it's that time of the month again :) femme writes has become a reoccuring phenomenon thanks to shine and marie. this month's topic is reproductive rights and issues
i may not always be besties with my uterus, but i try to treat it right. i go for my annual exams. i don't insert dangerous foreign objects. i try not to take it for granted. unfortunately, i've had this nagging feeling that my uterus will not be able to live up to my expectations. it's no secret that i have baby fever. everyone's pregnant it seems: friends, coworkers and bloggers. for some it was easy, for others it was a long and scary road. and i'm terrified i am destined to be one of the latter...
so according to the internets, any number of things can go wrong with the reproductive bits: fibroids, endometriosis, endometrial hyperplasia, ovarian cysts, pelvic inflammatory disease, severe menstrual pain, chronic pelvic pain, premature ovarian failure, polycystic ovary syndrome (google at your own risk. some of these can be quite unsettling)... all of which make me feel super awesome on a regular basis :p my previous ob/gyn (dr. G) was close to diagnosing me with endometriosis because i was having crazy horrible cramps during my period. well i've pretty much proven that shit wrong. went off birth control for a bit and stopped having cramps all together for months. i have a history of cysts, but i believe those are also related to my birth control. my mom has fibroids so that's also been in the back of my mind over the last year. this may not be as much of a baby hindrance (she didn't start having issues until a couple years ago), but it still seems horribly unpleasant...
my body hates the pill it seems. i've been on the pill since i was 19. as an experiment (and because i wasn't very active at the time), i stopped taking the pill in 2008. many of the issues i had when on the pill lessened or dissipated, including the death cramps. when i went back on the pill in 2009, i started taking notes. literally, every day i would write in my planner what i was experiencing. when the generic for orthotricyclen was released, it was the best day ever. mostly because of my mood. my emotions were turned up to the max on ortho brand. as i described to a friend, i felt bipolar (rapid cycling) before and during my period. i felt "normal" on the generic. i was pissed when the generic was pulled from the market, and i didn't move fast enough to stock up while pharmacies still had product on site. i took ortho for one month, and that was enough. i've been off the pill again for the last two months
but i'm still taking my notes every month. the goal is to take everything to my current obgyn (dr. J) to discuss. dr. G wasn't able to draw any useful conclusions so i want to review it all with dr. J. i'm hoping she can connect the dots and recommend something better for me. i do want to be on some sort of hormonal birth control. i may have baby fever, but i know full well a baby is not in the budget right now. preventing pregnancy is an absolute must. i always keep a supply of condoms, but i prefer having two methods just in case... the other thing i want to know is if dr. J thinks any of my previous stuff could be indicative of a reproductive issue. i don't know when it's a good time to ask that question, but i'd rather know now if i should be lining up a contingency plan. something i think is a non-issue now could bite me in the uterus later. i might be a tiny bit ridiculous, but i think i'd be more devastated if i were blindsided by my shortcomings*
so what does this have to do with you and women's rights? hmm good question. seems i've gone on a ramble about my crazy body, without making any useful point... perhaps, what you should take from this is to know your body. know what you need, know what you respond to, know how it functions. because if you don't know what it's doing, you probably won't realize when it's doing something wrong. talk with your providers, whether you have a regular ob or visit the planned parenthood when you need to. communication is key regardless of your situation. it may not be your best friend for a week every month, but you should respect your uterus nonetheless. treat it nicely, and one day it'll give you what you want**
*not saying that anyone fails as a cis-woman if not reproducing "normally". i, personally, would feel that i was lacking if my inner bits were dysfunctional
**if you want babies. if you're looking for that lemur circus, you might have to turn elsewhere ;)