I am sorry I’ve been MIA here this summer. It started out with a bang and I’ve been tired by most evenings I wanted to blog but happy and my heart is full of wonderful memories with my family. This post is going to be about my struggles with my period so if the words “uterus” or “blood” scare you – I’d advise you to a) grow up (ha!) and b) find another site to keep you occupied.
I decided to share my experience because it was hard to find friends who had gone through this. Even the older ladies in my water aerobics class had no advice to share with me!
I have had horrible periods my whole life. They are heavy, long, and painful. I’ve never skipped school, sports, or work because of this, but I’ve had my moments where I have had to close my eyes and focus on something happy. After having kids, I can liken the pain to contractions!
In early June, I talked to OB-GYN about my options. The pill sends my hormones into a tizzy and caused lumps on my breasts the last time I took it. Since I was pretty sure I was done having children, we discussed surgery options. I would first have an ablation and if that didn’t work, I’d have a partial hysterectomy. James and I had discussed these options prior to my appointment so none of these options were a huge surprise to me.
And I’m sorry, but this brochure had me cracking up when I received it. I cannot relate to her at all. I know I’m not the average age for this surgery, which is one of the reasons I’m sharing my story here. I want other young ladies to know all options and see what’s right for them.
I had blood work and a pap-smear to rule out cancer. Phew! Also had a 25 minute vaginal ultrasound to get the full picture of what was going on down there. And side note – buy a girl a drink before such a long ultrasound! My OB-GYN told my that she saw 3 things that were causing my bad periods. First, thick lining which would be taken care of with a D & C. She also spotted fibroids and polyps which could be taken care of by having an endometrial ablation. I was also told that these three things can make it difficult for women trying to get pregnant. Knowing that info made me hug my babies extra tight when I came home.
A week or two after my appointments, I was at my favorite blogging conference – ALT – in Salt Lake City. On the last evening, right as the garden party kicked off, a friend tapped my shoulder to let me know I had a spot on my skirt. Color me embarrassed as this has never happened to me! My friend Troy took this pic about a moment before the drama unfolded! Notice the light color of my skirt!!
I hurried upstairs to change and quickly shower. When I was in the shower, I noticed that I was bleeding like never before which explains why a super tampon and giant pad did no good after 45 minutes. This did scare me though and then my lining came out. Three times. Since I couldn’t stop this, I knew I needed to go to the ER. I called my friend Jess who was still enjoying herself at the party and asked if she’d come hang out with me at the ER for a bit. I am very thankful that she came with me as it took several hours to get everything sorted.
The doctors first came in and held my hands and told me that they thought I was having a miscarriage. I told them not possible – I’d just had a super long ultrasound. They wanted a pregnancy test first which was fine by me, but it took them an hour to come back and let me know that I indeed was not pregnant. An hour of thinking that you maaaay be having a miscarriage was not fun. I was finally given a hormone and told that the bleeding would stop soon.
I got back to my hotel room to sleep for a few hours and then hop on a plane back to SF, nap, cook dinner, and go back to sleep. I woke up at 6 the next morning, packed for camp for a week for myself, Alice, and Patrick and we were on our way to the woods! The hormone I took to stop the bleeding took that entire week to work. I still had to go to the bathroom almost every hour for the first 4 days. This was difficult to do with two small kids but luckily my Dad and good friend Rebecca were nearby to grab the kiddos while I ran up to the head!
Surgery was scheduled for my next period and I was in and out in a few hours. I ended up having a bad reaction to the anesthesia and was violently throwing up the first day and in total pain. Like the “nobody talk to me and I’m going to see if laying on the bed upside down helps” kinda pain. James was a rockstar and called the doc to get some meds to control everything. One pill for nausea and for pain was all I needed. Recovery has been good otherwise – just feeling uncomfortable and still bleeding til things are normal again. I’m very hopeful for less pain every month and I’ll keep you posted if I have undergo anything more dramatic.
My hope with this post is to inform others of options. It was tough to find others out there who have had surgery in their early 30’s. I’m excited to feel a bit more normal and not like I need to go to Costco every month for supplies.