Second Laparoscopy: Day 3 post-op

Monday, December 20, 2010

By the third day post op, I was able to stay awake for 3-5 hours at a time, and I had to nap for 1 to 1.5 hours at a time.

Around quarter to nine in the morning, I took my temperature. I had been feeling feverish since Sunday night, so I took my temperature and it was 100°F. Hence, taking the temp again in the morning. The glass thermometer read 100.2F, the temporal therm read 99.3F, and the digital oral therm read 99.3F. I thought glass was the most reliable, though. I asked friends’ advice, which really didn’t come back definitive. So I called and left a message with my surgeon’s office. I never did hear back that day.

Around 9:30am, I had diarrhea. Finally, some movement after all evening yesterday suffering with gas that would not exit. The bowel movement happened right after I had a tablespoon of Miralax with my cream of rice and mango cereal.

I took my first shower that afternoon. Note to self, have a meal and tylenol 3 *before* the shower.

Even though I had a shower seat (graciously given to me by my psychologist, who suffers from Crohns Disease) and I had help stepping into and out of the shower, the cramps and mid-back pain still ramped up after my shower. I was so happy to have had a shower, though! No regrets! I was excited to finally change my clothes. I got to wear the new footie pajamas with the drop drawer in back. Turns out the drop drawer doesn’t go as low as I needed, or else my body is all the wrong proportions for those jammies. But it worked out – it did the trick.

Freshly showered and footie pajamas!

Freshly showered and footie pajamas!


I tempted fate and had a baked brown rice tortilla topped with goat cheese and mushrooms for lunch! These are what I call my pizzas.

I tempted fate again and had Saag Paneer with some rice and a mango lassi for dinner!

It felt soooo good emotionally to have solid food.

However, after eating each meal, the pain under the diaphragm returned, because of the stomach being too full yet for my innards to cope well.
I bitched about it on facebook:
“The residual carbon dioxide in my body is REALLY pissing me off. I hurt a lot. :( Walking as much as I can to relieve the pressure build-up.: – December 20 at 3:36pm  
“Although what is hilarious is that my cat Kiki is following closely behind me wherever I walk in the house. Cutest thing ever!” – December 20 at 3:42pm

Monday was Winter Solstice, so I lit lanterns in all of our windows. It was still raining all day for days.

Solstice lantern - kitchen

Solstice lantern - kitchen

Solstice lantern - computer room

Solstice lantern - computer room


That night, we watched the lunar eclipse from our front door! How exciting to know that this was the first total lunar eclipse on Winter Solstice in 372 years! We watched the first half of the eclipse before my body gave out – I experienced debilitating neck pain from looking up (damned bulging discs), and bad pelvic pain from all the standing in the cold misty rain. The next morning, I watched this cool time-lapse video to see the rest of the eclipse.

On Day 3 post-op, I went through 7 Tylenol 3 pills. I had started trying to take one every three to five hours instead of two pills, but it didn’t really work out. Each pill was staggered by half an hour, though, which is a start.

I had started having crazy dreams and nightmares from the Tylenol 3 as of Day 2 post-op. I kept meaning to write down the dreams…alas, I forgot.

Bad pain day

The pain is sharp, continuous and grating. It has been four hours since I took Tylenol 3, and two hours since I took Soma, and yet the pain relief was only about an hour.

alliebroshpainface8

 
I woke around 7:30am after having nightmares all night (likely medication-induced). I woke with heavy flow, and ate some yoghurt so I could take my first Tylenol 3 of the day. I intended to go back to bed, but then could not fall back to sleep because of the pain.

I sat in the hard chair for awhile, until I became tired again, and then I set up camp in bed with the heating pads, laptop and phone. I needed the heating pads super hot, and I did something I’ve never done – I put the electric heating pad on the hottest setting. The sharp pain just wasn’t being touched, it seemed. How terrible.

It wasn’t until I took the Soma two hours into the Tylenol 3 that I got any pain relief. I passed out and enjoyed peaceful, pain-free sleep in a reclined position with my heating pads all over me. But as I said, it only lasted an hour, when I was awakened by the need to empty the bladder and uterus. The flow is really heavy, today.

Because of my tipped (retroverted) uterus, when I am laying down, the blood does not flow down in normal fashion to the vagina and on out of my body. Instead, it pools at the back of the tipped uterus, until I wake with pain or a full feeling. The moment I try to get out of bed, I get the gushing forth of all the pooled blood. Sometimes I’m able to make it to the toilet in time. Other times, the blood squirts with such force that it goes through everything and makes me feel like I’m in my own personal horror flick.

retroverted-uterus-laying-down

 

So I woke from my drug-induced nap with a fullness, immediate pain, and the urge to urinate. The pain did not get better upon emptying the uterus and bladder.

I *did* find some relief by sitting in the damned hard wooden kitchen chair. But after eating a meal (another gluten-free pizza like the one last night, only with chicken instead of ham), I took a new round of drugs – one Tylenol 3 and 600mg Advil gelcaps. I also took a Vitamin C and a Niacin.

It took an hour and a half all told to do the following:

  • Make and eat my meal
  • Write this journal entry
  • Create the image above for this journal entry (that of course took the most time)

 

And now the drugs have made me sleepy again. My husband has suggested I sleep on my stomach, to let gravity pull the menstrual fluid down and out, instead of having it pool up like that. But laying on my stomach aggravates the bulging disks in my neck. :(

Good times. Good times.

