The Post-Pregnancy You, Part II

Who knew I’d have more things to add to this list?

As I’ve mentioned on my previous entry (you can read it here), pregnancy is a life changing experience. Your body works overtime to produce a baby (or two), then shit gets real after it sends out the eviction notice. Mood swings, baby weight that doesn’t go away as easily as it did before, hormones, changes in your body, aching boobs, dependency on coffee – the list goes on. A couple of changes that are also worth talking about: birth control and periods. Sorry, my fellow male readers. This might not be the entry you’re looking for. Move along.

Two days after my girls were born, the OB team from the Labor and Delivery department at the hospital stopped by my room and asked me what my plan was for birth control. I just had my two babies taken out of my body 12 weeks early, do I really look like I’m thinking about birth control right now? My external dialogue, though, was among the lines of “I used the pill for 10 years, I think I’ll go back on that.” However, since I was planning on breastfeeding the girls for as long as I could, I was informed that it would not be a good choice because of the hormone estrogen. It messes with your milk supply. My other options were the mini-pill (known for being a tad unreliable), an IUD (I didn’t want anything going up my vag anytime soon), or the nexplanon implant (makes sense, it was 2016, why not have an implant?). I was tired, the idea of an IUD kinda scared me, and being terrified of needles, the idea of an implant kinda freaked me out. I ended up going with the nexplanon implant, though. The OB team highly recommended it because it goes in your arm, you can’t see it, you’ll forget it’s there, doesn’t need to be messed with and can’t come out on its own, and it’s good for 3 years. Also, no estrogen. It contains only 68mg of etonogestrel that is released over time. It’d be a wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am insertion.

So, with my decision being made, the doctors were very excited about my choice and made an appointment for me to go get it on December 28th, a mere 10 days after I gave birth. Yeah, because I’d really think about having sex while worrying about my premature babies, bleeding like it was going out of style, or easily mistaken for a balloon. I still looked really pregnant, so I got weird glances from people in the lobby and even got asked by the nurse if I was still pregnant. Yeah, I’m super pregnant and I’m getting a birth control implant put in my body to save me time. Again, my external dialogue did not match what my brain was projecting, and I simply told her about the whole week and a half I had just had.

I’m forever grateful that my sister, Carolina, was there with me. We both don’t remember why, but we laughed so hard while waiting for the doctor to come in that we were afraid we’d get shushed or kicked out. She watched the whole thing – from me getting local anesthesia to the insertion of the implant with a staple-like apparatus. Me? I refused to look.

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Me and Carolina waiting for the doctor to come in. No, we are not twins, we’re 18 months apart.

After it was all said and done, I waited for my body to “return to normal” from all the postpartum bleeding. I was told my periods would be very light, or I’d have none at all, but that could take up to a year to happen. A FREAKING YEAR. After my postpartum bleeding was over, I had an insanely long period – a whole month. Irritated, I headed to my OB, who gave me three packs of the mini-pill to take along with having my implant. She said it’d help my body understand how a period is supposed to work and regulate it. Well, it did just that. I didn’t have my period for almost 2 months after taking my last pack (I took a pregnancy test every week just to make sure I’m not part of the 1% that gets pregnant on the implant). I was happy and felt so free… Until about 2 weeks ago. Seemingly never-ending, annoying spotting.

Thinking back, I kind of wish I had gotten the Mirena IUD instead of the implant. Sure, they’d have to go up in there and possibly dilate me to place it in, but I had just gone through being dilated and having my cervix checked a few times (painful) and I could do it again. I also wonder if not having the extra estrogen hormone has thrown my Bipolar I into a crazy frenzy. I’ve been a lot angrier than I’ve ever been, my moods are all over the place, and my medication doesn’t seem to be having the same awesome effect it had on me prior to pregnancy. Either that or pregnancy, the life changing experience, has also messed with that department. Who knows? I see an OB appointment in my future.

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Got my birth control implant like an adult, used a Darth Vader band-aid. Classic Camila.

In the end, while pregnancy has changed a lot about me, I’ve come to embrace who this new Camila is. She’s tough, has no problem speaking her mind, is still open-minded and tolerant, and drinks a lot more coffee than she used to. These changes were absolutely worth the two precious babies that caused them all, and I’d never take any of it back. Except maybe the implant. But we’ll see if this annoying spotting goes away.

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