My Fat Ass - Facebook Post - Sept. 6th, 2016

Today I want to talk about a struggle that a lot of women go through, and they don’t even have to have PCOS to go through it. Yep, I am going to be talking about my fat ass. It is very hard for women with PCOS to lose weight, and I will talk about why more in depth later this month, but this is more important. I can do something that lots of women can’t do, I can say right here confidently to everyone that I LOVE MY BODY!!!!!

My body has two legs and feet that allow me to walk my dog every day which is my favorite part of the day. My right hand can freaking DRAW! How cool is that! My freaking eyes see color, I would never know what the colors pink and green looked like if my eyes couldn’t see color. My voice box works, it may not sound pretty, but I can sing to my favorite songs. Not only that, I can hear them with my ear holes!!! I am so lucky to have this body.

Beauty standards can really kiss my fat ass. I have been a lot skinnier than I am now, but it didn’t make me happier. I did not become happy until I started loving myself for exactly who I am. I am full figured, get over it. It doesn’t mean I am lazy or that I stuff my face with gross food. I walk, I run, I know how to freaking kick box okay. I eat balanced meals (unless there are French Fries) and I nourish my body with natural materials. I have been on many diets before and I will never go on one again. I do not count calories and never will again. I listen to my body and fuel it when it needs fuel and stop when it’s almost full. 

Now there will be times where you will see me skinnier, it’s because when my endocrine system is in balance, weight loss becomes easier. The thyroid is functioning properly, so my normal daily activates will burn more calories than when I am out of balance. So if you see me losing weight, it is NOT because I want to be skinnier. It is because I am successfully balancing out my endocrine system. So instead of telling me I look good, congratulate me on my hard work, because honestly, I always look good. πŸ˜‰ 

Love your body today because it is the only vessel in this life that your soul has.

πŸ’— Jennifer

SO Tired - Facebook Post - Sept. 5th, 2016

I have had a pretty big, fun, exciting week in both work and play, so I thought it only appropriate to talk about fatigue today, because I am freaking tired! The hormone cortisol is produced by the adrenal gland and it controls homeostasis of your body, basically keeping things in balance. If you’re hot, you sweat to cool. If you’re cold, you shiver to warm. It’s an essential part of keeping your body alive. It’s called the stress hormone because it releases when the body is under stress in hopes that it will regulate. Sometimes it works too much, because remember my adrenal gland does what it wants, and sometimes it never really goes back to normal so you always feel in a constant state of stress. This makes your body work and work to try and make you de-stress and then you end up exhausting your adrenal gland and it’s like “Sorry, no more cortisol for you… you sleep NOW.” Any time of day, you give me a pillow, chances are I could sleep. But it is not just that I am tired, it’s fatigue. It also comes with brain fog, so co-workers, you now know why I become 10% less useful between the hours of 3-4. That’s the worst time of day for me... I believe they call it “nap time” in pre-school. The best way for me to fight this is to make sure I keep regular sleeping habits and I get at least 8 hours of sleep a day. I like using my mind and I want to be rested so that I can use it at the best of my ability. Thankfully today is a holiday and a movie day, so it will be very relaxing… and I might even take a nap this afternoon too. 

Wishing you and your body a good night’s rest tonight. 
πŸ’— Jennifer 

This week's featured story: UP IN DA UTERUS CLUB

The female reproductive system is pretty fantastic. We fucking create life. Think about that. Inside of our bodies, things happen all in sync to create another actual human being. Pretty cool right? Here’s what happens if we don’t create life that month. See, the ovaries are like home base, the egg is at home and she gets a call from her girl like “Hey lady, you need a man! Let’s go to the club!” Men, if you think we take a long time to get ready, that little egg works on her make-up and hair and outfit aaallllll month just to look good for you.

They are all ready to go and she travels down the Bentley Fallopian Tube to the Uterus Club in hopes that the spermy men will be there waiting for her, wiggling around fighting each other for the one special egg to fertilize and begin the process of creating life together. Typical men all fighting for one girl, but we love it when you fight for us.

