Warning! Male readers – skip this post!
Women who don’t want to hear about the periods of others, skip this post! If you continue reading and find the post disturbing, don’t say I didn’t warn you..
Achtung! There is a dark cloud on the sugar-free horizon… My period is coming up…
I am ruled by hormones and my periods can be likened to the “Stockholm blood bath” (a massacre) in the year 1520. At that time, the main town square was covered in blood, after a large number of Swedish aristocrats were decapitated by a Danish king.
(This “blood bath” nickname is from boarding school. Most of us living in the same house ended up getting our period at the same time. If you didn’t know, a mysterious synchronisation kicks in when girls or women live together.. Someone noticed that the sanitary bins were full.. And got upset that there were other telltale signs, as 30 girls had their period at the same time. They said “I think the Stockholm blood bath is being re-enacted in this house”. So the term was coined at my house at school. Everybody started using it to complain about their period. I’ve thought of my period in this way ever since. In my case it’s an appropriate description. I come from Stockholm.)
To be more medical, I’ve got something called fibroids, in my uterus. They are not dangerous but I can’t get rid of them without surgery. They cause a lot more bleeding than what is normal. We are talking two of the largest Lil-Lets or O.B. inserted at the same time. Plus a night pad. During the day, that is! I think you get the picture…
I strongly suspect that the fibroids also mess with my hormones, although my doctor said my hormone levels are normal.
You know, when you bleed that much on a regular basis, it’s not good for iron retention of the body. Unless you take supplements, you quickly get anemia.
The week leading up to my period is characterised by worse cravings than normal, moodiness and sore, swollen breasts.
Then comes the “blood bath”, which is made worse by the fibroids, as I explained. But apart from the messiness of bleeding that much, I actually get a break from the cravings during the period. Period pains have never been a huge problem for me either. What about you? The blood loss sometimes cause a bit of mild dizziness though. But that’s not unpleasant. Here is the wonderful thing, I repeat: As I actually have the period, and shortly after it, the cravings are considerably less intense. In fact, they are almost gone! Why is this? I’ve assumed it’s something to do with hormones.
When the bleeding is coming to an end follows 2-3 days of migraines. For this, only the codeine paracetamol tablets helps. In England you can get them over the counter. In most of the rest of the EU you need a prescription. I’ve had some horrible times in other countries when I couldn’t get strong enough tablets. They can be really patronising about this. I was actually given a stern telling off in the pharmacy in both Sweden and Latvia because I asked for codeine pills. When I went to the doctor in Sweden, they refused to give me the real deal and gave me some quack one-dose thing that was totally useless.
Another “medicine” I’ve been taking during my period, is called chocolate… And sometimes it’s felt quite helpful. This is no longer an option. But the prospect of taking on the hellish fortnight that is my period, without chocolate feels daunting.
When the post-period migraine is over there is respite for 2 weeks and the whole thing starts over again. I’m so, so sick of it.
Now I’m worried! Will these period cravings hijack my brain, crack me and cause a sugar relapse? Tune in next week for the exciting conclusion.