Two things accomplished despite the pain

This morning my husband confirmed that he would be late to work so that he could take me to the DMV to renew my license. I hopped in the shower and made myself all pretty and off we went. We made it in time and only had to wait 15 minutes, thanks to me having made an appointment. That standing around though, first for the fee paying for the new license, and second for the photo, caused a lot of pelvic pain. There literally was nowhere to sit. I was on 1 Soma and a half a Tylenol 3 plus 400mg Advil, so I was sleepy and yet still in pain. The trapped nerve in the neck was behaving, at least.
Once I got through everything, I was told my new license will be in the mail in 2-4 weeks.

My husband had parked a few blocks away because the DMV was so packed – I overheard a woman telling someone that the Hayward DMV had closed down, that’s why the Fremont DMV, usually a quicker adventure, was now looking like Oakland (packed out the door all day long. So my husband had parked a few blocks away. I shuffled along and my husband was impatient and worrying about getting to work, so I told him to go on ahead of me. We agreed to meet at the half-way point – at the Smog Station across the street. I went in and used the restroom, and met my husband outside. We drove back home and on the way, I took another half Tylenol 3 for the pain.

The bleeding had subsided ever since my shower this morning, which I was grateful for, but of course the continuing pain let me know that more gushing will be on the way.

I got home and rested a bit, then got a burst of energy, so I tackled the pile of homework still waiting to be finished. I got five illustrations done! I hope to finish off Binder #4 tonight for my Language Arts class, and do some more work on the Rationale paper for that class. Any homework I have left to do is LONG overdue, but I will eventually finish it and hand it in, and will still receive a grade. I’ve not stopped being anxious and guilty about it but I’ve stopped freaking out over it. I come to accept the fact that I’ll still be proud of myself no matter when I turn the homework in, and that all of their threats to have people turn in homework in a 2 week turnaround were mostly empty threats poorly designed to try to motivate people through fear. Which is hilarious, considering the book Positive Discipline, which is so encouraged throughout our Teacher Practicum seminars. But who says anyone ever listens to their own advice or reason. This training center certainly doesn’t.

Around 1:50pm, I re-upped my medication and took 1 Soma and 400mg Advil. I have not needed the Tylenol 3 since this morning, because the cramps abated, and the bleeding still had not resumed.

The Soma made me sleepy, and around 3pm or so, I took a nap in my own bed. I slept for nearly two hours, and woke from some crazy dreams, which I’m sure were medication-induced. I can’t even remember them, now. I think it had to do with a classroom.
I noticed that the bleeding had resumed, but only by a tiny amount, and I was still free of cramps. The trapped nerve in the neck however was agitated again, but it wasn’t time to take meds, yet.

I made myself some late lunch just after 5:30pm, and have been on the couch ever since, just resting. I am groggy from the Soma. I am still feeling really guilty for having taken today off of work, even though I have been drugged all day and know that without the drugs, I’d be in a lot of pain. The early part of the day, I had pelvic pain despite no bleeding. So it’s still valid and it’s still reasonable that I called off for another day.

What is unreasonable for me is that my body chose to have the calm between the storm in the middle of the day, which means the Last Gasp might not happen until tomorrow. This means I stress out, wondering if I’ll have to come home sick from work tomorrow, too. FOUR DAYS! I have NEVER taken four days off work from this job because of the endometriosis. Ugh. Is it because of the new endo growth? This is month two of really heavy bleeding. Is it due to perimenopause? Is it because of leftover stress from the summer training classes? Four Days!!! I don’t even usually take THREE DAYS off in a row like this. It looks so very bad on the résumé, so to speak, and makes me consider whether I should file for disability again. Bah. I don’t miss 14+ days of work in a month, so there’s no sense in filing. They will reject me again. I really hope this job does not fire me for my increased absences. I cannot afford surgery until spring or summer, so absences will happen every month. :(

Something else I accomplished today – I checked back through my diary to see when the last time was that I took Soma when also dealing with endometriosis cramps, and it seems like it was in 2007.
I also found out from my own Things I’ve Tried page that “Soma dissociates me so nicely from the pain but leaves me moderately to severely depressed after taking it for even one day, contributes vastly to weight gain“.

What was I saying recently about how some things are best forgotten? In this case, it would have done me good NOT to forget. Now I have to monitor myself for further depression. I have already been gaining weight – I’ve gained 6lbs in the past month, and my whole body is feeling it. I don’t know if you can relate but I swear, my FAT hurts in my hips and arse. No joke.

Let’s hope I can undo the trapped nerve in the next couple of days, so I can get off the Soma again. But DAMMIT, it DOES dissociate me so very nicely from the endo pain. Blah.

Day 3 in the Underworld

Today I slept in til 10:30am, but when I got up, immediately the pain and bleeding resumed.

I ate a breakfast bar and the last quarter of a protein bar I didn’t finish yesterday, and washed it down with Almond milk so I could take my medication. I took 600mg Advil gel-caps and half a Tylenol 3.

I heated up two rice pads, and then I could not get comfortable. Standing hurt. Sitting hurt worse. Laying on my back hurt. Laying on my side hurt worse. So for awhile I was okay as long as I laid on my belly on the bed with the heating pads on my lower back. I tried propping up on my elbows so I could be on the laptop, but typing on the laptop meant ‘moving around too much’. :(

I’d say I’m at a 7 on the pain scale.

