Monday, March 13, 2006

one pill could make me larger, one pill might leave me small

...I'm looking for the pill that's gonna tell me when my period will fall. (See what I did there? I made a rhyme! Rhyming is fun.) I'm also looking for the pill that will make me not want to leap off the roof each month. It's time I stopped pretending that my pre-menstrual symptoms are not disrupting my life, that they'll go away with my next cycle, or the one after that, or when the moon's not full, or when the sun comes out, or when American Idol is done for the season. I have a problem. I need to fix it. This will require breaking my rule of No Medication Unless You're Dying or Have Cramps.

I've always felt a bit hypocritical preaching clean living, what with my excessive daily intake of Sucralose, Cool Whip, fat-free 'cheese' and caffeine. But really, I think I make an admirable effort to eat right, exercise much, avoid medicines for pain and sniffles. I even go without glasses every few days to give my eye muscles a chance to flex. Strong body inside and out is what I'm going for. And in keeping with that policy I have repeatedly declined my doctor's offer of oral contraceptives, year after year since my early twenties. I'm not gonna lie to you; my concerns are mostly superficial. Weight gain, inflating breasts (I like mine small)... And it's really not about birth control -- monogamy (and I mean real monogamy, not like "I swear, baby, you're the only girl I'm doing right now") is the only way I'll relocate my Trojans from the bedside table to the junk drawer. (I love how that sentence gives the impression of a thriving sex life. I am quite a woman on this blog! Note to self: check expiration date on condoms.)

After slogging through an especially rough cycle this past month, something just snapped. Or clicked, let's say it clicked, that sounds a little less "men-in-white-coats-came-to-take-me-away." Something clicked and I realized I'm spending about one third of my life swollen and panic-seized in the clutches of (what is more than likely) PMDD. I must admit to myself that this is not just going to go away; that my body is aging, it's less cooperative, less predictable than it used to be, and for more than a week each month it's beating the peace right out of my mind. And it's not fair. I deserve better! There are new pills on the market. I eat well and run because it does my body good. It only makes sense I should take care of my head, and beat the bloat (which only makes me crazier) while I'm at it. I'm seeing my doctor on Wednesday. New policy, effective immediately: Do What You Must To Be Happy All The Time (Or As Often As Humanly Possible). Viva la Revolucion!

15 comments:

I-66 said...

breasts.. condoms.. are you trying to derail the rest of my day here?

Reya Mellicker said...

Have you thought about acupuncture? It's medical voodoo, I know, but it works for things just like this. My colleague is an acupuncturist. Interested?

RoarSavage said...

Good for you for taking control. Just don't get the patch. It leaves a mark. :(

industry whore said...

if you find a pill that decreases bloat, let me know. i'm on yasmin, and my skin is perfect, but for a week out of every month, i walk around with an extra two pounds of water in my tits.

Velvet said...

Huh. See, I have no problem with Yasmin. It's also supposed to have a diuretic quality, so there is no water gain.

I'm cringing thinking about your parents reading about the condom drawer. Ugh.

always write said...

Okay, so maybe it's less a condom drawer than one stray rubber that I forgot to fish out of the bedside basket that holds my reading glasses and the TV remote. Tomato/tomahto.

renee said...

i've been on yasmin for a fewyears and i don't think there was weight gain. its a great pill.

East-West Girl said...

Fabulous idea. Should've come sooner ;)

However, I would recommend finding the pill with the absolute lowest levels of hormones possible. This was something I didn't know to look for when I started on them 5 years ago, and a good 6 months of my life were devoted to therapy because I was severely depressed. Couldn't figure out why til a friend gave me an article. I switched pills, and literally had a 180 turn-around in two weeks! :) Amazing what a little pill can do.

Not to scare... just be informed. But then, you always seem to be anyway. ;)

Washington Cube said...

I thought of myself as a healthy lifestyle person as well. I went to the doctor for what I thought was a minor thing, and that minor thing has snowballed along with the other things they've unearthed while looking at snowballing minor thing..to the point I am seeing a doctor every day this week to try and resolve things or correct them...and I hate doctors and that whole ritual. So it goes. I hope you do what I am doing and force yourself to address the problems and then pursue the necessary action to hopefully make them better. Much mwah and hugs from the sickly Cube.

Kayla said...

I take ortho-tri-lo... No weight gain, no enlarged breasts (unfortunate about the second one). The pill will regulate your periods although, aside from taking a diuretic - you will NOT lose PMS, bloat, etc. These are NORMAL symptoms of PMS.

Unless you are holistic and following a raw food diet.. you aren't leading the "pure, clean" life. Taking care of yourself is what is key - exercising, eating right and regulating your period - if your period destroys you every month.

'Mazing Amy said...

I'm on Cyclessa--no weight gain, no bloat, no swollen boobs, perfect skin, no cramps, etc.

Claire said...

I know someone with a condition that surely sounds like PMDD. She takes stuff for it, but I'm pretty sure she just takes an anti-depressant during those few days each month. (She may also be taking birth control regularly as part of the treatment, but I don't recall.) Anyway, check out all your options, and good luck figuring it out.

Barbara said...

I am with you on hating all forms of medication, but sometimes it is necessary. I will take Synthroid for the rest of my life. I like your new policy. I think you've held out long enough. Happiness counts for a lot.

Shannon said...

Since they don't allow human punching bags in my cell once a month, I have to stick with lots and lots of Advil and be kept away from sharp objects. Everything else makes me either loopy or too tired to work.

I haven't heard of Yasmin before - thanks other commenters, I'm going to check into that.

Anonymous said...

Yasmin is absolutely great. No dizziness, no sense of missing the pill after not taking it.

I had a horrible menstrual cycle, i.e. two in a month, two months without, one month absolutely horrible... I think that you get the picture.

After taking another pill which didn't work I was prescribed this one. Needless to say, I have a better life :)


This is my first post ever in any blog. Just thought it was important and that I could be of help.

Love your blog. Keep up the good work! :)