The egg arrives and there are a lot of nice tissue men there, but it’s not the spermy ones she likes. The tissue is like “Hey girl! I know you’re here for your spermy men, but come hang in the VIP section for a while, we made it special just for you. It’s nice and cozy here, we’ll buy you a drink while you wait, and when they get here you can snuggle up together in our fluffiness!” But after a few drinks she thinks to herself, “You know, I don’t have time for this, this place is really nice but there are no sperm anywhere!!!” So she’s like, “Bye Felicia!” Now the uterus, oh the uterus. Not only is the uterus the actual club, but it also acts as the over protective, pissed off, club bouncer. When the spermy men don’t show for the egg, it’s like “Dudes, this VIP egg traveled all the way over here to this awesome venue filled with nice fluffy tissue that I invited to keep her company, and these sperms are a no show? Fuck this! Everyone out! I worked all month on this place and it’s all for nothing. Every tissue in here, Get. The. Fuck. Out. And if you don’t I am going to shove your asses out.” All the tissue is like, “Nah, she is gonna be back, chill dude, the sperms are gonna show, let’s just drink more champagne and text Derek to come on by too.” So Derek comes by and brings like 10 of his friends, and the uterus is like “I told your asses to GET OUT!!!!! RRRROOOOOOAAARRRR!!!!!! Then it starts convulsing and all the tissue is like “Oh damn, this is some real shit, let’s roll out”. And that, men, is how a period happens.

Mine happens a little differently. My uterus still kicks all of the tissue out once a month but it’s for different reasons. Instead of getting mad, it kinda gets sad. It works and works and works to make a viable venue for my VIP to sit relax and meet some men. Then it waits and waits and waits for the VIP egg to show up. But she never shows. So my uterus is like “let’s keep inviting nicer and fluffier tissue and maybe she will show up.” But she never does. Even if sperm were to show too, they would not find the VIP. Eventually the uterus has so much fluffiness inside that it can’t contain itself, comes to the realization that she is not coming to the club, and gives up. It completely trashes the place and clears everyone out in an emotional outburst, “Nothing I do is ever good enough for her!!!” But once that is over and the place is empty, it stops, takes a few deep breaths and realizes it is too young to give up. It starts over fresh, making a nicer, fluffier venue in hopes that the VIP will show up next time around. Where are the eggs you ask? Instead of turning into a VIP egg and going to the Uterus Club in the Bentley Fallopian Tube, she stayed at home in the ovary and turned into a sad sack cyst month after month. But my ovaries don’t give up either! Every month they still try to make a VIP, it’s just that most months she never shows up to the club. Woman with PCOS may not ovulate but can still menstruate. FML right? The key is to get that VIP out to the club, so I am hoping that one day my hard work will give my VIP enough confidence to show up. I never gave up on anything before, so why start now right?
πŸ’— Jennifer 

What is Wrong with me? - Facebook Post - Sept. 2nd 2016

Today I share a fact from the PCOS Nutrition Center. The fact that PCOS receives so little funding to study the syndrome makes it hard to understand, therefore it is commonly misdiagnosed. Before finding my doctor (who knew what it was right away), I went through so many tests because previous doctors did not connect the dots to all my symptoms. I was thought to have a hernia once, then it was celiac, then probably endometriosis. Cat-scans didn't show anything. Then I kept feeling like it was all my fault. It must be my shampoo that is causing my hair to fall out, so I bought something better. It must be the face cream I am using that is causing my acne, so I bought something different. I must not be exercising hard enough, so I would run an extra mile. All this pain is because I didn't stretch, so I took an extra yoga class. I am just emotional… ugh, whatever. It was exhausting. Then one day I experienced a doctor not believing the symptoms I was reporting. I felt so alone because no one knew what I was going through, even me. When I finally sat down with Dr. Lina Shammas, D.O., (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) after meeting her only once before, she pulled out 14 pages of blood work and said “I wanted you to come in because I want to tell you exactly is going on.” She drew pictures and went over numbers and explained to me how everything connected… everything. Then I started crying and she took my hand and said “You are not broken, you can do this.” She is so special to me because not only does she have the answers, she believes in me. 
We are fighting against low funds, so put in the effort to find someone who has the knowledge of the disease you are fighting. They are one in a million, but it is worth it.

Don’t forget to love yourself, because you too, are not broken.


Marion O'Varion

I have PCOS - Facebook Post - Sept. 1st 2016

Good morning Facebook family and friends! Today is September 1st and I am going to share something with you about my life. September is PCOS Awareness Month and I have PCOS.

PCOS is an acronym for Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Wait men!!! Don’t keep scrolling!!! I know you see the word “ovarian” and you start screaming internally and just desperately want to casually carry on with your day. But I promise, if you keep reading and follow my posts this month, you will discover the secret to understanding women. #RealMenTalkAboutOvaries

I don’t talk about PCOS a lot, not because I am embarrassed or ashamed, but it is because I refuse to let it define me as a person. I am Jennifer. Not Jennifer with PCOS. But there are millions of men and women out there who don’t understand what it is, and furthermore, a countless number of woman who have PCOS and don’t even know it. So I am taking advantage of September by posting a daily fact/topic about PCOS in order to spread awareness, all in hopes of helping women who wake up every day wondering what the hell is wrong with their body and mind.