After a short while, my neck and shoulders had enough of that, whether propped up or laying face down, and of course I developed a headache (thanks bulging disks in the neck).

Now I have reheated the rice pads and I’m reclined against two pillows and a pillow chair. The drugs have kicked in enough for the pain to begin easing off. Sleep will follow soon.

Side note: I’m still having crazy/bad dreams. Could be from the meds, not sure at this point cuz the dreams have been ongoing since a week or so before my period.

Currently it is 65°F outside, bright and sunny. Today I am feeling bad for not being out in it, and yet the brightness is hurting my eyes, even through the windows.

Day 2 in the Underworld

Yesterday I consumed over 1,600mg of Advil gel-caps and I think a total of 2 Tylenol 3. I sometimes forget.

…counts remaining pills…

Yeah, that’s correct.

Today I have taken a total of 2 Tylenol 3 and I have consumed 1,000mg of Advil gel-caps.

*** TMI ALERT ***


My day started at a 7 on the Mankoski pain scale and when I sat up in bed, blood just gushed forth. I am so glad that I wore my super giant fabric pad to bed last night. When I got to the bathroom, I was amazed at how soaked the pad was in just that instant. When I had cleaned myself up and got up to flush the toilet, I was amazed to see freshly clotted blood on the lid of the toilet behind me. I tried to wipe it up with a quick motion, but it still smeared. Shock set in at that point, I swear. I can only handle so much blood.
My husband came home from the gym about that time, and I emerged from the bathroom, wide-eyed, and told him all about it, the poor thing.

He takes it in stride, I think. Poor guy has been seeing me in pain and with abnormal periods for the last ten years, now. Hopefully he’s used to the TMI. We’ve both seen each other through surgeries and worse, anyway. We’re young veterans, heh.

In other news, I forgot to take my supplements so far today. It’s been hard, since yesterday and today I have suffered moderate nausea and low appetite.
Last night, my husband brought home sugar-free, dairy-free Coconut Bliss ice cream, and I ate that for dinner, heh.

I noticed that when I’m bedridden, I’m pretty much on a cereal diet, or a diet similar to one who has the flu. Sometimes there’s a load of comfort food / junk food thrown in, but not always.

Today I got so nauseous that I had to stop reading my homework, and I could not look at the computer for very long. I’d type something in chat and then look away for minutes. Still, I forced myself to make some lunch around 2:30pm or so. I cooked up some chicken and made a ‘Thai’ broth; a cup of chicken broth with half a can of coconut milk, 1tbsp chili paste, 2tbsp fish sauce, and some other seasonings. I added broccoli and mushrooms, onions and garlic, and some baked chicken. I put it all over some Basmati rice. It was pretty good. Needs to be spicier next time, and less salty.

After lunch, I read some more homework for a bit, then took a shower. The bleeding usually abates when I spend time in the shower or bath. Or at least it used to. For the last several menstrual cycles, this has not been the case. It’s more like a scene out of Stephen King’s “Carrie”.

Oh and I’m still having weird dreams and nightmares. Last night I had a doozy – an actual out of body experience from sleep state. It was actually kind of neat, though.

Tonight my husband has a dinner engagement that he’s been looking forward to me attending with him, but I have to pass. I don’t want to be center of attention when the cramps start back up again. I don’t feel like being out in public with this much bleeding going on. I don’t use tampons because I’ve always been prone to yeast infections and urinary tract infections, and on top of it, I have a short vagina and a retroverted uterus, so things hurt when they’re put into the canal. And anyway, I bleed right through a damned tampon. So in case anyone wanted to suggest that in order to get me out of the house, you can forget about it. ;)
I feel bad, but at the same time, I’d rather not move around much and make the pain worse. Even getting out of bed to make lunch earlier set off a new round of cramps, and I had taken 400mg Advil. I should have taken twice that, but I knew I was already at the 1,000mg mark for the day, so I backed off until after I got out of the shower, when I took a half a Tylenol 3 in order to make sure there is constant overlap in my medication dosing. Just don’t wanna chance getting up to 7 or 8 on the pain scale again.

The past two days have been sunny and in the 70s outside, and I have not seen any of it. This time around, I don’t even care.

Another day at home

This morning I got up, ate two bowls of cereal, leaned over to pet my cat, and the nausea and weakness set in. The pain and bleeding, which had stopped overnight, also resumed.

I hemmed and hawed for a few minutes, then called in sick to work again. My body wanted to puke and the pain was only a 6 on the pain scale.

At 8am, I took a whole Tylenol 3 pill. Within 18 minutes, the drugs kicked in. Sweet!

I have determined that I’m alright, as long as I *don’t move*. I can stand, or I can lay down with heating pads. Sitting or otherwise moving around is right out.

The part that sucks the most is that my mind is feeling better, but my body is not. My mind is awake, alert and ready to tackle housework. But then I take one step and my pelvis cries out in agony.
The Tylenol 3 is not just good for pain dissociation, it’s also good for knocking me flat, so that I’m forced to rest.

Like, right now. I’m super light-headed and need to go lay down.

9:40am Edit:
Just woke with the most mother effing cramps ever. Too nauseous to eat. Take more Tylenol 3? Take Advil? Call an ambulance?

9:50am Edit:
Heating Amy’s freezer brand gluten free mac ‘n cheese. Will take 4 advil gel caps. Already have 2 heating pads on me. breathing.

