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IUD Part 1

From my experience, the solution to everything was birth control according to every doctor I ever spoke to growing up before they even looked deeper into what was going on with me. I never liked the side effects of possibly being in a dark hole of depression or having severe mood swings like I saw a lot of my friends experience so, I never chose to take it. Now though, depending on the severity of endometriosis, birth control may be something that’s more of a necessity. My case is one of those according to my gynecologist which I’m going to call Dr. U.

I decided not to do any kind of birth control for a few months after my surgery for many reasons. One, I felt overwhelmed because the huge change I had to get used to was challenging. Not to mention all the emotional and mental roller coasters that I went through after surgery. Healing is a huge process and I needed time to think and get to know my body after most of the endometriosis was taken out.

After I achieved what I thought to be impossible, my first pain free period, I spoke to another gynecologist and she convinced me the IUD route was safe, lower risk to me because of my family’s breast cancer history, and it would help me even more on top of all the changes I was already doing in my life. Of course I knew about the horror stories of the IUD, but having to suffer through the pain of endometriosis again and getting surgery terrified me so much I decided to try the IUD.

Holy sh*t. It was f*cking painful. I don’t have children so I’ve never had anything other than period blood go down my cervix. Having something force its way in there was so f*cking painful, I thought I was going to pass out. The nurse in the room gave me a heating pad as if that would help me. I mostly used it as a stress ball. I got extremely nauseous and that nausea stayed with me for the rest of the ride.

I got my IUD on a Tuesday, so that day was a wash. In bed, curled up, slept. The next day sucked too. By the weekend, the pain went down a bit and my spotting was also next to gone.

Monday comes rolling in, I decided to start my morning routine again, yoga, breakfast, work. I wasn’t 100% pain free but I was able to handle the pain without ibuprofen so that was good enough for me to do yoga since it normally helps me. Yoga, done. Breakfast, done.

Suddenly, at around 11am, I got the sharpest, unfamiliar pain I’ve ever felt in my life. It was NOT a normal cramp, it completely disabled me and I had to remember to breathe. After a few minutes of being unable to move, I finally got a grip of myself and got some ibuprofen. I was shaking, nauseous, confused and at that point I was alone. I decided to lay down and let the ibuprofen do it’s work.

My partner came back home and noticed I wasn’t great but I told him it went down slightly. However, a few hours later, it came back again full force. This time my partner decided to call a medical professional to ask for advise. A RN decided to talk to me directly even though at that point I couldn’t talk because not only did I have to remember to breathe but I was crying. When she heard me she told me to go to the ER because it was a red flag with the IUD.

I told her thanks for her time and hung up. I took more ibuprofen and chose not to got to the ER because of all the terrible experiences I’ve had there. Not only would I probably wait there for hours, but I was sure they were going to tell me I was fine. I know I’m a cynic, but that’s just me with ERs. (Please do not do this, I know I’m a hypocrite) The next day my gyn, Dr. U, called and she said she was confused because if it had been inserted wrong I would’ve felt something since I got it done. I told her I did. I’ve always felt a weird jam on my sides that keep interchanging but specifically on my right. She didn’t say anything about that and just said to come see her asap.

That’s the double edge sword about speaking out so soon. I felt if I spoke out too soon she would’ve said to give it more time because my body was adjusting, but now I should’ve spoken out sooner because that’s a sign of something wrong. It’s frustrating. Regardless, I made an appointment for the earliest I could see her, 4 days later.

Dr. U tells me that it sounds like it’s my endometriosis. After all, I chose to go months after the surgery without any birth control so whose to say my endometriosis hasn’t grown already? My endometriosis is severe at the end of the day, it’s probably just that, completely isolated from the IUD.

The words were lost in my brain trying to compute what she just said. She was blaming my endometriosis and the fact that I went months without birth control on this very specific, sharp, not cramp like pain. I lived with severe endometriosis for YEARS. I know what those cramps feel like. Not to mention that my last period was pain free. I’ve been doing so much better every month after my surgery, how could my endometriosis just randomly hurt me? This was just coincidence? On top of that, the pain I felt was so specific I knew with all my being it was related to the IUD if not the IUD itself.

What it felt like to me was her trying to put the blame on me instead of her potentially not putting the IUD correctly in me. I can’t say that’s what it is for certain, but that is what it felt like. She even examined me and when she pushed down on my belly it hurt. So, the next step was doing an ultrasound to try and see if the IUD is fine. Great. The next available time for that is 3 months from now.

How frustrating and how ridiculous. I was fuming. I felt like I made a mistake and now she wasn’t going to take this out until I give her another reason that doesn’t blame her.

I went home and immediately started searching for another gynecologist around my area. After a long search, I found one that also specializes in endometriosis. This doctor was very serious, I almost felt like she was mad at me for being in her presence. I’ll call her Dr. G. G for grumpy. She told me that she thinks that it was me trying to ovulate for the first time with the IUD and since it’s preventing all that and thinning out my uterus, it just freaked out. She also said, I might have a cyst. Immediately, she did an ultrasound and lo and behold, a super tiny, less than 1cm cyst on the side that was hurting and a new fibroid because why not. She recommended me to give this a try for another 8 weeks, and if by then or before then I felt like I couldn’t handle it, then we could talk about a pill that’s specifically for endometriosis that comes with a free dose of a whole lotta side effects.

As of this writing it has been 2 weeks. Last night I had a weird episode again where it started to hurt but then it would immediately start to calm down like a very slow pulse. It was weird but I’ll keep monitoring it. Needless to say, I’m over this.

I would like to end with this: just because we can handle pain doesn’t mean we should go through it. I learned they can numb you down there if you decide to do an IUD. The fact that that wasn’t an option they told me about is beyond me.

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