After my last entry, I had gone to bed (it took awhile to write all that stuff!!).

Around 12:20am I awoke in screaming pain.

I tried to get out of bed and WOOSH tidal wave LOOK OUT blood everywhere. Didn’t get any on the bed but I thought my innards would just slide right out at any second.

Earlier, george had subsided and I started to feel better all around. I decided I’d go to work on Tuesday. I was completely mad from cabin fever for the last four days and had to get out, even if it meant going to work.
But there I was after midnight, whimpering from pain all over again.
Gushing everywhere like it was Sunday all over again. I thought I had gushed it all out the day prior, I swear. I popped 4 ibuprofen and grabbed the heating pad and went back to bed.

Next morning I got up for work as planned and I felt all right.
Went to work and was fine til around 11:30am and then it hit all at once without warning AGAIN.

Nearly 12 hours later? WTF???

Got home yesterday and felt better. When I went to bed, george was nearly gone. Happy monkey!

However, a storm had rolled in during the night. Wind and rain pounded the side of the apartment building and the windows, keeping me from restful sleep all night.

Woke up this morning and made myself a quesadilla w/ lotsa spinach, which is rich in iron and vitamin K.
I used soy cheese instead of cow cheese in the quesadilla. Nummy!

Went to work and was fine til around 11:45am and then it hit all at once without warning. Deja fecking vu.

I told my bf that I must be going with the ocean tides or something and then I just couldn’t handle the severity of that statement so I started yelling “HOLY CRAP IF THAT’S TRUE THEN THAT’S PRIMORDIAL, BASIC AND AUTOMATIC, INSTINCTUAL AND COMPLETELY OUT OF MY CONTROL!!!

My bf’s eyes grew wide at my outburst and he smiled nervously.
Hormonal rage took over once more, eh Steph?

And my own words have echoed in my ears all day:


And I wanted even more than ever before to find a way to stop this evil machine, but the Mind just won’t let me.

Ever see that X Files episode with the giant underground mushroom?
I felt like a character in that. Like I had been affected by the mushroom and didn’t know reality from hallucination.

I felt like I was finding myself in the pod in The Matrix after having seemingly lived out a third of my life.

I bled and was in pain all afternoon up til the time I got home, and then everything calmed down again.

When I got out of the car, I walked to the beach and stared at the fierce bay waters as they surged forth, filled with sand carried by waves from I dunno how deep under.
Another storm was on the way.

Once home, I looked up ocean tides.

For February 24th:
HIGH 2:30ish AM (cramps hit 12:20am, 2 hours before HIGH)
LOW 9ish AM (cramps hit 11:30ish am, 2ish hours after LOW)
HIGH 3ish PM (cramps subsided)
LOW 8:30ish PM (no cramps)

For February 25th:
HIGH 3ish AM (no cramps)
LOW 9:30ish AM (cramps hit around 11:45am, 2ish hours after LOW)
HIGH 3:30ish PM (continued cramps thru HIGH)
LOW 9ish PM (no cramps)

So there it is. My flow is NOT aligned with high or low tide, but ALL tides.

Meaning…random occurance.

Dude, chill.

So I’m chillin. There’s been a huge storm roaring outside, complete with bright zig-zagging lightning and booming, roaring thunder which rattles the windows and walls, just like back in Michigan.
Oh, it’s been SO long since I’ve experienced a thunderstorm like this.
Last time was September, 2001 in Michigan. I stood on my brother’s front porch and drank beer with the family. It was my nephew’s seventh birthday. He’d had a great day; bright and warm outside.
Dusk brought the storm, which we adults sat outside to enjoy.
The sky turned evil and lightning bolts shot and we watched like it was fireworks, and my man said, “I’m gonna die.” We all laughed the evil “You’re not from around here, are ya boy?” laugh.
Can’t wait til June when I go back to see my sister get married.
I’m hoping for another thunderstorm, before or after the wedding, of course. And my man and Sherpa can BOTH wet themselves while I laugh the evil “You’re not from around here, are ya boy?” laugh.

Information quoted below is from the book endometriosis – A KEY TO HEALING THROUGH NUTRITION – Dian Shepperson Mills & Michael Vernon.