10:20am Edit:
Got the mac ‘n cheese down. Got the Advil down. Also took another Tylenol 3. Breathing. Waiting. Pacing. Acupressure points.

11am Edit:
I am effectively dissociated from the pain once more. Trying for sleep again.

1:30pm Edit:
Slept for an hour and 40 minutes (until 12:40pm), pretty good.
Problem is, I wasn’t breathing. Had Tylenol 3 induced nightmares. Woke up choking for air. It’s now nearly an hour after I woke up, and I am still drawing deep breaths and hoping for the full return of my faculties, and I have a headache.

I had crazy dreams/nightmares about my ma’s side of the family, like I *always* do when on a lot of Tylenol 3. We had some sort of reunion in someone’s house, which had an upstairs and a basement. There were small dogs, I think. The family was glad to see me but didn’t know how to act around me – as usual I was the weird one. The family acted as though I was cursed, or worse, an imposter of the blood line. But they tried to be nice to me about it. Then it faded to ignoring me. I tried to get photos but no one would stand still. The photos I did get looked creepy, so I declared the house to be haunted. At the end of the dream, I asked the family to all post skeletons as their user pix on Facebook.

The dream is just my fear of rejection surfacing, again. In the past year, I have reconnected with 23 family members on my ma’s side, mostly cousins. I am supposed to have a family reunion with them sometime this year.

Today sucked.

My last post was at noon today. I ate some leftover dinner, which consisted of crock pot chicken, mushroom soup, spices and rice noodles, and with it I decided to make a medicinal marijuana hot chocolate.

Yesterday I bought a resealable peppermint mocha packet. It says it’s a single serving, but since I’m sensitive to every medication on the planet, I took it easy. I used one tablespoon of the mocha mix in 8oz of heated goat milk, mixed with a tablespoon of Trader Joe’s Sipping Chocolate.
I sipped on the chocolate drink – no immediate results. I sipped until the drink got cold – still no results.

The pain began to ramp up from 3 to 4 and then to 6 on the pain scale. I said screw it and drank down the rest of the no longer hot chocolate in three gulps.

Still nothing.

The pain reached intermittently to 9 on the pain scale, and I broke. I began sobbing from the pain.
In all, it had to be over an hour from first ingestion to feeling any effect of the food grade medical marijuana. At that point, I began to feel light headed. Still crying, I asked my husband very nicely to please scrub out the tub so I could take a hot bath.
The marijuana kicked in while I soaked in the tub. There were a lot of little clots. I bled and bled and tried to just let it all come out. I stared at the soapy water in the tub, and went on some sort of hippie line of thought of interconnectedness, which took me into beautiful mental landscapes and memories of the scenery in the movie Avatar. Once I was able to snap out of my daze, I realised that what I wanted today was pain relief, and what I got instead was a fracking drug trip, and slight dissociation from the pain. But no actual relief. For some reason, the anal pain had returned with a vengeance today, and I wondered if it was due to menstrual blood getting back there and inflaming everything. But no matter what I did, clean myself, soak in warm water – the anal pain stayed on course, stinging and gnawing right along with the uterine pain.

After about half an hour in the tub, I slowly stood up and began drying off. Of course, my period got heavier. I just let it happen. Dried off the best I could, got a new cloth pad on and got dressed.
I applied some Tucks to my asshole and still the pain did not desist.

I paced the house, wondering what to do next for the uterine and anal pain. I sobbed again in the kitchen, I tried to lay on the couch, and then I was in bed, crying from the pain. I tried acupressure as often as I could, and I fear I’ve left bruises on my body from clutching the points for so long.
I told my husband that I didn’t want to be on a stinking drug trip, with sensitive hearing and landscapes of Avatar, being all hippie about how everything is connected to everything else – if I wanted all that, I’d have had a drug party and invited friends over. I wanted pain relief, goddammit. I told my husband I could give him a very detailed report of the pain from a semi-detached point of view, and that’s not what I wanted. I didn’t want dissociation – I wanted NO PAIN.

My poor husband. He’s never done any drugs. He was at a loss for what to do. He felt so helpless and I could see how it frustrated him. He asked me a lot of questions about the trip I was on, about what I could feel and see and hear and what was difficult for me. Hearing is accented; children playing outside, and birds and the sound of the BART train a couple of miles away – were all crisp and clear in my ears, even through closed windows. Cars passing our house sounded muffled in that poorly mixed early 1970s movie sort of way.

My husband fed me 800mg Advil gel caps, and now I had to wait half an hour for those to kick in.
I think it was 25-30 minutes for the Advil to kick in, and the cramps started to calm down.

The medical marijuana made me very tired, and I was glad to be able to get some sleep since the cramps were abating. I slept for nearly two hours, and when I woke, it was dark outside. I had the craziest dreams/nightmares from the marijuana. I cannot remember them, but it was like fever dreams.

An entire day, fighting the pain, on a bad drug trip, caused by ONE TABLESPOON out of a packet intended to be ingested completely in one sitting. The high finally wore off around 7pm. I had a seven hour bad drug trip with no pain relief and minimal dissociation from said pain. DO NOT WANT.

My husband wants me to try the butter again. I’m not touching the medical marijuana again today. If the pain ramps up again, I’m hitting the Tylenol 3. At least I know the effects from that. At least I can split a pill and know what I’m getting into. At least I can still function on the stuff.

