Do you know much about estrogen? I sure don’t. I kind of had a crash course last December before/during/after the hysterectomy, but if you asked me to give you the dictionary-definition of it, I’m out.
Anyway. My oncologist doesn’t want me to be on hormone replacement (I had total hysterectomy last year) because of the breast cancer risk, and since there’s “not enough data” on Cowden Syndrome, it’s hard to know anything about anything when it comes to Cowden Syndrome (not to mention Lhermitte-duclos Disease, but that’s for another post). So, most doctors on my team support me doing life now COLD TURKEY. No estrogen, no nothing, just to be safe. And, for these last months, I was on that train too. The train to, “No-hormone-replacement-for-Heather-because-we-don’t-want-to-risk-her-getting-breast-cancer-and-let’s-just-see-how-she-does-life Town”
While the hot flashes and insomnia have been paralyzing at times, I started taking Melatonin, Zinc, and Magnesium before bed which has helped me sleep through the nights and not wake up from a hot flash. The insomnia does get pretty gnarly still at times, but I guess overall I am managing.
These last several months I have exercised (Yoga, Zumba, etc.) the last 2-4 days pretty religiously. And, while I may have written in the past about my expectations of weight loss/my body changing, I have worked on letting those expectations go (I am a work in progress, daily). And, I know I am gaining muscle. I can hold certain Yoga poses now, and just today in class, I didn’t feel like I was going to die. Die right in the middle of the floor. I was tired, let’s be clear, but I didn’t think “Today, in this class, I am going to die from exhaustion.” like I used to. So, that’s good!
But, while some parts of my body are changing for the good, there are other parts that are changing for the BAD. Bad, bad, bad, bad, baaaaaaddddddddd. It has kept me up at night. What is going on? Shouldn’t I be seeing some other changes? I started using an app to track my food, exercise, and I just haven’t felt right about something. I don’t know what. Things should be changing MORE for the good!
Talked to my chiropractor today about estrogen stuff and the concerns I have about my body changing (I’m 42? I have no thyroid or ovaries? I mean, right there, isn’t that 3 strikes against me?) I’m not giving up. I’m not complaining specifically. I’m concerned. I know that I don’t like the way my body is changing negatively. So, I need to do some research. Because, while “we don’t know” the breast cancer risk with HRT, I am monitored very closely on that front (mammograms, breast MRI’s, clinical breast exams). I can’t believe that HRT would cause breast cancer for me, especially when I have no family history of it.
But, all those things I just typed are WHAT WE DO NOT KNOW. All the freaking unknowns that Cowden Syndrome shoves in my face on a silver platter.
All the while, laughing maniacally at me as I type this in the midst of the worst hot flash ever. I am ready to try something different. If I live to be 95 years old I cannot endure much more of this. And, for the record, whatever you have heard about hot flashes is A LIE. A BIG FREAKING FAT HUGE LIE. Until you have lived and breathed this – you have nooooooooooooooooooooooooooo idea.
PS. Anyone want to get me one of these for an early Christmas present? 🙂