Cocooning + Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

PCOS

I thought long and hard before hitting the publish button on this one.

Previously I chose to focus only on positive topics, curated carefully and served up strategically on the appropriate channels.

But in the spirit of authenticity and my resolution to #LiveMyTruth in 2018, I’m going to incorporate more real talk on the blog. This is life and sometimes it’s not all, well, martinis and mascara.

You might have noticed that I haven’t been as active recently. I’ve been going through some some shit, both physical and emotional, which has resulted in me posting less and withdrawing from life in many aspects. So, I just wanted to take a minute to be real about why I’ve been MIA both on the blog and IRL.

For quite some time I’ve been feeling extremely depressed. Exhausted. Anxious. I get sick to my stomach after almost every meal. My periods are few and far between… and when I do get one, it’s not pleasant. I break out literally everywhere. I can’t sleep. I’m constantly gaining weight regardless of the amount I’m eating or exercising. Oh, and I grow a stupid amount of facial hair. If I didn’t remove it every day, I could very easily create a tutorial for Captain Jack Sparrow’s goatee braids. (I wish that was a joke.) It’s been a vicious cycle of feeling shitty and then feeling shitty about feeling shitty.

So after literal years of wondering what’s wrong with me?, visits to dozens of doctors (and counselors… and tarot card readers…) of all kinds, a Manhattan Endocrinologist named Olga finally solved the mystery. She diagnosed me with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, a chronic hormonal disorder responsible for the multitude of crazy symptoms I’ve dealt with for as long as I can remember.

This explains SO much about my life. I’ll spare you an attempt at a full scientific explanation, but essentially my body just isn’t equipped to process what I’ve been putting into it (for like, ever). I’m insulin resistant, so eating the wrong foods has been causing my body to create too much testosterone, throwing everything off kilter and making me feel (and consequently, act) whack AF. Continuing to eat the wrong things can exacerbate the symptoms and eventually lead to worse health problems.

Aside from the superficial symptoms and the mood swings and the bullshit, possibly the most devastating of all of the complications paired with PCOS is infertility. Even though I’ve admittedly been on the fence about having kids and as happily childless as I appear to be, being told that it may not be possible for me has affected me more deeply than I could have ever imagined. It’s one thing to choose not to have children, but another thing entirely to be told you can’t have them. (Here’s where cycle of sadness starts over.)

BUT! I am not about to lay down and let this defeat me. I’m on medication now and following doctor’s orders to try and get my system back to normal. Since my diagnosis, I’ve cut out sugar, gluten, grains, dairy, red meat, soy, and alcohol. (I KNOW.) Still slowly weaning myself off of caffeine, but I’ll get there. I cheated a little over the holidays (and seriously paid for it), so I’m ready to make this extreme lifestyle change official in 2018. It hasn’t been easy, but I’m hopeful that it’ll be worth it.

There is no cure for this and it’ll always be something I have to deal with… but if all goes according to plan, I’ll be a happier, healthier butterfly soon. Thank you all for sticking with me in the meantime. ❤️

P.S. If you are one of the one in ten women also affected by PCOS and you need someone to talk to, please feel free to message me. This is scary and confusing to go through and I’d be happy to chat with anyone who needs support!

7 Comments

  1. Heather January 19, 2018 / 8:54 pm

    I was diagnosed with PCOS back in 2005 when I was still in high school. Couldn’t figure out what was wrong for the longest time. Turns out me & my older sister have it but didn’t understand where it came from. No where else in our family line had anything like it. We’ve both been taking spironolactone which usually works with the extra testosterone as well as metformin for the weight. Over the years I have lost a lot of weight but also struggled to keep it off going between anywhere from 155 to 205. I have noticed my symptoms get so much better when I lose the weight. We were also both told we’d have issues getting pregnant but both had positive pregnancy tests the first try so just always be careful. Don’t hesitate to ask! Everything will be fine.

  2. Alecia January 20, 2018 / 12:57 pm

    I have it too! Only recently diagnosed so felt very overwhelmed last year…getting my head around it more now. I found taking vitamin d supplement helped me tremendously -swear by it. It helps with anxiety, tiredness, sadness, energy levels etc. Just discovered your blog and i love it!! You are stunning!!!

  3. Anne January 26, 2018 / 1:28 pm

    I don’t have the exact same problem, but I do have hormonal issues and wanted to share with you. When I went to a naturopathic physician, she told me my vitamins were not being absorbed by my body and showed me which ones I ought to be taking. She also said my adrenals were not functioning normally and also recommended an herb for my hormones. I feel so much better now! I have so much more energy after following her advice.

  4. Lisa January 26, 2018 / 2:42 pm

    Thank you for your honesty about your condition. This serious issue is not discussed enough. We talk about Type 2 diabetes, heart issues, cancer but not this. My daughter is 19 and has also be diagnosed with PCOS. She is in college so I have no control over what she eats. I don’t think she realizes how her diet is a large part of her condition. I am going to forward your article to her and I hope she takes it to heart.

  5. Vic May 3, 2018 / 4:15 am

    Hi Katie,

    I’ve ended up on your blog totally randomly and recognised myself in this article…

    Going through the same symptoms, I’ve been diagnosed with the same thing (I still call it a thing…) a couple of years ago and still didn’t process the news.
    I’ve been let down by my gynaecologist who bluntly told me that ‘yep you may never have kids’ and have felt very low since then. Positive side is that I could finally ‘prove’ to my family that I wasn’t indeed snacking/slacking more than the average person and that no matter how hard I was exercising, little difference did it make!
    Anyway, I find it hard to stay motivated to go to the gym and I’ve got no idea what my diet should be like anymore.
    I’m not thinking about babies yet (I’m ‘only’ 26) but I surely don’t want to wait to be ready to start planning this or I might have to wait for a very long time!
    Do you have any tips on how to deal with that, diet/exercising?

    Thank you for speaking about about this, I know that all lot of women are in this situation but it feels like there is still so much to learn about how to fight this all together!

    Thank you for reading this Katie!
    Have a lovely day
    Vic x

  6. Sandhy Pratama October 23, 2018 / 1:16 am

    I don’t have the precise same downside, however I do have secretion problems and needed to share with you. after I visited a naturopathic doc, she told American state my vitamins weren’t being absorbed by my body and showed American state which of them I need to be taking. Checking my website: https://luxurybeautymakeup.com/best-luxury-makeup-for-party/

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