Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I'm still here....trying to figure all of this out....

Hi everyone.  I'm sorry that I dropped off there for awhile.  It's been busy, I'm trying to pull of graduate school right during these years home with my kids before I return to work...and I'm still trying to figure out all of this Mirena stuff....

(Before I get stared with the entry, I noticed that I have several emails from some women.  I'm so sorry that, with my traveling, etc., that I haven't responded.  I will this week.  I PROMISE.)

As you know, I had another crash a month or so ago.  So, I went back to see Dr. J., and I started another protocol from Standard Process.  This time, I wasn't needing detox help like with the first time.  My symptoms that are still an issue now are most definitely hormonal.  My areas that were "off" at this second trip to Dr. J's were as follows:

--Gall Bladder
--Uterus
--Ovaries (right one, primarily)
--Thyroid
--Pituitary
--Hypothalamus
--Adrenals
--Hydrocloric acid in my stomach

Out of all of those, he said that my top three problems were #1. OVARIES,  #2., THYROID, and #3., HYPOTHALAMUS.

So....I started a whole new supplemental protocol that I will detail in another blog entry.  I do notice that I definitely feel better when I take them verses when I don't.  I should hope so....I have to take a TON of supplements right now.

Here are some of the things that I'm trying to process/am thinking about right now.  I'm sure it will come across as rambling because that is pretty much what it is going to be:

First and foremost, I'm still trying to figure out what I can do to regulate my hormones.  I'm so happy that I was able to deal with the physical toxicity issue, etc., but there are still random days that I feel like I'm struggling so hard just to maintain a "normal" emotional pattern....and I can't seem to find much of a rhyme or reason to it.  I definitely seem to struggle the most right after my period is wrapping up until I ovulate.  Then, I tend to feel much better from ovulation until I'm done with my period again.  I've been documenting each day that feels off to me, and I'll be anxious to see--after a few months--if I can notice any sort of pattern.  My guess is, after doing a lot of reading on it, my body is still either not making any progesterone or is still extremely deficient.  This was one paragraph that I found on low progesterone, and I will highlight the issues that I deal still deal with:

"Low progesterone levels manifest in a series of highly uncomfortable symptoms such as: insomnia, dizziness, irritability, difficulty concentrating, intense mood swings, bloating, weight gain, muscle pain, joint pain and urinary incontinence. Other signs of low progesterone include frequent urinary tract infections, interstitial cystitis, changes in appetite, hot flashes, cold chills, night sweats and vaginal dryness."

Take this week for instance.  I had a couple of days where I felt a little "off", one day where I was anxious enough where I had to take a half of a Xanax to be able to get my mind to slow down enough to have any sort of concentrated train of thought...and then yesterday, I felt fantastic....full of energy and in a great mood.  Now today, my joints hurt, my vision (which has been bad since the Mirena) is even more distorted than usual, and my emotions are all over the place.  I don't have any patience, and I teared up watching the cartoon movie Horton Hears a Who, for goodness sakes.  My mind is all foggy, and it's hard to really have a clear train of thought. 

It is soooooooooooo frustrating.  What is different today than yesterday?  NOTHING....I did NOTHING differently.  UGH UGH UGH.....

I hate living in this kind of "limbo" that the Mirena seems to throw us in.  I'm actually at the point where I am very good at hiding the days that I am struggling as far as anyone noticing, but boy do I notice on the inside.  It's frustrating to be at a point in life where I feel like I just have to accept that I will feel good for about two weeks  out of each month, and I may struggle the rest of the time. 

That being said, I'm not anywhere near where I was before I did my first detox.  I don't have any of those major anxiety attacks anymore (thank you, Jesus!), although, I do still have some issues of lower levels of anxiety/uneasiness on my bad days.  Sometimes, I crack a Xanax in half just so that I can pull myself out of it because I don't have time to be like that all day.  I don't like being in a phase of my life where I wake up, and I'm not sure if it is going to be a weak or a strong day...and I haven't even gotten out of bed yet.  I try to continue to rejoice in the fact that atleast I have strong/good days now.  I couldn't have said that six months ago.  I'm definitely heading in the right direction.  It's just that I am now almost 10 months post removal.  I want to know that someday it will be ALL over.  No more Mirena effects/damage to deal with.  I just don't know.  I read posts from women who were back to their normal selves after a year....but then I read posts from women who have had it out for a couple of years, and they still have all sorts of effects still lingering.  I can't even begin to explain how much I pray that, one day, I can make the post that I'm back to 100%...or atleast close enough that I don't notice anything.

The brain fog and inability to truly concentrate on my off days is maddening.  It makes me so frustrated, I can't even tell you.  I sit there and KNOW that I should be able to think, process, etc....and I can' t get my mind to do it.  It's like my brain starts getting "bogged down" or something.  Usually, at that same time, my vision is even more blurry than usual.  Now, imagine days of that happening and trying to pull off graduate school.  Yeah.  Not so easy.  :-(

Here's where I'm at right now.  I'm still taking the supplements.  I probably will be for awhile because I do so much better when I take them.  I also just set up an appointment with my GP to talk about taking a blood test to check my progesterone levels.  I'd love to hear what some of you who have gone through the homonal testing have to say.  I've heard some day that the blood testing isn't that accurate, and you should do a saliva test.  Hmmmmm....I honestly don't know. 

I also notice that on my "bad" days, my joints/muscles hurt more than usual.  Anyway, just throwing that out there.....things like noticing that when I walk up the staircase, my legs hurt for a couple of minutes afterward.  Annoying.