I have highlighted the areas that I am most interested in from the information presented below. I have intentionally omitted some text from the book if it did not suit my needs here, but I did not in any way manipulate information found in the book to suit my needs. That is to say, I did not take sentences or paragraphs apart and reconstruct them for my own evil ends.

The control centre for the reproductive cycle is the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland in the brain. The hypothalamus secretes hormones (chemical messengers) which control their timing and the amount of hormone produced by the pituitary gland in the brain. The pituitary gland can be viewed as the ‘master gland’ of the endocrine system, since its hormones orchestrate the activity of most of the other endocrine glands of the body, including the ovaries in women and testes in men.
The pea-sized pituitary gland nestles in a bony cavity at the base of the skull. It has a rich blood supply that allows it to distribute its hormones rapidly throughout the body. The pituitary gland is divided into two parts: the anterior and posterior pituitary.

1. The anterior pituitary secrets several protein hormones which affect a variety of glands and tissues in the body. However,
the two major hormones of the anterior pituitary that affect the reproductive system are follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH). These two hormones control the activity of the ovaries, and are very important controls for fertility.
2. The posterior pituitary also secretes several protein hormones.
Oxytocin is the hormone that most directly affects the reproductive system. Oxytocin causes the smooth muscle of the uterus to contract during the birthing process. Oxytocin production is dependent on sufficient levels of the mineral manganese. It is thought to be important for bonding at birth and oxytocin levelse are known to be increased in the brain when we fall in love.


The thyroid gland can have an effect upon fertility; and lower than normal thyroid hormone levels (hypothyroid) cause infertility in both men and women. Indeed, auto-antibodies to the thyroid are used to predict which women are at risk from miscarriage.
Estrogen acutely inhibits the rate of thyroid hormone release in adults.
Women with mild hypothyroidism have prolonged and heavy menstrual bleeding with a shorter menstrual cycle.

At any given time, two major structures, each about 1cm in diameter, can be seen within the ovary – the follicle and the corpus luteum.
Each follicle contains an egg surrounded by granulosa cells or ‘nurse cells’. During the menstrual cycle the follicle becomes filled with follicular fluid and looks like a small cyst, about one centimetre in diameter. The granulosa cells of the follicle secrete the steroid hormone estrogen; the corpus luteum produces the hormone progesterone.

Estrogen has several roles:

1. It stimulates the endometrium to grow from day 1 to 14 of the cycle and replace the endometrial cells that were shed during menstruation. It is produced in the follicle of the ovary and in fat cells, and by the adrenal glands.
2. It enhances the contractions of the uterus and is required during the birthing process.
3. Too much estrogen acts as an abortant. Too much produced very early in the pregnancy and not balanced by sufficient progesterone from the corpus lutem could trigger the loss of the pregnancy, as it is an abortive in high doses.
4. It increases the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain, improving mood and memory. If estrogen is out of balance, it can trigger mood swings.
5. It is synthesized in the ovary from cholesterol, and secreted from the granulosa cells inside the follicles, the corpus lutem and the placenta.
6. It causes the liver to produce hormones.
7. It increases cholesterol production, produces weight gain and determines fat distribution.
8. It causes cell proliferation.
9. It deposits calcium into bones.
10. When its levels are high, women show greater verbal fluency.
11. When its levels are low, women use their hands more skillfully, and spatial ability is stronger.
12. Excess estrogen may increase the level of antithrombin III, which increases the risk of blood clots.
13. Normal levels in the follicular phase are 30-150ng/ml. In menopause, levels are 40-200ng/ml.

Progesterone, on the other hand, has different roles from estrogen:

1. Stimulate the endometrium to become nutrient-rich in preparation for a pregnancy, from day 14 to 28 of the cycle.
2. Enhance relaxation of the uterus and prevent contractions of the uterine smooth muscle to prevent miscarriages.
3. Inhibit estrogen from stimulating contraction of the uterus, maintain a pregnancy and prevent further ovulation.
4. Reduce the effect of the immune system to prevent the body from rejecting the embryo.
5. Raise the basal metabolic rate.
6. As a thermogenic, adjust body temperature, which rises from 97.8 degrees C to 98.3 degrees C just before ovulation.
7. It is synthesized from cholesterol in the corpus luteum and in the placenta from months three to nine during pregnancy.
The follicle granulosa cells produce estrogen from day 1 to day 14 of the cycle; then the corpus luteum produces progesterone from day 15 to day 28 of the cycle. As these steroid hormones are both oil-based, the health of these hormones depends upon the quality of oils you eat. Both are synthesized from cholesterol.

