Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Mirena: My Whole Story

Yay, it's out! Thank the gods.

Now to tell my whole story. It is not a great or terribly positive one, but here it is.

July 31, 2012 - Mirena inserted during period. I took some ibuprofen before the appointment. Insertion was a little crampy but nothing at all compared to period cramps or labor. I weigh 140 pounds, the same as when I became pregnant with Dee.

July 31-Sept 8 - Spotting and light bleeding

Oct 14- Very light, very short "period" with only one day of very light bleeding and a day on either side of spotting. It is around this point in time that I noticed that my depression and anxiety seem to be worse than usual, in that I am more irritable, moody and my Zoloft doesn't seem to be as stabilizing as it has generally been. This continues for the remainder of the time I have the Mirena.

November - My acne becomes worse than it has ever been, even as a teenager. It is painful and awful, and I am embarrassed to be nearly 30 years old with this complexion. I publish this post.

Dec 29 - I am now up to 146 pounds, and have another very short and light period (one day of very light bleeding, a day or two of spotting on either side)

I continue to experience cramping, discomfort, "fullness" and other various symptoms.

April 14 - Visit the OB/GYN office to see why I am in pain. Ultrasound reveals that the Mirena is in perfect position, but it does appear that I am gearing up to ovulate (which can actually happen, just rarely, on Mirena). The nurse sympathizes with my acne and other symptoms but urges me to try and "wait it out." My weight is 149.

May 5-11 (approximately) - I feel melancholy, exhausted, irritable, and begin to feel like I'm experiencing terrible mood swings and PMS. This is weird because while my moods and depression have been worse since getting the Mirena, I have not experienced anything like this. I post this and I begin to feel like I haven't experienced anything like this since I was first pregnant with J (which can basically be summed up as feeling like I was going through the worst PMS imaginable, though of course it wasn't PMS). I have cramps (more than usual) and just chalk it up to the same old crap. I have dreams that I am pregnant and I assume that they are just my brain vomit (however I haven't had many of those in my life since having had kids, and they were predominantly when I was actually pregnant). My weight at this point is 147.8.

May 11 - I start the worst period ever, and also post this. The cramps come in waves (much like contractions...) and I am in so much pain for 3 days of heavy bleeding that I spend as much time as possible on the couch taking ibuprofen around the clock. I have no energy and am just miserable. I used to (before I had kids) have occasional period cramps that made me want to vomit, but these are entirely different.

When I had the Mirena removed on June 10, the midwife noted that it was lower than it should have been (therefore lower than it had been in April). I believe, now, that what happened was this: I was pregnant. No more than 4-5 weeks at the most. I had a miscarriage. I didn't see anything in the toilet because it was very early (and I wasn't really looking...). The contraction-like cramps that I had were, in fact, contractions, and they managed to shift the position of the Mirena in the process of everything else.

I've since had my first period since Mirena removal. It wasn't bad, pretty much a normal period. No remarkable cramps or anything. I have lost 1.5 pounds since getting the Mirena out. My skin is healing and clearing up nicely, though I have some uneven tone and things that are still present. I expect that will take time to disappear.

As far as the miscarriage? I don't know. I feel, in my heart, that is what happened. I never took a pregnancy test. I have no way of knowing now, and I don't even know if it "counts" since I didn't even connect the dots til a few weeks after it was all over. I don't know what I am supposed to feel. Upset? I didn't want to be pregnant...but I would never have said I'd rather lose a baby than to be pregnant again. It's not in the plans for C and I to have a third biological child, for a number of reasons. We want to adopt a child, maybe two. I still want to have 4 kids when all is said and done, but originally we'd planned to only have two biological children. Now...I don't know. I feel like I'm supposed to feel something that I don't, or maybe I do feel something but have no "right" to feel anything because I don't even know for certain I was pregnant.

I know that my experiences were not common. The acne side effect is somewhat rare (I think about 10% get it), but well documented. Pregnancy can happen, rarely (less than a tenth of 1% of the time) and when it does, it may be either ectopic or it may be uterine, but there is a high risk of miscarriage either way.

So there you have it. My story. I would not get the Mirena again.

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