I was stunned when my gynecologist just matter-of-factly said, ‘well, you know that you shall never have kids right?’ I was like 16years old with no intention of having kids whatsoever! But when she brought it up, I was all furrowed eyebrows and twisted mouth, going in the head like “huh? Who asked her about kids anyways!” Sadly, I did not ask her that one question, “Why?”
At that point, I admit to utter ignorance about the whole matter, my health, my body and my future journey with my body. I was just a nerdy, extremely skinny, tomboyish 16year old who cared two hoots about appearance, looking attractive or anything to do with vanity! But it was a façade! It was more like a thick armor below which lived a little girl who thought, she was extremely unattractive, skinny, coarse and unpolished to ever be that super attractive girl ever! I was just a little lost, considered myself unfortunate thanks to my persistent acne, sprouting body hair and slightly raspy voice! Never once did it occur to me that it was linked to my periods, which were, well, missing most of the time anyways!
Welcome to the emotional side of a PCOS struck teenager of the 2000s!
You will find hundreds of websites talking about PCOS, PCOD, their healing process, and technicalities! But am here to lay out the real, lived out life of a recovered PCOS patient. That’s me!
I have 6 very strong things to say about life as a PCOS patient.
- Out of sync: From my 8th grade, I have always been a night owl. Loved studying at night, staying up late and reading books and was proud of being able to stay awake the whole night and be perfectly functional the day after! Today 18 years hence, I realize how wrong I was! I was messing up with my circadian rhythm! I ate what pleased me, all processed foods, junk food, drank all the dark coffee the world had to offer and popped every pimple I could lay my hands on! Was brash and aggressive about any advice coming my way, regarding my out of sync lifestyle!
- Emotional roller-coaster: This is a question I am yet to find answers for, is it just the emotional upheavals that disturb our inner rhythms or our disturbed rhythms that affect our mood! I was always this angry, spiteful, obnoxious person, being a teenager kind of added to that drama. I was super low on confidence, super low on self-esteem and super shy! I never wanted to be seen, noticed. I felt I was the unluckiest girl ever, always the victim, always the person who puts up with bad luck.
- Distorted Image of self: I have hated seeing the mirror for years because it would be honest to me! It would show me hair sprouting on my chin, it would point out mercilessly to my ever-darkening upper lip. It would mock at my stocky thighs covered in thick dark hair. It would show my boyish under-developed breasts! Did I like that reflection of me? Hell, no!
- Lack of information: I never bothered to learn more about my body, her natural cycles and respect their regularities. I viewed periods as something that disrupts my basketball practice. And the worst part, I felt my periods were never on my side, they showed up by their free will, sometimes in a month, sometimes after 3, sometimes after 9! So, I had to always be prepared! It meant never wearing light colored trousers, never leaving the house without a stash of sanitary napkins, never staying overnight at friends’ places without adequate old rugs in case of staining.
- Lack of routines: I have been an impulsive person. I never bothered to follow any strict regimen be it exercise or any food habits. It never occurred to me that what I was putting in my body was creating my body in return. I was always ready to give the ownership of my body’s imbalances to my doctors, parents, and luck!
- Self-Denial: I was always a little wary of my feminine entity. I myself viewed being female, meant being weak, uncertain and helpless. I could never identify with the female projections I saw around myself. Be it the super glossy, flawless skinned maidens I saw in magazines, television or cinemas or the typical damsels in distress I met in books and around me. I found it comical to attract the attention of the opposite gender or even bother to respond to anyone who seemed interested in me. Again, this was more a wall I build around myself, to protect myself from the harsh realities of my innermost and outermost realms. I denied my delicateness, my natural form and refused to accept myself as I was for the longest time.
This is September, the month of PCOS awareness! PCOS, also known as Stein-Leventhal Syndrome, one the most common endocrine disruptions to affect the female population. It affects nearly five in every ten women of childbearing age. This is a global phenomenon and it is on the rise. It leads to multiple diseases, noteworthy being type 2 diabetes, infertility, blood pressure, and heart conditions. I lived through all my years of ignorance, anger, and frustration trying hard to fathom what made me so incredibly unlucky! Today I know better, I was not unlucky, just ill-informed, out of sync with my own body and a lot less in love with myself. This is a chronicle of my journey through the tunnel of PCOS, diabetes, and thyroid into the light of recovery, self-healing, and fertility.