I was officially diagnosed with PCOS in Dec 2015, but looking back I believe I developed PCOS between the ages of 12-14. I always knew something was wrong and at 31 years old I found out that PCOS was the answer to everything. I want to try to be very clear on what PCOS is this month, because it is a whirlwind. It is described as the “silent disorder that wreaks havoc on a woman’s body” and when I try to explain it to people, they are just left with questions (which is why I am going to need a whole month to do it).

PCOS is an endocrine is disorder that effects more than just the ovaries. There are different types of PCOS and every woman’s body that has PCOS handles it in a different way. 1 in 10 women have PCOS.

First here is the definition of the endocrine system.
The system of endocrine glands in the body. The endocrine system chemically controls the various functions of cells, tissues, and organs through the secretion of hormones. The endocrine system includes the adrenal glands, parathyroid gland, pituitary gland, and thyroid gland, as well as the ovaries, pancreas, and testes. -The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition

The glands that I have issues with are adrenal (sex, energy, and stress), pancreas (insulin), ovaries (reproductive), and now through recent developments, possibly thyroid (metabolism).

Ever wonder why my upper lip is red and puffy? It’s because I just waxed! My adrenal gland produces too many androgens (or male hormones). All women produce androgens, I am just on overdrive. Therefore I have symptoms like hirsutism (hair growth on my face) but I am 100% a beautiful woman, so deal with it.

We all have a medulla. It’s right by our kidneys. That is what controls physical and emotional stress. When dealing with something, the medulla sends a signal to your brain to tell it how to handle the situation. You know what mine does? It goes berserk and sends all the signals. So you know what I do? I treat it. I take a medication that regulates it and I educate myself on what is going on with my body so I know how to counteract the symptoms; things like closing my eyes and taking a few deep breaths to regulate my heart rate, meditating frequently, and analyzing my reactions to make sure they are appropriate for the situation at hand. Most women with PCOS suffer from anxiety and depression, and some can be classified as having a panic disorder, when really their hormones are just out of whack. Education is just as, if not more, important as medication.

My pancreas also produces too much insulin, so I am at very high risk for diabetes. I need to eat healthy because I literally don’t want to die from food. My blood sugar can get out of balance very easily and my body will feel the effects of it. It is all about building a meal with a low glycemic load and eating those meals at certain times so I don’t become diabetic.

Unfortunately the worst part of PCOS is the ovary part. PCOS is the #1 leading cause of infertility in woman. Eggs in the ovaries don’t fully mature and become cysts, therefore ovulation does not happen. But many woman with PCOS have balanced out their endocrine system enough to where they were able to ovulate and get pregnant. So it is possible and women with PCOS should never give up trying to conceive.

What a lot of people don’t know is that every single day I live in pain from inflammation of my ovaries. I tell people this today not because I want pity, but it’s to let every other woman out there who feel like they have golf balls stuck in their lower abdomen know that they are not alone. You can still be fun, successful, and happy if you don’t let PCOS run your life, I am living proof.

This is just the tip of the iceberg on what PCOS is all about and how it effects my life and the lives of millions of people. When you see my daily PCOS posts this month (I promise they will be shorter!), please read and share it with people who may be dealing with some of the same issues or having trouble understanding PCOS. I also changed my profile picture to include the color teal, because when you see the color teal this month, it is a sign to think of someone who is dealing with female reproductive system issues. If you have PCOS or know of someone who deals with these issues (like me!), then rock the color teal yourself to show support.

Thanks to my family and friends who have known about this and that have supported me and thanks to all those who will read this today and continue to love me for exactly who I am, because I think we can all agree that I’m awesome. I also need to thank my doctor, Dr. Lina Shammas, who properly diagnosed me after years of searching for answers, sat with me for over an hour to explain to me what exactly was going on with my body, supported my decision to treat the majority of my symptoms holistically rather than with pharmaceuticals, and takes my phone calls to discuss new symptoms that may develop. She is amazing.

If you want to read more about PCOS before my next post, check out this site

Or if you need help managing your PCOS, I love this site 

Don’t forget to love yourself, because there is no replacement. 

πŸ’— Jennifer

Welcome readers!

Welcome to The Ovarian Chronicle!!! I am very excited to start blogging and sharing my creative writing about having ovaries, and not just any ovaries... polycystic ones!  Tune in during the upcoming weeks to see re-postings of my PCOS Awareness Month Essays from 2016 to get you all ready and excited for new writing that I am introducing later in February. Thanks for sharing, following, and most importantly, reading!

Don't forget to love yourself!

πŸ’— Jennifer