Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Stranger With My Face
I'll always know how long I've been taking T-fen because I started on January 1, so it's been three weeks — which, as I've mentioned, seems kinda early to me to be having dramatic side effects. And yet.
Boy, do I not feel like myself!!
No period this month, period. I had lots of the symptoms of "it's almost here!" but it never arrived, and now it's too late to be late.
As my Constant Readers know, I've been ready to embrace the menopause for a while now, but I think I expected it to come on more . . . gradually. From an every-three-week heavy-flow period to — nothing?
And speaking of things that aren't flowing, my ladyplumbing has clogged in the most unbecoming way. I am bloated and gassy and yet — unproductive. This is so not me. And it also makes me wildly popular at zumba, as you might imagine.
(I haven't skipped a class yet, but nonetheless — life is pretty gross if you think you're farting too much for zumba.)
And my weight is stuck-stuck-stuck, but not at my new set point of 252; it's stuck at 255, which seems significant to me. I'm still doing exactly what I was doing before, but three pounds from the ozone have found their way to my body and won't leave. (Clearly, they are three pounds of poo and menstrual fluid — ew, sorry, I know — but what can I do?)
I Googled "tamoxifen and weight gain" and "tamoxifen and constipation" and found a lively chat board on breastcancer.org, one of the "approved" sites my doc sent me to, and those girls are great. "Your doctor will tell you that weight gain is a myth," one wrote, "but look around — do we look like a myth?" And lots of these women saw the symptoms I'm seeing after only three weeks, which made me feel so much better.
One said something that made a lot of sense to me. A well-known symptom of T-fen is vaginal dryness; "so," she writes, "doesn't it make sense that we'd be dryer everywhere and our systems would be more sluggish? Drink lots of fluids, eat lots of natural produce and fiber; things will get moving again." I dutifully added "prunes" to the shopping list (fortunately, I like prunes) and am trying to drink more water and include something that grows naturally from the earth in every meal.
(Italicized phrase is one I repeat to my family ad nauseum; they would eat nothing but carbs otherwise.)
I went through a huge period of adjustment with my hormone-releasing IUD back in the day; it took six months for my body to regulate itself, so I expect things will "settle" a bit once Tami's made friends in the neighborhood. But I'm also scheduled for a physical next week or so, and I look forward to talking it all over with my new doc.
Lots of other news to report (including the fact that some mornings I wake up and my knees feel perfectly normal, it's the damndest thing — most mornings, they both feel like they're being squeezed in a vise), but I have a huge editing job; plus, we must shovel the walkways before the kids leave for school. Small storm last night, delayed school openings today. I'm just glad they won't all be home while I'm trying to work.
Shh, don't tell them. I'm really good at keeping it a secret.
Oatmeal with wheat berries and raisins for breakfast — let's get this digestion train moving!
—Lady C, conductress of her very own life