Tired on so many levels

I got about 7 hours of sleep before having to wake for the day because the pain forced me out of bed.

I stood groggily in the bathroom, staring in the mirror, trying to figure out if I should take Tylenol 3 with Advil, or eat some more medicated butter with Advil. The pain rose to a 7 on the pain scale.

I remembered eating just a few slivers of the medicated butter on a gluten-free waffle last night. The effects took 20 minutes or longer to kick in, and then I was pain-free for about an hour to an hour and a half. Then the pain returned, but was not an alarming pain. I went to bed with heating pads. Within half an hour, I was awake again and severely stoned. What?!? How did that happen? I was dizzy and slightly nauseous due to being so stoned. Was it the fact that I’d been on half a Tylenol 3 before eating the medicated butter – did it prolong the high? It just seemed like a new wave of stoned was washing over me – after I had gone to bed. Kinda scary.
When my husband crawled into bed around 3am, I woke suddenly and was dizzy and discombobulated. I cried out. I had no idea what was happening. I was on the verge of hallucinating.
My sleep remained broken and full of strange dreams all night.

This is why I stood in the bathroom this morning, contemplating which drug to medicate with. I know the Tylenol 3 like the back of my hand. The medicated butter is new and scary for me, especially since the dosing is completely up to me to figure out, and is not so cut and dry as pill splitting.

TMI FOLLOWS:

When the pain got to a 7 this morning, I also got the urge to defecate. Usually this is bad news – whenever there is pressure on the bowels or the bladder, the endometriosis pain becomes excruciating. While having a movement, I sometimes yell or cry out in pain, and sometimes I get quite nauseated from the pain, but once I’ve had the movement, the pain subsides, leaving me exhausted physically and emotionally. It does not matter if I have a soft stool, or diarrhea – if the bowels are agitated, it can get real bad for me, pain-wise. Of course, if I’m constipated, forget it, I’ll be on the verge of passing out from the pain.
Thankfully this morning the pain did not reach nauseating levels, and I was not constipated. Thankfully the pain abated immediately after the movement, and I’ve been about a 3 on the pain scale for the past hour.

That means I have delayed taking any medication, but the question still faces me – Tylenol 3 or medicated butter?

Today is Sunday. It is only my second day of full on menses and pain. I estimate I’ll be missing work tomorrow, based on years of experience as to how long my cycle lasts and how many days of bleeding and pain go with it.
That means I should not feel guilty over whatever medication I choose to take today, and if it leaves me too groggy to go to work in the morning, it’s okay, because I am taking care of myself today and in the here and now while the pain is present.
I spent too many years pushing myself to go to work despite still being in a lot of pain, or being exceedingly groggy from the pain and the medication to treat it. When my body tells me it is ready to return, and that could be tomorrow, then I will return. If it is not ready to return, then I will take the day off. No more of dad’s words in my head, telling me to “crawl in to work if you have to“. No more bullshit in my head from the Celestine Prophesy/The Secret/What The Bleep? cultists out there who say that I’ve manifested my own illness by way of pessimistic thinking or as they call it “Law of Attraction” (I’ve ranted about this in the past).

I’m tired.

I’m tired because of my broken sleep last night. I’m tired of proving myself to the entire world that I really am doing the best I can to treat the illness as it exists in my own meatsack. I’m tired of going through the pain every month, and the side effects of various treatments and medications. I’m tired of losing sunny days to the pain (this is Day 2 of not being able to go out into the warm sunshine and bicycle or go for a walk or run around town with my husband in a care-free manner, enjoying the weekend).

I’m currently at a 3 on the pain scale, with intermittent ass-shooting pain, which takes me up to a 7 on the pain scale. Need more breakfast food. Will report back later.

Me and synthetic hormones don’t mix

The clock has already reset. I didn’t want to blog about this at first because it’s embarrassing, but for my own historical record, I really NEED to record this.

My husband and I were not careful enough during intimacy on our anniversary, and as a result, I was afraid of an unwanted pregnancy.

I know, it may seem as strange when the media feeds everyone’s brains with the lie that endometriosis always results in infertility. Furthermore, I’ve not seen anyone in the endometriosis forums bravely declaring that they don’t want children. No, instead the forums and media are filled with stories of women with endo who are also having a hard time trying to conceive, and are distraught over it.
Their situation is real and I feel bad for them. I have stage III endometriosis but I am unfortunately still quite fertile, yet I do not want children. If there were only a way to switch that with someone who wanted kids…

Because of my anxiety that I could become pregnant, I sought out emergency contraceptive (in the U.S. it is known as Plan B, and it is over the counter at the pharmacy to women 18 and older).
I have taken Plan B before, many years ago. I knew that it would make me depressed, and I have established that my body cannot tolerate synthetic hormones. But due to our carelessness, I needed peace of mind, and it was only a one-dose hormonal treatment, so I took the Plan B.

