PCOS Venting

I'm working on making this a reality. Come a long way. Its a transition!

This post is a bit of a vent so please bear with me. I am writing exhausted from a long week full of interesting, new experiences.   It has been intense with work, activities, a date (yes a date on Tuesday- just a first date but was fun), and trying to manage my health. Every day I learn more about insulin resistance and PCOS, but I still have a long way to go.  The hardest part is knowing how to manage my new insulin requirements.  My body is having a tough time adjusting to the low GI diet/metformin because my insulin levels can be low causing sudden fatigue, body aches and light headiness.

I have been very strict with my diet and the affects seem to be so different day to day.  It would be one thing if I could figure out ‘oh this food makes me fatigued’ or ‘this food helps me feel better’ but there doesn’t seem to be a rhyme or reason?  It’s a serious problem because when I say sudden fatigue, I mean sudden fatigue.

Yesterday I ate 2 pieces of whole grain, whole wheat toast with a little bit of butter.  Then I rushed out the door.  (I hadn’t gotten much sleep the night before which I’m sure didn’t help but still it was weird).  So, as I was driving to Syracuse I got about 20 minutes and I became very tired- my eyes burning, my head feeling fuzzy.  It was all I could to pull off the exit and into a parking lot.  I knew I needed to eat something and unfortunately had nothing in the car.  Across the street was a McDonalds and I figured it would have to do.  I debated about what to order and finally went with a Diet Coke for the caffeine and an order of chicken nuggets (not the best but I figured mostly protein and fat, no big carb loaded bun).  The strangest thing was almost immediately I felt better.  My mind felt alert, my eyes stopped hurting and I was able to feel good all day.  Isn’t that peculiar? The other question is why did the toast cause the reaction?  I had a good low carb, whole wheat bread and no sugar  or jam on the toast?

Maybe some of you, online world, have ideas or have experienced similar experiences.   These episodes are  not regular and don’t seem to fit any pattern either in the source or solution?  Honestly nothing seems to make me feel better aside from sleeping and who has time to sleep for 2-3 hours in the afternoon?  I have gotten a myriad of suggestions including  peanut butter, protein bars, shakes, candy, juice,  agave syrup, and other foods to reverse the low insulin (I’m pretty sure the attacks are hypoglycemic- meaning caused from insulin rates that are too low).  I also can’t figure out what particularly triggers it and why sometimes it does/does not happen? It’s so strange.

I’ve called my endocrinologist (who is the best) and left a message (they are closed Friday’s).  I am meeting with him next Thursday, and you can bet I will have a lot of questions.

It has been a struggle and I must say I have not done great this week exercise-wise (only 3 times this week).  I have been so exhausted it is hard to move.  Its an adjustment but don’t worry I’m not off my game for long.  I am meeting with my trainer Wednesday (trainer Wednesday, doctor Thursday- busy week!).

One of the hardest things is my new feelings that food is an enemy.  When you don’t know if a food will send you into an episode or cause other problems it is hard to enjoy it.  I have not learned to anticipate, like or crave my new food requirements. I’m really trying but nothing tastes as good as it used to. Excuse my language but it kind of sucks.  I used to love cooking but it seems like everything I know how to make is not allowed for various reasons. In addition, the whole wheat/low carb varieties of food just aren’t as good or satisfying, and I’ve never been a huge ‘hunk of meat’ person.  I am starting to uncover new recipes, cookbooks and websites that look promising but right now nothing I can eat looks good.

I try to remind myself that ‘its just food’, which helps but it’s still hard.  Its tough to go to FHE and see people eating cake, hard to go to dinner and not eat the free bread, its hard when a food I think is OK seems to cause an episode.  I also don’t want to be one of those annoying dieters that everyone has to tip-toe around.  I want them to feel comfortable eating whatever they want to eat.   I’m keeping a journal of everything I eat, and the symptoms I experience, but I just miss things.  It feels like I miss everything.

Anyway, please excuse a little complaining on my part.  Changes are difficult, but I know I have to be successful.  This is it.  This is the moment where I grit down and change my life.  This is where all the challenges I’ve had since I was a little fat 8 year old girl make sense and fall into place.  I’m getting answers but along the way adding more questions…It’s a journey!

