best, and they diagnosed me with hypothyroidism, my blood pressure was also high, which they attributed to the PCOS and possibly some other metabolic issues and I was advised to see an endocrinologist. In the end, my doctor couldn’t really offer me any solutions, and I did not want to go back on the pill, as she explained all that does is mask the symptoms of PCOS. My doctor also told me that I would most likely not be able to conceive naturally, and that when I was at a point in my life where I wanted to get pregnant that I would have to see an infertility specialist. I left feeling so alone, and so defeated. I was (and lets face it, still am) an emotional mess. Not only was I told that I had a hormonal condition that there was basically no treatment or cure for, but I was also told that I wouldn’t be able to conceive on my own. In the weeks following my diagnosis I did do some research on PCOS, I read a lot about how people have had successes with different lifestyle changes such as diet, low carb, paleo, raw foods, and so on but I just wasn’t in the right frame of mind to go down that road yet.

Now here we are a year and a half later, and I have dabbled in some changes but I nothing has really stuck. I have big plans for 2015. I want to be healthy, I want to eventually be able to have children with hopefully minimal or no help from an infertility specialist. I want to share my journey with you guys, because I know there are so many women who are struggling with PCOS, and getting that diagnosis just kind of knocks the wind out of you. You don’t know where to go from that point. I hope that you guys will follow my on my journey to health and happiness. I want to have fun, be honest, and makes changes.

Although this blog will not be wholly about PCOS, I really feel like it is a huge part of who I am and how I live my life so I want to share that with you, and hopefully I can reach out to some others who are going through the same things I am.

2015 is going to be a great year, and I am so excited to share it with you guys!