Here's something else....and maybe it is just because I am approaching my 35th birthday, and it is just "my time", but have any of you felt like you were aging SO MUCH FASTER than before all of this?  I don't mean just how you feel--I mean literally looking at yourself in the mirror and noticing how fast your face, etc. has aged over this past year?  I look at pictures of myself or look at myself in the mirror, and OH MY GOODNESS...the increase in facial wrinkles alone that have increased just in the past year is nuts.  Again, maybe it is just my point in time where I am going to start aging, but it seems to have really gone in fast forward over these past months.  The only reason I bring that up is because I've also read a lot that estrogen dominance/hormonal imbalace, etc. has a main symptom of accelerated aging.  That is me FOR SURE.  Suddenly, I catch myself looking at Botox ads a bit more carefully....ha ha.....  (See?  Still trying to keep my sense of humor through all of this....some days are just better than others).

Okay....so that is where I am in a nutshell right now.  Must better than six months ago, but still have randomly occuring days where I still feel like things "short circuit" a bit.  I'm not going to lie, it makes me nervous about the day that I return to work.  I have only a couple of years left before my youngest is in school, and I will return to my career....and I can honestly admit that I am nervous about it.  On my good days--NO PROBLEM...but on my "bad" ones?  Forget it.  I can hardly form a train of thought correctly.  How in the world will I be able to teach that day when I can't think?  I am just so thankful that, since this had to happen to me, that it happened during this time at home.  I also just pray and pray that it is all resolved and healed by the time I return to my career. 

I'm following along some women who are taking bio-identical hormones, and they are swearing by the results.  They are talking about how much better they feel, and so I 'm definitely following along with them to see how it works out for them.  I am just not at the point yet where I feel confident enough to do it myself.  Dr. J. told me that any sort of hormone replacement therapy, even if it is all natural, still makes your body dependent of them and stop even trying to make its own.  That makes me nervous because that is exactly what has happened with my progesterone because of the Mirena.  So, that makes me understandably uncomfortable about taking anything else that will make my body "give up" on trying to fix itself hormonally, you know?  I'm not going to lie, though, if years pass and I don't get past any of these obvious hormonal symptoms, I may consider it....and that is why I'm watching to see how these ladies continue to do with it.  It just also makes me nervous because I have read/heard way too many accounts where the woman is forced to take them for the rest of her life because she will crash even harder if she stops taking them.  No thank you.  I've had enough crashes, thankyouverymuch.

Again, I'm not saying not to do it.  Heck, I'm not even saying that I may not end up having to do it.  I honestly have no idea.  I'm just "talking" to you as (as promised) about exactly where I am at right now and how I feel about it.

I'd also love to hear from anyone who has tried acupuncture after their Mirena experience.  Did it work for you?  Worth it? 

I'd love to have anyone post comments about any of this.  Let's get a dialogue going.

I'm still praying for all of us.  Keep fighting, ladies.

6 comments:

  1. Hi, this may be unrelated to your post, but I found you, oddly, through a forum when I was looking for info about bio-identical hormones. I have a copper IUD and I was wondering if those can cause some of the same symptoms that you have had with the Mirena? Or is it only the hormones/ silicone from the Mirena that caused your symptoms? I have some of the same symptoms you have had but I have attributed mine to post partum anxiety/ depression. Just curious. Very interesting blog, I am now more scared of the Mirena IUD than I already was.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hello! I am so relieved to have found your blog. I am also 10 months post mirena (implanted in December 2009 and taken out in September 2010). I had never been on any type of hormone birth control... so I thought my symptoms were normal. I had mine taken out because of joint pain, headaches and panic attacks. Thankfully I have had no panic attacks since removal, but my joint pain and headaches are ongoing.
    I, like you, have "good" days and bad days. I haven't tried any treatment for my ongoing problems (afraid of more side-effects), but have been tested for every other disease/disorder that could cause these symptoms (MS, Lupus, Thyroid issues, brain tumors, cancer...). I am going to see my GP again soon for my yearly checkup and will bring up hormone testing. She is a great doctor and hopefully will have some insight into where to go from here.
    I was wondering if you have long spans of time where you feel good? I seemed to be improving a lot this winter and now that summer is here I am back to a lot of bad days.
    Good luck to you and I hope we can learn from each other on this journey to post-Mirena normalcy. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow! You are speaking to my heart here! I've read through your entire blog now and I cannot thank you enough for putting this out there.

    I had my mirena removed in May' 09. After suffering for so long I had my first saliva extended hormone panel in Aug '10. My progesterone levels came back so low my dr was shocked. They were the lowest numbers she'd ever seen. In addition my testosterone was low and my estrogen was way high. I'd highly recommend going the saliva route. It is so much more thorough. I also did an adrenal saliva panel at the same time and that was a whole other mess. Darn mirena....

    ReplyDelete
  4. hello there, ive visited before,and have been blown away @ these businesses :( i hate em. I have found where this business should have LISTED my side effect. IF it were listed i wouldnt have been interested in the mirena. Im sure many of women wouldnt be. POW thats the money maker....I have the side effect of seizures :( i'm trying to sue, this has been done before under the norplant! just under a higher dosage and a different location of the body...its the same DRUG!!!totally UNFAIR!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I see that this post is old but I'm wondering how you are doing this days? I had my mirena for 5 years and never had one problem, removed it nearly 4 months ago and have not started with anxiety, 10lb weight gain, dizziness, bloating, reflux. Is there light at the end of this tunnel?

    ReplyDelete
  6. I see that this post is old but I'm wondering how you are doing this days? I had my mirena for 5 years and never had one problem, removed it nearly 4 months ago and have not started with anxiety, 10lb weight gain, dizziness, bloating, reflux. Is there light at the end of this tunnel?

    ReplyDelete