Wed. July 15 – anniversary – unprotected sex.
Thur. July 16 – first dose Plan B at 1:58pm. Within 30 minutes, I developed a gurgly stomach, which turned into stomach cramps and intermittent uterine pain for the rest of the day. I also experienced mild nausea. Heavy fatigue took over by 5pm – I could barely keep my eyes open. Later, I had a poor appetite – I did not want dinner. I forced myself to eat a banana before bed. I took a shower, forced myself to do some mild housework, and went to bed by 9:30pm.
Fri. July 17, 2009 – took last dose at 1:58am. I had crazy dreams all night involving tornadoes, floods, murderous gypsy types and a world of magick and sorcery.
Friday – Sunday was hugely emotional, depressive, moody, and angry for me. I spent much of the time not wanting to interact with my husband or anyone, because I was in such a bad head space to even try saying anything polite. I mean, even my husband was concerned about me, and at times got his feelings hurt, and would react by saying, “hormones.” I seriously agree – I also attribute the moods and anger to the Levonorgestrel.
Tue. July 21 – I had an unexpected sugar crash around noon. I only ever get hypoglycemia right before menses begins, because my hormones are out of whack. Ever since adhering to a gluten and yeast free diet since 2006, I don’t get the hypoglycemic attacks with regularity – ONLY within a few days of menses. So having a sudden sugar crash on July 21 concerned me.
Wed. July 22 – 12:20pm I had another hypoglycemic attack, AND began spotting. It was dark red “dirty blood” and looked a bit coffee ground-like sometimes. There were tiny clots. Shortly after going to the bathroom, the cramps started.

I checked rxlist.com for info:

“Some women may experience spotting a few days after taking Plan B™”.

“The effects of Plan B™ on carbohydrate metabolism are unknown. Some users of progestin-only oral contraceptives (POPs) may experience slight deterioration in glucose tolerance, with increases in plasma insulin…”

I took 600mg Ibuprofen, called my GYN and ordered a refill for Tylenol 3 (I don’t normally let myself run completely out but accidentally did so this time), and took off to the grocery store to get some ready-made foods in case I would be bedridden again.

The spotting lasted all day, and so did the cramps. On the pain scale, I’d rate the cramps as a 4 on the Mankoski Pain Scale. Over the course of the day, I also developed low back pain, but I mostly attributed that to having moved stuff around all day (and yes, I did wear a protection belt for lifting).

Thur. July 23 – I awoke around 5:39am from the pain. I went to the bathroom and found to my dismay that I’m full on bleeding – I filled the bowl with blood. The pain in my lower back became very strong, and I started to get a bit nauseous. The pain level was at 7.5. I took my temperature but it was ‘normal’ (normal for me being around 97.5°F, but I don’t have thyroid issues, so say all the blood tests I’ve gotten for the past ten years… riiiiiight).
I called the makers of Plan B and told them about my experience. They said it was all normal. They said some women spot and others get what looks like a full on period. She even said the level of low back pain and the cramping were normal. Still, she took a basic medical history from me to put it on file so they can have a log of adverse reactions up to date.
By 7pm I was severely depressed with suicidal ideation. I called the Plan B hotline again. They have no studies and no records of anyone ever experiencing depression as a side effect to Levonorgestrel.
Fri. July 24 – I bled through my pad, underwear and bedclothes, and went through a pad an hour since I woke up. The cramps were still persistent, ranging from 4-7 on the scale, and mostly centered in the lower back and vagina, or lowest part of the uterus if anything.
I endured a pelvic exam w/ speculum, which made the cramps worse. I did a pee test. Negative as expected for pregnancy. I was told that I am obviously having a reaction to the hormone from the Plan B, and there’s nothing to do at this point but to ride it out, taking Ibuprofen 3x/day, as it is supposed to help ease up the blood flow. The doc also is supposed to send in a script for some Tylenol 3 – not my usual supply – just a sampling as it were, to get me through this. I am referred back to my GYN, who has not returned any of my phone calls this week.
Had another hypoglycemic attack – at 12:43pm. The third in as many days, around the same time of day.
My GYN office finally called back to tell me that my doctor has sent in my Tylenol 3 prescription, which should be ready today. The office seemed indifferent to my Plan B story, but did say the pain with the bleeding seemed unusual.

I spent all last night into today digging through every diary entry I’ve ever made, be it handwritten or typed to myself in an email or filed somehow or another on my computer, because I know I detailed Plan B side effects before. I just can’t remember anything past a general sense of ‘I got depressed on it’.
With all my searching, I found three instances in the past ten years where I took Plan B, prior to the current run:

July 2001
S M Tu W Th F S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31

July 11 – got my normal period
July 13 – drove to Tahoe w/ my hubby (who was then my bf)
July 14 and/or 15, 2001: unprotected sex
July 16 – Period ended but I took Plan B anyway. Depressed from having spent money I didn’t really have that weekend, from getting sunburnt, from being careless w/ sex.
July 17 – continued deepening depression.
July 19 – feeling happier emotionally
July 20 – started spotting, then bleeding
July 21 – very heavy bleeding
July 22 – heavy bleeding
July 25 – stopped bleeding
July 26 – severely depressed and angry
Aug 15 – got my normal period late; bedridden from the pain.

December 2001
S M Tu W Th F S
1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31

Sun. Dec. 9 – Took Plan B (forgot to take 2nd pill). But one pill was enough to depress my central nervous system and I noticed the depression within a day.
Mon. Dec. 10 – took Flexeril to ease the back pain – I’d thrown out my back the week prior.
Mon. Dec. 17 – severely depressed. 3 hour mental breakdown. Convinced I was still riding the depression from the Plan B. My back was better by the 17th, however.