Androgens play a role in fertility:

1. They are precursors to estrogen and come from the ovary and adrenal glands.
2. Testosterone is the male hormone produced in the testes, ovaries and adrenals. In women, excess may be produced if insulin levels are too high.
3. In women, testosterone levels are normally 35-50ng/ml. It is felt that there is a slight urge at the time of ovulation that increases the sex drive.

The uterus or womb is a little smaller than a woman’s clenched fist, but during pregnancy, it can expand to over 45cm (18in) in length.
It consists of a well-developed muscular wall (the myometrium) and an inner mucus-like membrane (the endometrium). The smooth muscle wall of the myometrium expel the baby during the birthing process, and it is the contractions of these muscles that also cause menstrual cramps. These muscles require a balance of calcium and magnesium to help them function correctly. Calcium tenses muscles while magnesium allows them to relax. Magnesium-rich foods should be eaten when muscular cramps are a problem.
The uterus retains its full capacity to sustain implantation for up to 60 years of age.
It clearly does not age in the same way as the ovary, as post-
menopausal women can maintain a pregnancy after egg donation. “The uterus is the main site for the production of the hormone prostacycin, which protects women from heart disease and unwanted blood clotting.
Since prostacyclin cannot be synthetically made in a laboratory, the removal of the uterus will ensure its production will cease forever.”
(Dr. Susan Love’s Hormone Book, p 173).

The endometrium is…an important endocrine gland and secretes a family of hormones called prostaglandins (PG). Prostaglandin F (PGF) can stimulate strong uterine contractions (cramps) and prostaglandin E (PGE) can cause pain. These prostaglandins are the hormones directly
responsible for most of the cramps and pain associated with endometriosis and menstruation.
PGF also inhibits the development of the corpus lutem in the ovary and therefore reduces progesterone production. Therefore PGF has been used clinically to initiate abortions. If higher levels than normal of PGF are produced, miscarriages may occur.
As an endocrine gland, the endometrium is very responsive to the levels of hormones circulating in the blood. The balance of estrogen and progesterone greatly affects the growth and activity of the endometrium.

The pituitary and ovaries communicate with each other by sending ‘chemical messengers’ (hormones) through the blood system to tell each other what to do and when. Light hitting the retina of the eye stimulates
the pituitary and hypothalamus, which releases GnRH, a hormone that triggers the release of LH from the pituitary. The LH surge causes the follicle membrane to rupture, releasing the egg.
Ovulation occurs if the ovum meets a sperm in the Fallopian tube, and the follicle seals up to form a corpus luteum. This begins to produce progesterone to make the endometrium ready for implantation of the fertilized egg. Progesterone is produced by the corpus luteum until the third month of pregnancy; when the placenta is sufficiently mature to take over. If no fertilized embryo is implanted, the corpus luteum is reabsorbed into the ovary and the whole process begins all over again.
Establishing the correct levels of these hormones is the key to getting the right message to the right place at the right time. When we say that the hormones are ‘out of balance’, the wrong messages are being sent and received, and things can begin to go awry.

1. FSH is responsible for maturation of the ova in the follicle.
2. FSH production is inhibited by excess estrogen and inhibin.

1. LH secretion precedes ovulation and completes the maturation of the ovarian follicle.
2. LH stimulates androgen (testosterone) production.
3. LH is inhibited by estrogen except just before ovulation, when it surges.
4. Progesterone may block LH secretion as it decreases the rate at which LH is pulsed from the pituitary gland.
5. LH receptors inside the granulosa cells develop as a result of FSH and estrogen build up.
6. When LH surges, the dominant follicle grows between 1.4 – 2.2mm per day, reaching a maximum diameter of 18 – 22cm, and is ready for ovulation. It should be fully mature on day 14 – 16 of the menstrual cycle.
7. The interval between the LH surge and ovulation is 37 – 38 hours. Ovulation occurs randomly from left to right ovaries during natural cycles.
8. The Fallopian tubes enlarge at ovulation and secrete fluids as they respond to estrogen and the LH surge.

