I’ve been gaining weight and had low energy for months now, and kept meaning to call the doctor but was too busy and too tired to get around to it. Also in January I’d stopped getting regular exercise, but have felt too tired to start again. Also I always dread doctor visits since they nearly always involve bad news and some new treatment. Anyway, I finally talked myself into calling my doctor’s office on Wednesday. First I was told he couldn’t see me until April 21st (oh the joy of having a popular doctor) but when I said I just needed labs done, they found a way to squeeze in a short appointment for me sooner. I had my blood drawn yesterday to check three things: blood sugar/insulin (because I have PCOS) thyroid levels (I used to have a too-fast thyroid but it burned itself out and I take synthetic thyroid now) and iron, because my monthly cycle is . . . I can’t find a nice euphemism, so I’ll just say it’s practically a monthly hemorrhage. (I couldn’t have spelled hemorrhage without the help of a spell checker, could you?)
This morning I saw my doctor and got the results. Insulin: good. Thyroid levels: good. Iron levels: terrible. The lowest they’ve been since 2008 when I started seeing my doctor, and low enough for an anemia diagnosis.
The good thing is that my doctor will send me for IV iron therapy at a local cancer clinic, and after four shots over the next month I should be feeling much, much better. I don’t love shots, but it’s a much quicker and easier way to get the iron into my system than by trying to ingest it and dealing with digestion or malabsorption problems.
The less good thing is that to stop the heavy bleeding I’ll need to go on birth control or get a Mirena IUD, which will mean my nursing of Hazel will probably end because my milk will dry up. I’m mostly okay with weaning her, since I did get to nurse her for a year, and since she’s already down to nursing just a couple of times a day for a few minutes. But I just looked up Mirena side effects and found many women saying that it made them feel bloated and get acne and gain lots of weight. OH GREAT JUST WHAT I NEED. Also in rare instances it can have a negative effect on fertility, and I’m not absolutivamalutely sure I’m ready to be done having babies. So, part of me wishes I could just get my doctor to send me in for a monthly iron shot–but on the other hand, not having a monthly hemorrhage sounds even better. But gaining weight does not.
I guess a Tweet version of the above would sound something like this: “I’m looking for a slim childless nineteen-year-old to trade bodies with me. I get to keep my five kids. #Delusional”
Those five kids who ruined my health getting them born? Absolutivamalutely worth it.