Did not mention bleeding as side effect in my long journal entry on Dec. 17, 2001. However, I had a phone conversation with my ma, who was still going through menopause at the time. I had asked if she could see a doctor to ease the menopause side effects. She said she can’t take hormone pills – they mess with her – make her angry, very bitchy and depressed. She said her older sister, my Aunt J, gets the same way. I told my mom that was VERY good family info to have on record.
It’s already been noted by my mom that several of her sisters had painful periods like I do. Adding sensitivity to hormone pills, and depressions locks it down to a known family history.

Well, you know how people are stupid and history repeats itself…

October 2002
S M Tu W Th F S
1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31

Tues, Sept. 17 Got my period, which was quite painful
Monday Sept. 23 Had a severe emotional breakdown
Tues, Sept. 24 Sister called and told me she’s pregnant
Sun, Sept. 29 Hubby (then bf) and I fooled around
Tues, Oct 1 Took Plan B, paranoid from fooling around
Fri, Oct 4 My sister arrived from Michigan to visit
Thurs, Oct 10 I became sick; strep
Sun, Oct 13 Sister departed for Mich, I called in sick
Mon, Oct 14 off work sick, went to doctor
Tues, Oct 15 off work sick, got my regular period
Wed, Oct 16 returned to work, still very depressed

Did not mention bleeding as side effect in my journal entry on Oct. 17, 2002. Still trying to find any emails or journal entries from that time frame to see if I talked about bleeding at all.

I’ll be adding the full text of those diary entries at some point, just so I have the history on this site.

I’d like to note for the record that Plan B has the same ingredient that is found in the Mirena IUD, which my gynecologists have been begging me to try since 2006.
Since I cannot even handle low doses of drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol synthetic hormones (as found in birth control pills), and now I know that Levonorgestrel also sets off the depression and rage, there is no way in hell I want a continuous dose of it through the Mirena IUD. I do not want a repeat of 2007, when I became suicidal on Yasmin, thanks.

My husband said he is going to look into getting a vasectomy.

In the meantime, I have to ride the rest of this nightmare out, and then in the next two to three weeks, endure more pain and suffering when my actual period reappears.
I hope that I can once and for all remember two things: be super careful if I don’t want to worry about pregnancy, and never, ever, EVER take Plan B or any synthetic hormone ever again. My husband said he is happy to remind me to never go near hormones again after seeing me get severely depressed from them twice, now.

Stupid nightmares

I stayed home because of the pain and heavy bleeding today. I took a Tylenol 3 and within an hour had to go to sleep. I have no idea how I got through work yesterday because I was on Tylenol 3 then, too. Being at home I guess allows me to just go pass out with freedom.

I was on the couch at first but couldn’t get comfortable – I needed to stretch out my legs and couldn’t, and then my cat was meowing incessantly. So I got up and moved to the bedroom. It took awhile to settle – the Tylenol 3 made me VERY cranky and my anxiety was up again, too.

My first dream entailed me being at some diner somewhere, trying to order something as I sat at a small table near a partition. Suddenly, my left eye began to twitch and droop. Eventually my eye stuck itself shut and couldn’t open, and my vision was getting blurry in the other eye. I couldn’t order when the waitress came to me. I began to panic and went to the restroom. I may have been at Tillie’s diner across town….anyway, when I went to the restroom, I looked in the mirror and my eye was puffed out and stuck mostly shut. I tried to pry my eyelids open and could see my eyeball stuck in a downward position in all its viscous horror.
I then began to get tremors, not just in my eye but my whole head. It felt like a seizure coming on. I ran back into the diner and appealed to the horrified waitress. I asked her to look at me and tell me if I looked okay. The look on her face confirmed that I really wasn’t okay; I wasn’t imagining things. I began to shake, told her I might be having a seizure, and to please call 911.
As she did so, I was somehow able to get on chat or text my husband and ask him to call 911.

When the police officer arrived, I was no longer at the diner, but in a place considered to be my home (it didn’t look at all like my home in real life). I get the feeling I lived alone in this place. The police officer asked me “what seems to be the problem” and looked completely put out to have to have arrived to pick me up. I told him I needed an ambulance and needed to go to the hospital. The cop wasn’t buying my story and said I looked fine. I ran to the mirror and checked my eyes and face. Although the swelling went down a bit, I was still in bad shape. I went back to the police officer and explained to him that I was having seizures and eye twitches and my eye is still sealed shut and I can’t drive in this condition, I need an ambulance NOW!
The officer tried to tell me that maybe if I just wait it out, I’d be fine. The dream ended with me trying to convince him to allow me to go to the hospital.

I can’t remember if that dream flowed into the next or if I’d awakened for a few seconds and drifted back to sleep again.

My second dream had me encountering a kid as I walked back to my house from somewhere. I think I was in Michigan near my first childhood home. The kid was between the age of 10-12, short for his age, curly short black hair but not frizzy or too tightly curly, and darker skinned than me but not ebony. I can’t remember how we first encountered each other on this walk, but he began to follow me and beg. I think he was a homeless kid that everyone in the neighborhood knew. There’d been some teenagers hanging with him who followed us for a few seconds but seeing that I was interacting positively with the kid, let us go on alone. I remember saying something to him about when I was little, then added that he is not little anymore, not like the kids I teach at school.
But the kid got annoying and acted out. I had to pick him up and carry him as though I were carrying a preschooler in my class to the observation chair for having acted out and refusing to go of his own accord to said chair.

