Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome & Me

It’s Septemeber and you know what that means? FALL. Sweaters, Halloween decorations, leaves, cozy candles, and boots are creeping their way in. Along with fall, September also rings in Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) Awareness Month, as well as Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. Something I didn’t even realize had a month of its own until not too long ago. Some of you may then be thinking, what is PCOS and why should it have its own awareness month? That’s why. Not that many people know about it yet it affects 1 in 10 women…including me! So, what is it?

The exact cause is unknown, but it is considered a hormonal problem. Genetics and environmental factors are believed to be involved in the development of PCOS. It is a leading cause of female infertility and is responsible for a number of symptoms that can affect the body physically and emotionally.

Still confused? Don’t worry, so am I! Basically, PCOS is a hormonal disorder that is linked to a wide variety of symptoms from irregular periods and weight gain to infertility and severe anxiety and depression. The symptoms appear differently and in various severities in everyone affected. For me, it started with my period going MIA for no reason. When I went to the doctor and they asked when my last period was and I said “six months ago” they immediately raised a concern and said I needed to visit an OBGYN.

So, off to the OBGYN, I went. We discussed the fact that I hadn’t had a period for quite some time, talked about some other symptoms, and without even having test results, my OBGYN said she was 99% sure that I had PCOS. We did some blood work to check hormone and insulin levels and I was prescribed birth control to hopefully bring my period out of hiding. Turns out, my insulin resistance levels were sky high, so they also started me on Metformin (a typical medicine used for diabetes) to help those numbers get down. There also had to be some real discussions about fertility. At 18 years old, I was told that I likely won’t be able to have children passed the age of 30 and will likely need medical assistance in order to conceive. Fertility wasn’t really a concern in my life at that point, but now it has to be and is always on my mind. I know there are many other options and that God will give me the gift of children when/if I am meant to have it, but it’s still something that is always in the back of my mind.

I think what bothers me the most about PCOS is the fact that even though it affects 1 in 10 women, hardly anyone knows about it. There also is no for sure known cause or cure. Is it manageable, yes? I’m thankful for that. I do hope that there comes a day where there is a cure. That can’t be achieved with more awareness, funding, and research. If you feel so inclined, you can visit https://www.pcosaa.org/ for more info or donate.

I am a part of the 1 in 10 with PCOS.

❤ / Bailey

ULTRASOUNDS, LONG-DISTANCE, & FLORIDA (LIFE UPDATE)

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Well hey there, long time no type….yeah I guess that sounds okay. HELLO! It’s been a hot minute since I’ve sat down and fully processed what’s been going on in my life recently and the best way I know how to do that is via blogging, so here I am. What’re the haps? I’m giving you the 411. Warning: this is going to be pretty random as my brain is tired & sometimes it’s just a good thing to not edit out your weirdness! Plus my internal dialogue is extra loud today and if I don’t let it out who knows what I may blurt out in person. No one wants that.

ORLANDO – Currently, I am sitting in a hotel room in Orlando, FL after just taking a Philosophy test that I was completely unprepared for but I did well so no worries. No, this is not a Spring Break Trip, Spring Break is actually next week but my professors kindly let me skip classes this week in order to attend the Exponential church planting conference. It’s been an amazing experience so far. I am learning a lot, questioning my life choices (in a good thinking about the future way) and getting to know people better which is my all-time favorite activity.  Plus, Florida holds a near and dear spot in my heart (particularly Universal Studios & Disney) so I am very happy to be here.

ULTRASOUND – Two weeks ago today I did something that was rather scary and finally went in for the ultrasound that I rescheduled from October (oops). My OBGYN had said she was 99.9% sure I had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, and after struggles with different medications and just wanting to know I had an ultrasound to get a clear picture. First of all, no one told me how much ultrasounds suck. They look all fun and dandy in movies with the gel and just rubbing your stomach, but it is a lie! You have to have a full bladder for the procedure. That means I had to drink 32 fl oz of water and not pee an hour before my appointment. Then, the tech proceeds to push down on your bladder repeatedly in order to take images of the ovaries and what-not to the point where I was concerned I was going to pee on the exam table. It was not enjoyable, but it needed to be done.

I MISS MY BEST FRIENDS – Remeber when I wrote a post in January about maintaining intentional friendships? Well, it’s really hard to do that when one of your best friends is across the country in Montana and another is across the globe in Australia. I’m really proud of Sarah for chasing her dreams & having the adventure of a lifetime across the world, but I do miss having my bestie gal close by. The other person I’m closest to (outside of family) is Preston who currently lives across the country in Montana. We have known each other since middle school, but in August of 2016, we reconnected and don’t go a single day without texting each other. As much as I love our daily conversations, it is really hard with him being so far away. Consider me old fashioned but I value face-to-face connections and time spent. He & his family are actually in the process of moving back to Johnson City, which I am THRILLED about, but are having trouble getting their house sold. With both of my closest friends being not nearby & not seeing my CC gals much anymore there’s been a growing hole in my heart. I know they’ll be back soon but I need help in trusting in God during the waiting.

GRADUATION?! – Um, yeah I made a graduation plan the other day. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read an email from my advisor saying it was time to do that. We talked about all the classes I need to take, when to take which classes, and talked about a possible internship opportunity in Washington D.C. It all made me feel really excited to join the “real-world” but also get smacked in the face with the nostalgia of where the time has gone. I’m still trying to decide what I’m going to do post-graduation but I have until December 2019 to figure that one out.

There’s a mini life update for you. It’s very random but I’m tired and needed to get some things off my head. I hope you all are doing well & remember how loved you are.

xx,

Bailey