Sunday, July 10, 2011

To the day...

Disclaimer:  This post might contain what some would consider too much information.  But I don't think so.  It seems there are no boundaries to what women will talk about-- or write about-- when it comes to birthin', babies, and bodies.  I'm writing about the return of my fertility just in case another nursing twin-mama is curious.

My time of the month.  Aunt Flo.  My visitor.  Period.  Menstruation.  Pain in the ass.  Call it whatever nickname you want, it's not fun.

My period came howling back 17 months to the day after my boys were born.  I've been without a period for a little over 26 months total.  I haven't missed it.  I'm trying to frame it in a positive light.  "It's the return of my fertility!"  Yay.  I'm not trying to get pregnant, so that one's not working for me.  "It's a time of restfulness and a little self-pampering."  Yeah, that's not cutting it either;  I have 17 month old twins.  "My body is cleaning itself out, cleansing, renewing."  Ok, that's great but why must this cleansing HURT so much?!

I'm cranky.  And crampy.

I should have known this was coming, though.  Gus and Jack are nursing just as frequently during the day-- up to 10 times-- but their night nursings have dropped off considerably.  Mom had mentioned a few times that the return of menstruation usually coincides with night weaning.  And last night, both boys slept through the night!  They woke around 6 to nurse, but went back to sleep for another delicious 3.5 hours.  I haven't slept in until 9:30 in forever.  It was lovely.  

Then I woke up to a familiar ache in my lower abdomen, with pain referring down to my knees.  Yep, I know that causes THAT.  Sure enough, today was the day.  I sent Moviedad out to the drugstore to get some ibuprofen.  He came back with the painkillers and chocolate.  I love that man.   

I didn't notice any change in my milk supply.  My nipple didn't become extra-sensitive.  I didn't even have any PMS symptoms, unless you count one very bad day earlier this week when I lost my cool and yelled at the boys.  (But I don't think that was related to hormones, I think it was just a really bad day.)

I used to have insanely rough periods, with pain that made me pass out a few times in high school.  In fact, when my brother who was in kindergarten at the time didn't feel like going to school on a given morning, he would tell Mom "I have the cramps".  He figured it worked for me, he might as well give it a try!

I ended up on birth control pills, which helped immensely.  I felt regulated.  I could deal with four periods a year.  I chugged along happily for nine years, knowing what I was missing when it came to pain and inconvenience but completely ignorant of how clouded I truly was.

When I got off the pills-- after a "detox" of about two months where all my hormone systems were scarily out of whack-- it felt like I had woken up.  My head felt clearer.  My emotional highs and lows were more tolerable.  I felt good.  A couple of months after that I was pregnant.

And now that I'm getting back into the menstrual swing of things, even though I detest the pain that will probably show up every month or so, I will not be taking any more hormone pills.

I'll manage my way with a clear head, two amazing babies, and a husband who loves me enough to bring home some chocolate.  


  1. In total and complete TMI mode, do you use reusable pads? I know for me switching away from disposables helped ease up on periods, though who the hell knows why. They're generally pretty mild now, or at least less crampy. (They were a nightmare pre-baby.)

    Also: kudos! My period came back for real when Miles was about 10 months (about a week and a half before our wedding, actually). There was a brief 2 day thing when I was on the mini-pill, though that only lasted three months.

    I think about getting back on the pill occasionally, but I could hardly control my emotions when I was on it before Miles.

  2. Wow, 26 months! That is amazing. I've only nursed one at a time, but still didn't manage near half that. Mine came back at 14 weeks and 12 weeks. :/ Boo, hiss. :P

    I used to have really bad periods, too, and birth control pills helped. I was on them for many years before trying to conceive (I think 8 years?)...I don't plan to go back on them, but we've got to figure out a better birth control plan after (surprise) baby #3 is born. Obviously we are not disciplined enough to use NFP. lol

  3. I, too, must celebrate for you that your time without your period lasted this long! Amazing! I guess that's the high five you got physically from the universe for putting out so much energy caring for not one but two babies:) I wish for your sake it could have stayed away longer. I wish it for all of our sakes!

  4. I don't recall when my menses returned, but I remember it was TOO SOON! lol

    Good for you on not going with hormones. I swore them off myself years ago. Too many side effects. Bleh.

  5. I'm not looking forward to mine returning! Really interesting blog post- more people should talk about these things! Thanks :)