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On April 19, 2013, I took my last birth control pill. This past Saturday marks one year since that day.
The decision wasn’t a whim. In fact, it was something I thought about for almost a year. I did a lot of research into what to expect and what I would do to compensate for not being on the pill. I decided that there was absolutely no reason to be on a medication that was harming my body rather than helping it. I made the decision, waited almost three months for my pill pack to run out, then finally cut myself off from taking synthetic hormones.
If only it was that easy.
I ate clean and followed much of my advice for how to balance hormones. I struggled a lot with my lack of a period or ovulation. I knew what was going on with my body, thanks to charting, but what was going on was a big fat nothing.
Eventually, after six months I got my period and I ovulated the following month. I ovulated the next cycle, too, at about the same time. These two cycles were a bit long, and my luteal phase was a bit short, but they were almost identical. A good sign.
That was in December. (that second ovulation, that is)
Things started normal in January, but my temperatures went haywire mid-cycle when I got back from being abroad. Whether it was the travel, stopping the herbs I was taking, or something else, I don’t know. My period came right around the time it had for the past two cycles, so I assumed it was just stress and my body needed to reset. Things should go back to normal.
That was in February.
I haven’t had a period since. Today is day 66 of this cycle. No temp rise and I haven’t had anything resembling fertile mucus in weeks. And finally last week, I couldn’t take it any more. After a year of being patient. Of trying to take care of my body (minus a really bad fall). After two ovulations. Why am I still broken?
I feel like I’m trying so hard, and I don’t know what to do. I had always planned to write this blog post to talk about where I am one year after stopping birth control. I expected it to be a hopeful tale about cycles returning and encouragement for others who are on a similar journey. Instead, just 3 days shy of my one year anniversary off the pill, I spent the evening crying because my body is broken.
Why do so many women get their cycles back on track immediately? I didn’t even take the pill for that long or and I was on the lowest dose. Why can’t my body heal itself? What more does it need that I haven’t given it?
Seeking the answer.
I tell myself and I tell the women reading my older post about this that patience is the answer. With time and a healthy lifestyle, your body will heal itself. But all the patience in the world isn’t helpful when you feel broken. I have gained a lot of knowledge from Wellness Mama’s post on balancing hormones and naturally reversing infertility. Starting this week I am implementing a cross between an essential oil detox and the cleanse in Cleansing for Conception (all of Donielle’s book are wonderful for this kind of thing). I will be writing more about what I am doing and how this goes for me.
I am not so far gone that I can’t see the humor in my frantic research and application of tips for getting pregnant, when I myself do not want kids for at least 8 years, if ever. Some people may be happy at the thought of not being able to get pregnant for the time being. I just see it as there being something wrong with my body and health that I need to overcome.
But I can be patient. I can strive to increase my health and find joy in the other areas in which I see myself improving. I can be thankful that I am struggling through this now, without the added burden of wanting to become pregnant. I can hope that other women read my story and are comforted if they are also struggling. I can hope my story inspires other women to forgo the pill and the damage it causes. My body was not broken before I began hormonal birth control.
So here I am. One year later. No triumphant story to tell. Yet.
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