Friday, June 4, 2010

Day One (Not That it Matters)

Well, day two, technically, now that I've gotten around to writing about it.

I started my period yesterday. The first one since Peeper was born.

She was excatly nineteen months, one week old yesterday, if you're keeping score.

It's been almost thirty months since my last period.

(No, the math does not compute. When we did the IVF, I was in a "holding pattern" for a few weeks, waiting for Shrike's follicles to mature. I started the cycle on February 8, and we retrieved March 4 and transferred March 9.)

And it's been just over three years since a period wasn't a big thing - accompanied by a negative beta, or signaling the beginning of a countdown to a test, an insemination, a (literal) buttload of shots or our IVF cycle itself.

Which just feels weird.

I barely remember how to have a period (I had to ask Shrike where we keep the supplies!) let alone how to not really care that much about having it.

I kind of have to remind myself that I can just be blase' about this; it doesn't mean anything.

Except, yeah, it sort of does.

I mean, I know that there are plenty of women who will get their periods back within six or eight weeks, even when exclusively breastfeeding on demand.

And I know that, even with "ecological breastfeeding," the average return of menses is fifteen to eighteen months - so I've been on borrowed time for a while.

And I know that Peeper still nurses a zillion times a day and just as enthusiastically.

But, still, it feels as though some sort of threshold has been crossed.

Like it somehow means that she's a "big girl" now, or that maybe she is cutting back on nursing in ways that I'm not noticing.

And that makes me a little sad.

Also, it means that the idea of being pregnant again is now at least a sort of a physical possibility, but I know that it's not going to happen, so that makes me sad, too.

Also? It's kind of a big pain in the ass.


  1. OMG. Omg! Really? You went that long without your period. Don't be sad. Be grateful.

    (I mean, be sad about the return, sure. I'm not going to tell anyone to have a happy period. That makes me want to smack ad executives. But be pretty darn happy about those 19+9 months of freedom. I, for one, am jealous. And my period coming back had nothing to do with weaning. It came back right away, and I nursed for 16 months.)

  2. I don't remember when I started after my first two children, but I clearly remember what happened after my third. I was nursing him day and night exclusively and still my period returned, with a vengeance, when he was five months old. I've never heard of anyone else having this situation, but each time the time-of-the-month came, he didn't want to nurse as much. He was fussy, acting as though the milk tasted different perhaps. I never quite figured out what was going on, but when the period was over, he went back to nursing with enthusiasm.

  3. I know lots of women get it back right away. And I know 19+ months is a long time, so I am grateful for that. Just kind of sad to be totally, officially past "post-partum" I guess.

    Also, yeah, a pain in the ass.

    Guess it's time to investigate those non-landfill-filling "feminine protection" options that I've been thinking about hypothetically, huh?

    Also - I understand that a lot of women see a dip in supply right before their period. Peeper hasn't seemed to complain, but I've also been pumping (and, now, hand expressing) for BabyJ, so maybe I've counteracted it, or maybe she's just not complained.

    Actually, I'm hoping that in a few days we'll find out that I've been in a premenstrual slump all this time, and I can start getting a little bit more for BabyJ!

  4. You're lucky you went so long! Getting your period after not having to deal with it for so long IS a huge pain in the ass. I remember the first couple periods I had after it returned were brutal. SUPER heavy and crampy and it was like I was 12 all over again. I'd forget to change a tampon and leak. I was just miserable. Another thing is, your cycle is probably going to be messed up for a long time too. Anything is considered normal while breastfeeding, so you may have a 48 day cycle then an 18 day cycle, then regular for a few months, then messed up again. I definitely think a Diva Cup is in order, too. I had nothing but problems with tampons after giving birth and I have zero problems with my cup.

  5. I've gotten off pretty easy, in terms of the cramps. Nothing much, just an occassional awareness of my uterus.

    I am considering the Diva Cup. By the time I first met a "real" person who uses it, I was trying to get pregnant, and it certainly wasn't the time to invest in one.

    I'm also considering "mama cloth" pads.


What say you?