It's been a while since I've updated. I've been sick. I was lucky that I had Thanksgiving Break off, and the last two weeks have been... not fun. Incredibly not fun. (warning, there is gross stuff.)
About two months ago, I switched my birth control to Depo. I'm officially done with that! I have, in my past, always had really really bad migraines that come with my cycle. Like.. debilitatingly bad, lay in bed with no lights on and stop existing for the day bad migraines. Sometime in February, they took me off of my estrogen based pills because of fear of blood clots, so I hadn't been on anything for a while. Cue migraines.
In October, I contacted my doctor to see if there was an alternative, so I wouldn't have to worry about the migraines. Depo was suggested. I thought.. 1 shot every three months, and no more periods and no more migraines. Sign me up! I wasn't planning on having kids anyway. So, there I was, October 7th, peeing into a cup and getting a shot. This was going to solve everything, right?
November 18th, I start having back cramps. I know it's coming. I expect my normal cycle.. 2-3 days. Friday, the 19th, not bad, kinda normal. A bit crampy and headachy, but I make it through the day. We have a week off, I can make it through one day of school.
It really really hit on the 21st, that something might be a little bit... off. Really bad cramps throughout my whole body, mostly centered in my back and abdomen. I start passing little clots of blood, and going through a pad an hour or so. Ok, maybe this is just heavy because it's the last one for a while. I make it through Thanksgiving with a few really bad cramps (AM has been amazing in holding my hand and letting me squeeze until his fingers hurt). I can do this.
I rest on Friday and Saturday, do my normal lesson planning on Sunday. We're going into the last three weeks of school. I'm excited. I have really great plans for the last few weeks. We're going to focus on audience for writing, and we're going to be amazing. I go to school on Monday, and while I don't move around the classroom much, there is movement involved in teaching and being at school in general (the bathrooms are not ten feet away like they are at home), and I learn the more I move the worse it gets. I bleed through everything. It's awful. I called the nurse line, they tell me to call if it gets worse. They schedule another Depo shot for Wednesday morning. I take Tuesday off, and the clots are getting worse.. like.. dime sized. (SOOO GROSS... but still not as bad as it's going to get.)
By Wednesday, I'm resting and things seem to be going okay. I think I can make it back to school, so I decide to go in on Thursday. Thursdays are minimum days. Surely I can make it through one minimum day. I miss my students!
Thursday reminded me of how much I love teaching and how much I love my students. We had a fun day talking about dialects, learning some new vocabulary. My fourth period class was quite lively as we discussed regionalisms in dialect and dialogue. But all of that moving around reminded me of why I shouldn't have moved around.
Thursday night and it all gets worse. The cramping, the clotting. They've gone from dimes to quarters. Every time I move, I can feel something falling out of me. I hold out hope that I can make it on Monday to school, but when I end up in the bathroom Sunday night literally passing chunks of my endometrial lining in a way that I can feel them sliding out of me. I wake up and can feel them lodged in my vagina, waiting to be pushed out. (I warned you, it's gross)- I know I'm not going to make it.
I call in Monday, call the doctor's office and get an actual physical appointment for Monday afternoon. I finally get to see a real doctor. I talk to him, and now it's suddenly urgent. They do a(n incredibly painful) endometrial biopsy and I have to get tested for iron deficiency, and they send me to the pharmacy for new hormones and an iron supplement. I hate sitting in the Kaiser pharmacy. Test results pushed through fast and I'm anemic, though not bad enough that I have to go and get a transfusion. Other numbers are off as well. I am told to take the rest of the week off and rest.
Now it's Sunday. I plan on going back to school tomorrow, but not moving much. Because of the weakness and the tiredness, I haven't done much grading or school work, and we only have a week left of the semester. I'm probably going to be grading and lesson planning through break, but when life throws wrenches at you, you have to find alternate means, I guess. Because of the anemia, I wear out fast and have been eating a lot of beef - steak, triple cheeseburgers, beef tamales, beef tacos. I should probably add some more vegetables to that, and AM has been great making sure I get squash and zucchini and lots of vitamins.
The results so far: it's been 24 days. I'm still bleeding, but not hemorrhaging anymore. I'm on at least three new medications for the foreseeable future, and I have a week left with this set of kids. I am going to be at school for this entire week. I know I can do this. I may move a little slower, and take a little more time, but I want to be there for my students. I miss them, and this is my last week with this batch.
I started off this school year with two weeks out for COVID and end the term with two weeks out for anemia. This has not been a healthy semester. Here's hoping to a much healthier 2023.