This is a long, personal, TMI kind of post... just to warn you.
Before I had kids, I think I was an extremely normal person in the hormone department. I had a freakishly exact 28 day cycle and no PMS. No cramps, no real crankiness, nothing to indicate it was almost that time of the month other than the calendar.
Now... I spend a week thinking I need to go check myself into a mental institution before my period starts. And then it's like someone flips a switch and I'm back to normal again. I'm in a complete brain fog and my mood swings are epic. I just want to crawl in bed and thinking about doing housework and sometimes even crocheting or sewing makes me want to just cry. Aside from fatigue, physically I'm fine... I still rarely have cramps, but I do feel like crawling under my desk for a nap more than usual.
I'm not saying that I'm completely emotionally stable the other days of the month. I am prone to depression and refuse to medicate myself, but I never really noticed a pattern like I have the past few years.
When I was pregnant with Zoe, I knew right away that I would be having a c-section. Olivia was taken by emergency c-section and my doctor felt Isabelle would be too big to attempt a VBAC, and after 2 c-sections, it was just not possible to convince my doctor otherwise. I also knew that I would have a tubal, and it's just normal for them to do the tubal right there after they take the baby.
At some point while I was pregnant, I ran across something about Post-Tubal Ligation Syndrome. My reaction was rolling my eyes and saying "whatever." I blew it off as just people trying to scare women out of having a tubal.
So, everything went as planned. Zoe was born and I had the bizarre experience of getting to listen to a student doctor learn to perform a tubal ligation using my body parts. It ranks right up there with having my wisdom teeth removed without general anesthesia that I would strongly advise anyone against. If you're going to have a tubal, don't go to a teaching hospital unless you're getting knocked out. Hearing "Now, let's see if you can do this side without removing the uterus" just about had me jumping off of the table. It was probably good I had no control over the lower half of my body.
Now, when they do a tubal after a c-section, they don't just clamp them off like they sometimes do when it's done later on. Since you're already cut open, part of your fallopian tubes are removed and the ends cauterized. It's far less likely that it would ever fail and I could get pregnant. I do know someone who got pregnant after a tubal... but she was just clamped.
My first GYN appointment, a year after having Zoe, I was on antidepressants. I had asked for them because I caught myself screaming like a total maniac at my kids and it scared the hell out of me. And they seemed to work fine.... except for that one week a month before my period. I talked to my GYN, thinking maybe I had PMDD (which I also used to roll my eyes at and say "whatever...") or something. She just told me to have my primary doctor increase my meds.
I was frustrated about that. I was fine the majority of the month, it was just that certain premenstrual time that I would feel like that. But she brushed me off and I got pissed. In fact, I haven't been back to the GYN since. Yes, I know... I am supposed to go every year and it's been 2, going on 3 years. I'm not going to even try to make excuses. I know I need to go and I will. Since I told myself to get over it, I just never think about it when I can actually call to make an appointment.
I was sitting here at the computer earlier, really frustrated over how I have felt this week. I feel great one minute, almost obnoxiously happy, then slam down and just want to crawl in bed. I feel like my brain is just mud. I don't want to do anything one minute, the next I can't sit down. For some reason I remembered PTLS and decided to go see what exactly it is. I looked over the list of symptoms and I could claim 8 of 13. Granted... a couple of them are also symptoms of diabetes, but it still has my curiosity stoked.
I know that your body changes a lot after you have kids. I also know that, for some reason, women like to sweep things like this under the rug and this could be much more common than I know. Hell, when I had post-partum depression after having Olivia, I thought there was something terribly wrong with me because no one ever warned me that I might actually feel like that. We just don't talk about the ugly stuff, when we really should. So maybe this isn't uncommon. Maybe you feel exactly like I do and you didn't have your tubes tied.
I'm not saying that IS my problem, just that I'm starting to really understand that there has to be a reason for this. And even if I want to pursue the idea of PTLS, many GYNs don't even recognize it as a real disorder (they roll their eyes and say "whatever..." just like I did) so I certainly don't think I'll go to see the doctor armed with reams of paper about it. I grew up watching my mother struggle to get a diagnosis for her MS and I'm not prepared for the things she went through to get there, which included a stay on the psychiatric ward of the hospital before she finally found doctors to listen to her. At least I've gotten to the point of thinking I should get myself back to the doctor. See if they can check my hormones or something.
I'm tired of trading in my superhero cape for a straight jacket. I have way too much going on.
Like I said... long, rambling, TMI. Mostly to just empty out my brain, but maybe it will help someone else.