Lately I’ve been reading the experiences of other PCOS patients and it is comforting to see how their experiences mirror mine.  It is also nice to see them persevering through the tough times, making amazing progress, and eventually achieving full health.  It gives a girl hope!  Its also nice to know the diagnosis and treatment are not easy for anyone. Every PCOS patient struggles with regulating insulin levels, changing their diets and controlling symptoms.  Reading the blogs does make me happy I’m not trying to have a baby because the women that are experience even more struggles with their PCOS.  I feel bad for these women and their struggles. With both PCOS and endometriosis I may not be able to ever have a baby, but I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it!

There are also PCOS patients who suffer much more then me- some practically losing their hair and others experiencing large painful skin conditions. I guess that’s part of the reason I wanted to write this post- I’ve been benefiting so much from reading the blogs of other patients and feeding off of their stories.  Hopefully someone will feed off of mine.  I thought I had experienced all the hardships of this fitness quest but the last few weeks have been tough- on one hand thrilling and mind-opening, but on the other difficult, confusing and both mentally and physically trying.

Thank you for letting me vent a little bit and for the support.  I’ll get through this and be a better person at the end. I can already see it happening. Take care and have a great President’s Day weekend.

12 thoughts on “PCOS Venting

  1. Even if you have both of those conditions it is possible to have a child. Keep that in mind. Many do struggle but many many don’t. It is hard to get your body regulated. Hopefully you can start to feel a little better.

    1. thanks so much. I know I will be able to figure my body eventually. It’s a process.
      I appreciate your insight more than I can say. It is so valuable and comforting.

  2. Wow Rachel, that is really tough. I’m sorry that you are going through so much. But I know you are strong and that you will make it all work. Look how far you have come in the past year-you inspire me!

    PS…I want to hear more about this date 🙂

    1. I wondered when someone would pick out the date reference! It was a lot of fun. He’s not exactly my type but too be honest I don’t really know what my type is? Nevertheless, we went to an arcade type place with miniature golf, bowling, go cart etc. It was a lot of fun.
      Thanks so much for your encouragement. I am so lucky to have great friends like you. I only wish I had been a better influence when we were roommates. I’m afraid you caught me at my bad eating/fast food worst. I’m glad I can be a positive example now.

  3. I have PCOS too! It is a miracle we are pregnant and it happened without medication! As for the guy business, you will find one. I never thought someone would love me, but I found the best guy ever! 🙂
    PCOS does suck. I am not sure if it was caused by my weight or not. I am going to say no and that PCOS is why I have a hard time losing weight! I know it is tough! Keep your chin up.

    1. Thanks for the encouragement. I think with PCOS and weight it is a bit of a chicken and egg question. The PCOS makes you predisposed to gain weight, and then the gaining weight makes the PCOS worse. Its a vicious cycle.
      It has been a tough year for me but I think I am a better person for it. I have become more in sync with my body and more accepting of who I am. Plus, I’ve lost 60 lbs so not too shabby!
      One word of advice- I highly recommend finding a good endocrinologist. Then once you have found him or her take detailed notes about your symptoms, food intake, exercise, blood sugars, responses to medicine etc. I have found that even with a good doctor, I have had to be a pain in his side. Continually asking questions and making decisions about my condition. Any doctor will give the easy answer unless pressed to dig deeper. Don’t let them tell you everything is fine. You know your body and fight for it. Having detailed notes helps immeasurably in that fight.

  4. I am in the infertility trenches and I just have to say that every single person that I know with PCOS has been able to get pregnant. Most need some help with fertility drugs, but the end result is a baby. There are far worse fertility issues than PCOS and in our case nothing (not even IVF) can help our fertility issues. Now about getting a guy, have you tried online dating. I met my husband on an online LDS dating site.

    1. I’m so sorry about your infertility. That would be such a trial.
      I’ve tried online dating 3 times, really tried, but to no avail. I know a lot of people have had success with it but not me. I kind of wish there was an old-school matchmaking service in my area or something like that which could set up dates. I had a good date last night which made me happy. No idea where it will go but a good date is a step in the right direction.
      Thanks for the comment and keep me posted on your journey.

      1. I’ve also come a long way in my understanding of PCOS and insulin resistance since I wrote this post. It has been an insane year!

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