Here's my ticker!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I'm hormonal

At least, I think that's what's been going on with me.


Detailed and very descriptive narration about the female menstrual cycle upcoming... Skip this post if you're nauseaous.

So anyway. I hadn't blogged about this, but I've been having some serious menstrual cycle issues. It all started back in November.

I'm usually a very regular-cycle person, ranging from 28-30 days. Usually my period was always on the 3rd-4th of each month, give or take a day. In November, I attended the wedding of a dear friend and co-worker of mine that fell on the 3rd. I was prepared, of course, and sure enough, that night (at the party, no less) I felt the tug that signaled my period.

I was very surprised a few hours later to find that the tampon was NOT soaked through, since I'm usually a heavy bleeder. I shrugged it off and was actually kind of glad since I was wearing a white patterned dress, and certainly did not feel up for an "accident".

The next day was pretty much the same, and I think I spotted for about a week before I actually had my period, the usual 5-day event. Afterwards though, I spotted for about another week.

December came, and with it, on the 5th, came spotting and light bleeding off/on. This lasted until around the 23rd, when my period FINALLY came. It lasted it's 5 day run, and then stopped. No spotting.

January came around, and my period started on the 3rd, so I figured, Hey, it's back to normal!

Guess again.

After about 10 days on a heavy period, I decided to finally drag my ass to the gynecologist. He gave me an ultrasound and there were no cysts or tumors, so I was afraid I was having clotting issues. I've known for a while I have a certain problem where if I don't consume vitamin K pills on a somewhat regular basis, I will not clot right, my clotting time will be looooong. However, he said I was probably having hormonal issues and prescribed hormone therapy. Just to be on the safe side, he also added vitamin K and a clotting agent.

I took the pills and my period DID become lighter, however, it did not cease. I went to the doctor again, with some lab results which he said meant I did not have endometrial cancer (relief!) but was baffled as to why I wouldn't stop bleeding. He said if it didn't stop soon, he'd have to do a D & C (dilation and curettage) to remove the endometrium (the lining of the uterus) just in case THAT was the cause of it, but he'd have to get blood work first just in case I was still having clotting issues, because if I was, a D & C could kill me.

I freaked. Simple as that. Plus, I was doing all of this consultation outside of my insurance and couldn't afford any more tests, medicine or procedures. Health care here in Mexico is sort of complicated. We have a mandatory certain amount based on how much we earn taken each month and destined for health and social security. In return, we get free doctor's visits, free medicine, free lab tests, hospitalization, whatever, you name it, we got it. However, since every single working person in Mexico has this, it also means they're swamped. When I went to my general practitioner (1st step in the governmental health system) to see what they could do in regards to my problem, he told me he'd set up an appointment with the specialist (gynecologist) so he could check me out. Earliest appointment he could get was a little over a month afterwards.

Figuring I'd have bled out by then, I went to the private sector. Boy, was it expensive. Considering that minimum wage here is 15o USD a MONTH!!!, I spent over a month's worth of minimum wage between consult, lab and medicine, all of this despite the fact that the doctor only charged 20 USD for the visit (and only once). It was all of my saving's worth. I was broke. I couldn't afford anything else.

To top it all off, it was end of the month at my work, and I had results to turn in. My numbers hadn't been that great (since I hadn't been feeling well) and I needed to make up for backed-up work. I decided to postpone the visit to the government doctor until the 1st of february.

Magically, around the 22nd I stopped bleeding. It was heaven. I was glad. All was right with the world again. I researched, and since my pills were for 21 days, with a 7 day window before the next box, I should get my period around 10 days after, which was around 5 days after I stopped taking the pills.

I was right on target. I also stopped bleeding about 5 days after I started taking the pills, which was a total relief.

So, period back to normal for now.

What the heck is my problem then?

My temper. Ever since November my temper has been all over the place. I'm usually a very patient, calm and rational human being, but these few months I have become the unexpected rage monster. I will get majorly pissed at the drop of a hat. No notice. No real reason.

I don't know what's come over me lately, but I don't like it.

Has anyone experienced anything like this before? Will it go away after taking the pills for a few more months? I was told by my doctor that I should take them for 6-12 months, and I HAVE noticed a slight improvement on my temper, and I'm feeling a bit better, but I'm afraid that it won't go totally back to normal, and even more afraid of what will happen once I stop taking them.

Anyone have a clue?


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