PCOS—A Never Ending Battle
Dealing with the Endocrine Disorder
I didn’t always have health problems. There wasn’t always a time where I didn’t want to get out of bed, sleep all day, leave my apartment a cluttered and dirty mess, dishes in the sink, laundry piling up, etc. Some days, I would be so full of energy that my apartment would be spotless with not a speck of dirt in sight. Other days, I'd just stay in bed, sleep the day away, and the pain in every inch of my body making it hard to move. My body is a war zone, and I’m losing the battle.
I was a skinny kid when I was younger. When I reached 9-years-old, the weight gain started, along with my love/hate relationship with junk food. I’ve always struggled to make healthy choices when it came to choosing meals and portion sizes. I always overindulged and ate until I couldn’t feel my feet, literally eating myself into a food coma. This trend lasted well into my 30s. I ate what I wanted, when I wanted, with not a care in the world. Diabetes? I would never get that, so what did I care? Eventually, the weight could magically fall off without putting in any of the work, right? I honestly thought I was invincible, that I was immune to doing major damage to my body. From middle school throughout high school, I was a fat kid with oily skin and acne, constantly bullied and with only a few select of friends who accepted me for who I was. At home, food was a comfort for me, it understood me, and didn’t judge me.
After high school, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. I was constantly leaving jobs and around the age of 19, I had a promiscuous stage where I would meet men on the internet and we would become “friends with benefits” for some time. As time went on, I started to realize I was punishing myself for the mistakes I made when I was younger. I was always told that I would never amount to anything and that I would never get a boyfriend. I believed it, and in turn, I thought the only way I would be accepted by a man would be to offer my body. This went on for six hellish years.
The facial hair and missed periods started in my 20s. I found myself constantly shaving my face to hide the unsightly and embarrassing beard that wouldn’t go away. My family didn’t know why their daughter/sister/aunt was growing a beard. Questions were asked constantly. I finally wanted answers. I needed to see an OBGYN, like yesterday. My first appointment went as normal. After the initial examination, came the dreaded words, “You have PCOS.” I was 21. This was back in 2003. What came next out of the doctor’s mouth would haunt me for years, when I asked him about having children, “It’s hard, but not impossible.”
Years went by. I went on with my life. I held jobs here and there. I met my husband in 2007 and we started dating, thus closing out my promiscuous stage for an eternity. Friends would announce their pregnancy or the birth of their children. An everlasting sorrow of “when is it going to be my time?” would hit me. It also added to my depression and anxiety. There were times I would cry for hours because it wasn’t fair. I was basically infertile. My woman parts were broken, I was broken. Would I ever be lucky enough to have children of my own? When and if I got pregnant, would the pregnancy be healthy and would I be able to carry the child to full-term? There’s a high risk of miscarriage in women with PCOS.
I found out, June 2018 that I was full-on diabetic. This was a crushing blow to not only my self-esteem, but it was a wake-up call that I should take my health a lot more seriously. I never thought I would see the day where I would have to check my blood sugar every morning to make sure that it was elevated. I never imagined I would have to take pills the rest of my life to control said blood sugar or take pills that would jump-start my period on months where my body refused to cooperate. I’ve been told that I have an attitude problem; there were times I would be snarky or act pissed off over the smallest of things. I found out that’s also a side effect of PCOS, constant mood swings. Someone would ask me a simple question and my voice would raise without me knowing, making it sound like I was giving attitude when in all truth I wasn’t trying to and was completely unaware of how I sounded.
It’s been 16 years since I was diagnosed with PCOS. It’s been a constant struggle both mentally and physically. I fight with my body daily. I can’t help, but blame myself for this predicament. Maybe if I had eaten healthier when I was younger, I wouldn’t have to deal with this personal hell.