Once back at my house, which was very much like my first childhood home, the kid began going through my stuff. There was something that he made fly through the house, a heavy paper object or toy of some sort. We played with that for a few minutes. The house was starkly empty and there was an echo when we talked.
After a few minutes, the kid began trying to steal stuff. I chased him through my house and swatted his hands away from stuff and emptied his pockets and scolded him and told him I’d given him things already, he didn’t have to take MY stuff. This just made him act out even more, in a mad grab session, running through my house.

As I chased him, the house began to get creepy. It began to shake like an earthquake. We ran outside and there was no earthquake. The kid still had stuff belonging to me so I resumed trying to pry stuff from his hands. He wasn’t laughing – he was serious about taking it, and we struggled with each other. I began hitting him. At this point, two young teen boys (probably about 13 years old) came by to check on the younger boy and saw us struggling. They joined in, picking through comic books and games and other stuff that my husband had on some bookshelves just outside of the house, against the exterior wall of the house in the driveway and on the porch. I tried grabbing stuff back from them, too, telling them it belongs to us, it belongs to my husband, it belongs to me, etc…
The younger boy had run off – we’d come to the house from the left side of the street facing the house, and he’d taken off across the lawn to the right side of the house and ran up the street. I tried to chase after him but that’s when I noticed the two older boys, who were now ripping pages out of my husband’s comic books and graphic novels. When I tried to stop them, they explained that the pages are supposed to be ripped out and placed on a laminated mat of some sort. I told them ‘but that’s for my husband to do when he wants to because it’s his!’ but the boys continued.
Enraged, I began hitting them, too. Striking them, bashing them, anything I could do to make them stop taking our STUFF.

That’s when my haunted house began acting up again – things rattling inside, crashing about. I want to say we all went inside and experienced the rumbling shaking of the house, the swinging flickering lights and all that, but it’s fuzzy now upon recollection. Either we all went in or I went in and came back out again. There had been a 12 or 13 year old girl at this point who was also with the boys, also rifling through my STUFF, and I struggled with her, too, attacking her. She got all upset and I told her to go tell her mommy, then. She gave an evil grin and I shrugged and told her I looked forward to the exchange.

I needed to go back into the house and by this time, it was getting dark outside and the lights that were on in the house made a yellow glow. The rooms were dark. I went through the empty house, wondering where all my STUFF had gone. The house smelled like a basement. In fact, perhaps I was in the basement (The house in the dream looked nothing like my real childhood home on the inside). I was in a large room and diagonally to my left there was a doorway leading to the next room. At the far end of that room was a small bathroom, and the light was on, and water was running. I walked towards it.
Something either told me to run BECAUSE it was going to get very scary and possibly a murderer lurked in that back room – one of the kids- or something popped out at me. Either way, I booked it outta there, and began screaming because I knew something was closing in behind me, and fast.

That’s when I woke up, and my eyes felt puffy…

I got out of bed and checked myself in the mirror. Thankfully, I did not look like my first dream…

Have I mentioned how much I hate Tylenol 3’s side effects? The nightmares are caused by me likely not getting enough air, because the codeine has suppressed my respiration.

But of all the meds I’ve tried, I have the least amount of trouble with Tylenol 3.

Regarding the dreams… they do hold meaning, drug induced or not. I’ve been having a problem with my left eye spasming for about two months, now. The spams are minor but I need to talk to a doctor about it, because magnesium and potassium, which I was once told would help with that, has not. I have a doctor appointment this Saturday.

The cop not taking me seriously in the dream is directly attributable to the secretary at my GYN office who I spoke with this morning. I was explaining that I’d like to speak to or see my GYN because I’ve had abnormal periods since February, and also having endo, I’d like to just get checked out to make sure nothing bad is going on. She totally brushed me off and said cycles change as one gets older and it’s nothing to worry about. She didn’t believe I had endo and asked me accusingly, “Are you DIAGNOSED with endo??”
Uh, yeah lady, stage III, and it’s been two years since surgery, and the shit grows back, so piss off already. I wanted to say that, but instead I shot back, “Yes, Stage III, diagnosed in 2007.”
She put me on hold, came back and said, “so you’re having pain?”
I retorted, “LOOK, I *always* have pain, it’s what happens with endo. This has nothing to do with the pain. It’s the cycle switching up on me when for many years it NEVER DID THAT.”

She said she’d leave a message for the GYN to call me back. Bitch.

So yeah, the cop not taking me seriously in the dream? Same bitch.

I don’t know about the stuff being stolen or about the kids in the second dream. I never hit children, though older children like the ones in my dream, I have to say it is difficult to work with them. That’s why I only choose to work with the wee ones.

Being chased by the kids or the haunted house towards the end of the dream may refer back to my recent job harassment, or may stem from a jealousy issue I’ve been wrestling with.

DreamMoods says, “To dream that you have been robbed, denotes that you are experiencing an identity crisis or you are suffering some sort of loss in your life. Alternatively, you may feel that someone has stolen your success or has taken credit for something you did.”
Again, tied to the job harrassment because I left one career field after harassment, went back to my old career, and have been getting harassed there, and now I don’t know what to do with my life, what career options I have, how I’ll make it financially, etc.

DreamMoods also says, “To dream that you a seizure, suggests that you need to have more control in your life.”
Yeah well lots of dream topics end up translating to that.

DreamMoods says, “To dream that you are being haunted, indicates early unpleasant traumas and repressed feelings or memories. You are experiencing some fear or guilt about your past activities and thoughts.”

*sigh*

And now the cramps are back again.