1. This hormone inhibits ovulation.
2. Elevated prolactin can also be caused by high melatonin levels, resulting in decreased fertility (melatonin from the pineal gland increases when the eye registers darkness).
3. Excess prolactin can be caused by drugs such as tranquilizers, anti-ulcer drugs, high-dose estrogen oral contraceptive pills, alcohol and street drugs.
4. Hypothyroidism and breast stimulation may also increase prolactin levels.
5. When prolactin is high, GnRH and LH are lowered. This can cause menstruation and ovulation to stop.

Other notes:

Studies show that Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine 5 phosphate) is necessary for the formation of the hormone progesterone and the same source indicates that vitamin B6 is also required after ovulation when the body has a high level of estrogen. B6 acts as a natural diuretic and helps alleviate some of the bloating associated with PMS. It is a precursor to progesterone.
Moreover, the action of the steroid hormones is balanced by B6 – it has an effect on endocrine diseases.

Women often accept a very heavy menstrual flow as the norm because that is what they have come to expect. Dr Casmir Funk, the man who isolated vitamin B1 in 1912, described the effect of vitamin B-complex in reducing a woman’s menstrual flow from five or six days to three or four days.

Large blood clots may be prevented when vitamins C and E are used together with evening primrose and fish oils as these all have estrogenic properties, and certain estrogens produce changes in blood clotting.

The amount of blood lost is usually about 60ml (2 fl oz). At the beginning of the menstrual cycle, rich red blood should be the norm, whereas brown granular blood with chopped-liver-like clots implies poor nutrient uptake.
The nutrients used to improve periods include iron EAP2, vitamin B6, B-complex vitamins, magnesium, chromium, vitamins C and E, and evening primrose and fish oils. If blood loss is excessive to the point of flooding, then a well-absorbed iron supplement such as EAP2 or citrate may be used
for 1-2 months to normalize the flow.

After reading all that stuff, I don’t feel so depressed anymore.
I will try to maintain a better vitamin regimen again, but due to my natural depressive nature, I’m still terrified to take estrogen pills to try to fix the endometriosis, as a side effect to the pills for me is severe depression and flaring temper the likes few have seen in me.
I was fascinated reading all about the LH hormone, and I wish I could only make that hormone instead of estrogen. ;)

I have learned to hate progesterone already, and it’s also not fair that I can’t get rid of my uterus completely without having to go on hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

Lastly, I find it truly funny that a hormone is called PGE and that it causes lots of pain. I know of a corporate entity by the same name which has caused lots of people great pain.

That’s all for now.

Continuing stupidity at the doctor’s office

Date: Tue Mar 18 09:23:15 PST 2003
Location: home
Music: Concrete Blonde – Mexican Moon (drowning out the dogs barking next door)
Mood: crappy

The anitbiotics (cephalexin) that I was on for two weeks DIDN’T DO SHIT.
For the bump anyway.
The only thing they did was give me a southern hemisphere infection.

This past weekend, the bump grew larger and more painful again.
Last week it had come to a head and a pinhole opened up to drain very
slightly, but then it closed again. One side of the bump grew red, infected
and hardened. The other side of the bump was soft and gooey – probably filled
with pus inside. But it never popped as it were.
Also over the weekend, the bump separated and grew into a second bump up
into my breast, which of course added to the pain.

I called my doctor yesterday and was told they’re working on my referral
and that they’d call me back. They never did.
Last night, the bump that had separated and grew into a second bump up
into my breast got larger. I got home and took a Tylenol 3 after hours
of whimpering and barely being able to move without grating pain at work.

This morning I called the doctor again.

“What can I do for you?” said the doctor assistant.

“Um, you guys never called me back yesterday”, I said.

“What did you need?” asked the assistant.

[SIGH] “The bump grew larger over the weekend. The antibiotics never
helped. I’m on Tylenol 3 for the pain. I need to speak to the doctor”,
I said impatiently.

