In August of 2012, my husband and I decided that we were ready to start a family. We had just purchased our first home, plus we’d been together 7 years and married for 2 years at the time, and we were ready! Shortly after getting off birth control I noticed that my body was changing and I didn’t feel like myself. The first major change I noticed was my menstrual cycles were starting to come further and further apart. I was experiencing fatigue, acne, strong sugar cravings, bloated stomach, brain fog, amenorrhea (absence of menstruation), and weight gain. I initially thought my thyroid medication needed to be adjusted, as I had been living with and being treated for hypothyroidism since 2009. I started looking up my symptoms and I had a gut feeling that I may have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, but I chose to turn a blind eye. I was upset and angry with my body. I fell into depression about it by the end of the year, I felt so hopeless.
In 2013, I was blessed with a promotion on my job and my husband had recently found a new job he loved too. However, everything was being overshadowed by this burden I was carrying. I decided in May of 2013 that enough was enough and I needed to get checked out. At this point I had not had a menstrual cycle in over 5 months. I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome at that appointment. I was given progesterone to trigger my menstrual cycle to come back, and I was given Metformin to help manage my symptoms. Despite being on Metformin, I still felt horrible. I spent a lot of time and resources that year seeing specialists to figure out how to deal with my diagnosis with PCOS.
Overtime, my work became my escape from my reality. This went on for months. I was so scared that I was going to be in this place forever. I was very frightened that I was never going to be able to have children, because of PCOS. I was in a place of despair. Besides my husband and few close friends and family, I dealt with my diagnosis in silence. I felt so alone. I felt ashamed. I felt I had no support from my medical providers and everyone around me had no clue what PCOS even was. I was not sure what that outcome was going to be, and that crushed my spirit.
It wasn’t until December that my life changed forever. December of 2013 Christina gathered myself and all our line sisters together to let us know about her diagnosis with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Cancer. It was such a hard blow to all of us. The one thing I’ll never forget was Christina’s positive spirit, and her will to LIVE and beat this giant she was facing! She said something that night that changed my entire perspective on life and living with my disease. She said something to the effect of, “This battle I’m fighting isn’t for me, it is for someone else. I’m just the vessel.” Her words replayed over and over again in my mind for days, and that’s when I decided I wanted to LIVE too! I was finally moving towards a place of acceptance.