From insecurity to full trust in my body
In the spring of 2017, I was in love with life. My new boyfriend was the sweetest thing, we took many weekend trips away, and in the meantime I was writing my thesis. Of course that was stressful, but I constantly felt like floating because I was so in love.
There was only one downside…the winter before, I had decided to try out a non-hormonal contraceptive: the copper IUD. I didn’t want any extra hormones in my body since my menstruation has always been so irregular. Since then, I had been spotting on a daily basis which was not only inconvenient, but made me feel anxious about what effect the IUD was having on my body.
Sunny side up
I was juggling time between meeting my deadlines, spending time with my love and trying to wrap my head around what in the world my body was trying to do with the copper IUD. I went to see the doctor and he told me it was a common side effect of this kind of IUD. He advised me to take some paracetamol… which did not help, surprising as it might sound!
I was very unsatisfied with the doctor’s diagnosis. I felt he had not taken my concern and symptoms seriously.
An unexpected discovery
In search of answers, I sought a second opinion and went to see a gynaecologist. She conducted an internal ultrasound and concluded that the copper IUD was in place and everything looked fine… though mentioned that there were a lot of eggs in my ovaries. To be honest, I got a bit excited – I can still hear myself say, “ha, that must be a good thing right?!” But it wasn’t. It was Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), the hormonal imbalance which interferes with the growth and release of eggs from the ovaries. Basically, a PCOS is where your body produces eggs, but they don’t mature enough and don’t always make “the jump” to your ovary. I was shocked. I wasn’t sure of many things in life, but one thing I was sure of was that I want to become a mother one day – as PCOS affects your ovulation it is one of the reasons that might become more difficult to conceive.
The moment I was diagnosed my research started. Where did this come from? How could this happen? Why did I start taking the pill at age 16? Why has no one ever informed me about PCOS? My irregular periods, my acne even after puberty, my sugar cravings…it all made sense now. The gyno couldn’t help me with any of my questions – I think the medical world still doesn’t know much about PCOS. Doctors still don’t know what causes PCOS. I didn’t receive any information about how to improve my health – I was told to just come back whenever I was ready to have children, to start fertility treatments.
Well, the first thing I did was to have my copper IUD removed. No more sh*t in my body that doesn’t belong there! I switched to a clean, green wholefoods and a mainly plant based diet without additive sugars. To better understand my body and menstrual cycle, I started measuring my Body Basal Temperature every morning, with the help of the amazing Natural Cycles App.
What’s Next (…the future looks bright!)
Over the last four years, I’ve learned so much through cycle tracking.
Sugar has a huge impact on my hormone levels, as well as stress and travelling. When I’m under a lot of stress, or when we’re travelling, or when my food intake changes, my cycle is off. For me, understanding my body and my menstrual cycle has made a world of difference. Now everything makes more sense, if you’re a bit more emotional or aroused… you’re not crazy – it’s your hormones!
Last year my boyfriend and I got married. It was the middle of a pandemic and yet it was so amazing. We didn’t want to wait or postpone, our grand party will come when it is our time. We are so blessed that when we decided we wanted to have a little family of our own, it didn’t take much effort 😉
Trust your body
I know my body, I trust my body and I follow its lead. Now, I’m 7 months pregnant and preparing for the birth of our first baby. The same trust goes here: my body knows what to do and I trust my body and baby deeply. It is truly empowering.
Anything is possible if you stay true to who you are. Your body knows best. You just have to listen and care for it… give the best foods and right environment; low stress, less insulin and LOTS of love (oxytocin) and positivity!
To learn more about Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), check out our comprehensive blog here.
Linda our Eco Femme
Our ambassador from the Netherlands