“Hold on, I’ll be right back”, said the doctor assistant.

[a minute later]

“What’s your phone number?” asked the assistant.

[gave phone number]

“So, what do you want then? What action do you want to take?”,
asked the assistant.

[SIGH] “I want to speak to the doctor.”

“Ok, I’ll have her call you back.”

And that was that.


Now, I could just go into the office, but it’s another $10 office fee
and at least an hour wait, and I’m at my wits end. I swear, I’m about
to perform surgery on myself.

Catching up now from last Friday…
My bf and I drove up to Tahoe in a rented Chevy Impala to go see my
dad and his wife, and also to see the Illustrious Zerby.

We had a great weekend hanging out with everyone. On Saturday, my dad,
his wife, my bf and I piled into their SUV and drove around the entire
Lake Tahoe after a failed attempt at hiking down to Vikingsholm.
On top of Vikingsholm being closed to tours for the winter, a storm blew
in the moment we got to the parking lot at the top of the mountain above
Vikingsholm, pelting us with hail, snow and 50MPH winds.
We got back into the car and drove about a mile down the road and *POOF*
it was sunny and not snowing.

That day, South Lake Tahoe in the hills and mountains got at least six
inches of snow, while at town level there was sun and some wind.

We checked out Sierra at Tahoe ski area after our drive around the lake
and that’s how we found out about the snow levels.

Saturday night is when my bf and I hung out with Zerby, his gf Shani,
and Shani’s two kids, Dana and Wesley, who are about 7 and 5 respectively
if I remember correctly. Those two kids are so cute and well behaved and
soft-spoken like their mom!
We all went to the casinos and hunted out the arcades.

Well, now I know where the entire population of Tahoe’s children, as well
as all the spawn who are dragged along from all over the world by their
gambling parents, end up on the weekends… in the arcades of the casinos.
And as young as ten, the kids are cruising for boyfriends and girlfriends.

Despite that, we had a pretty good time in the arcades. I didn’t see anything
I wanted to play, but I thoroughly enjoyed watching Zerby not only kick a
teenage boy’s ass at Dance Dance Revolution (DDR, which I’d rather not say
cuz it reminds me of Eastern Bloc), but I stood back and watched the crowd
that formed around Zerby as he pounded on the damned game and spun around
and kept his footing and generally pissed off the teens who thought he was
just an old man (we’re all old people after age 19).

I used most of my coins to power race car driver games and children’s
arcade games for Dana and Wesley, and I instinctively took over as their
babysitter and didn’t mind. Shani thanked me for it several times, smiling
and saying she got to play a couple of games herself as a result.

Too bad I didn’t have my camera on me – Wesley played on the motorcycle
arcade game and Zerby held onto the back of the bike to move it back and
forth to help steer for Wes, who crouched down and really got into it!
And he’s only five! So cute.

On Sunday, my bf, my dad and his wife all returned to Sierra at Tahoe ski
area, where we split up to go snow tubing while my dad and his wife prepared
to go skiing. My dad’s wife had this awesome snow suit on – it looked like
a NASA flight suit, only grey. Pretty cool.

My bf and I got about three or four good runs in down the hill on our
tubes before the storm rolled in, and we realized it was time to start
heading home.
My dad and his wife never got any skiing in, citing how pricey and sucky
Sierra at Tahoe was compared to Heavenly, where they usually go.
Plus, the visibility dwindled so fast, they’d have gotten on the chair lift
and it would have been futile.

So we said our goodbyes until next year, and dad followed us out of Sierra
at Tahoe. He turned right towards South Lake and we turned left towards
I was kinda saddened. I had wanted to get trapped in Tahoe by the snow
to avoid having to come back to the pitiful job I have, which will be
gone by June or July.
And I always get a bit teary eyed when I part ways from my dad. He’s
getting older every year – this year I noticed he has no brown or red in
his hair on his head anymore. It’s all grey, and the lines in his face
are getting deeper. His hands and arms are still furry Scotsman red and
freckely though. And his wife takes good care of him, so I know I don’t
need to worry. It’s just the realization that my parents are going to
die on me, that hits me every time I see them now. You don’t think about
that when you’re a teenager. You start seeing it in your late 20’s to
early 30’s.
It was especially painful when I went to Michigan in 2001 to see my mom,
and the skin on her body was so thin…when I kissed her cheek it was
like kissing my grandma. Because my mom doesn’t take care of herself
and smokes a pack a day and never goes to the doctor for routine checkups.
Whereas my dad quit smoking and gets a physical *twice* a year and takes
all his heart and stress meds and leads an active athletic life by
downhill skiing, roller blading and walking.

