I have PCOS.

PCOS is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. 

Basically, I have a bunch of fluid filled sacs that have positioned themselves on my ovaries.  This has caused me to be insulin resistant, or more commonly known as Type II Diabetic.   

To summarize, PCOS stinks! 

PCOS mainly affects women of childbearing age.  It causes obesity, irregular periods, acne, facial hair, depression, and infertility.  There has been research that suggests that PCOS may be hereditary but doctors have not been able to isolate the gene that causes it.  

About 10 years ago, before I was diagnoses, I lost 106 pounds by dieting and exercising every day.  I put very little effort into losing and the weight just melted off of me.  About six years after that, it seemed like I woke up one day and my body was out of control.  I had gained back all the weight, plus some.  It seemed as though it was almost overnight.  My doctor at the time suggested that I might have PCOS and asked if I had ever heard anything about that.  She explained it to me and handed me a pamphlet with a website so that I could do the research on it.  I didn’t do the research.  I didn’t care.  I wanted a pill that would fix it so that I could forget about it. 

It wasn’t until I was married that PCOS really reared its ugly head.  My husband and I were talking about trying to have children.  I went to the doctor to make sure that everything was in working order.  I found out then that I had endometrial hyperplasia.  The lining of my uterus was beginning to create cancer cells.  My doctor put me on medication that was designed to help stop the cancer cell growth.  After four surgeries, the hyperplasia was gone.  However, the medicine had some side effects.  The most distinct side effect?  Weight gain. 

I share all of this because I would like the world to understand that all of us that are overweight are not lying around eating junk food.  Some of us have medically diagnosed conditions which make weight loss difficult, if not at times, impossible. 

The PCOS has caused my hormones to be out of control.  I have too much of one which causes another to become dormant and other to go into over drive.  It’s like a constant chain reaction or for visual effect; it is like dominoes falling over. 

I have continued to work very closely with my gynecologist and with my primary care physician.  Both doctors have encouraged me to be patient, yet consistent, with my weight loss process.  It is harder for me to lose weight.  My body doesn’t react the way a normal person’s body does.  My body takes every change as a shock and then shuts down until the shock is over. 

PCOS requires lifestyle changes.  I am very aware of how many carbohydrates and sugars I am putting into my body.  When given the choice between sugar and sweetener, I opt for sweetener.  I have actually learned to enjoy unsweet ice tea!!  The advice of “eat more fruits and vegetables” isn’t even good advice for me.  Fruit is full of carbs and natural sugars.  I love fruit, but I have to be careful of how much of that I eat as well. 

Another change is that I have to be constantly aware of what my blood sugar is prior to any exercise I do.  I have this fear of my blood sugar dropping at the gym and me passing out.  My workout schedule takes a little extra effort.  I have to know exactly what time I will be going to the gym.  I need to test my blood sugar thirty minutes before I get there.  I also have to eat something with protein in it one hour before I get there.  Everything has to align, or I could cause myself to get seriously ill. 

I battle PCOS every day.  It’s physically taken its toll on me and mentally has frustrated and exhausted me.  My husband and I have agreed to give up trying to have children at least for now, perhaps forever.  I am a great candidate for infertility or even a miscarriage and I am not emotionally ready for that battle yet. 

I have made some great progress in my battle though.  I once had a blood pressure of 260/ 180.  The nurse that took my blood pressure actually asked me how I wasn’t having a stroke.  That scared me to death.  I was on blood pressure medication for about a year.  I am now free from that burden.  My blood pressure has remained at a healthy 128/84 for the last two years. 

My fasting glucose level was once around 2.5, is now at a healthy 5.5 (6 is considered the point where medication is no longer needed.)  I currently take a shot twice a day, as well as a pill 4 times a day.  I am anxious to be rid of all of it!!

I heard a phrase about PCOS once that I have tried to remember when I get frustrated.  “I have PCOS, but PCOS doesn’t have me”.  PCOS is incurable, but controllable.  As far as I am concerned, I am winning the battle for control, one step at a time!!


1 Comment »

  1. Tracey Poteete Said:

    Just wanted to say hello to you and tell you I am thinking about you during this journey that you are on! I congratulate you for stepping up and doing something to better your health!! Take it one day at a time and before you know it You Will Have Control – I know you can do it and you have my support all the way! We all need encouragement at one time or another or every day for that matter in the times we live in now and I encourage you to not give up and keep telling yourself you are worth it -because You Are! Wishing you all the best.

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