I take after my dad usually.

But this lump under my breast has me feeling more like my mom for the
last few weeks.


George paid me a visit today. So now I’m all achy inside. I’m hungry and I don’t want salami or Tuna or cookies or doughnuts or ham, so I guess I starve.

Dear Diary,

My crotch has been smelling like Body odor real bad lately and it feels like George is paying me a visit but he ain’t. it’s just liquid. I was supposed to start a week ago. Nobody else except me has noticed the smell. I feel so dirty. I’m gonna take a shower now. It got up to 65°F today and it’s 6:35pm and I’m still hungry. And nervous. Bye for now.

Dear Diary,

SHIT! George paid me a visit. It looks like red marker ink though.
…I’m sorta constipated.
…I just wrote it in on my calendar. I was a whole 2 weeks off on guessing. Wow.

Well, I’m gonna go now. George is giving me long lasting, mild cramps, as usual and I gotta take a shower.
It’s 10:30pm exactly (on my Heart clock).

Dear Diary,

Hi. George kicked me in the stomach all day today. I felt like I wet my pants and decided not to do anything about it. Painful and Heavy. I took midol and Tylenol, but it didn’t help.
Oh, today mom went to the store and she bought me some overnight pads for George. They’re HUGE! I’m wearing one right now and it’s uncomfortable. George is still kicking me in the stomach.

Dear Diary,

George paid me a visit while I was babysitting today. I knew it on the way home from Checkers because right below my stomach felt funny and I had to go to the bathroom again. I took Brad and Phil to Checkers today because they begged me (They do every day). Thank God I’m done babysitting for the weekend. Today it was so sticky, hot and humid I thought I’d die. I had a big headache, too. I was so glad when I got home to air conditioning and my mom.
Well, I’m gonna go. George is making me uncomfortable under my stomach.
Bye, goodnight.

P.S. In case you can’t figure out who George is, he’s my period.

Why “George”?
That’s the name my friend’s sister gave her period in high school so she could talk about it with her friends without other students knowing what she was really talking about. I looked it up on the net and it seems that “George” was common girl codespeak dating to the 1970’s.
By the time my friend got to high school in the 1980’s, she shared her sister’s code word with me and the rest of our friends, and thus the tradition was carried on.

Dear Diary,

Today I started my period at Jenny’s house. I had to tell her cause I needed a pad. I didn’t exactly ask for one – she asked me if I needed one and she showed me where they were.

When I was younger, I had a heart murmur that worried the doctors. So whenever I had to go to the orthodontist to get my braces worked on, I had to take antibiotics before the visit, to remove the possibility of bacteria entering my bloodstream through my mouth.

In this journal entry, I’m not sure if I was referring to myself throwing up from period pain or from the pre-medication antibiotics for my next dental appointment, because my period was happening around this time, too.

Dear Diary,

Mr. Abdo (the principal) gave us all a speech on how he wants to make this prison a better place. Here’s some of the things he mentioned:

  1. “No kissing or hugging in the halls or you get reported to the office.” I suppose we’re supposed to knife each other instead!
  2. “Don’t wear coats, gloves, jackets, sunglasses, gloves, scarfs, etc to class.” Okay, but why don’t you try turning on the heat!!!
  3. “No more going to the bathroom ever, unless you have a pass!” What if I throw up again?? What if my teacher won’t let me go and I leave anyway??

I swear, this school is a prison. I mean, even the teachers complain! We have special names like if you skip some of your classes you’re A.W.O.L! Yeah, and if you get a couple days off or a vacation, you’re on Parol!! Yeah!

Well, I gotta go now. There’s about 2 minutes to the bell.

I might write 4th hour.


March 12, 1987