There are many women out there who simply refuse to go on this medication. I really didn't know much about it when my doctor suggested it as the treatment option I needed. I knew it brought on menopausal symptoms which is what I told Mr E and he gave me a prescription there and then for HRT (or add back as some of you call it) to help alleviate those symptoms. I trusted him as a doctor that he knew what he was talking about.
I had my first injection on October 13th 2008 and one have one every four weeks. After reading on the endo groups I am a part of on facebook I was glad I was having them every four weeks and not the longer lasting 3 monthly injection. I am not good with needles and when I saw how much liquid was being injected in to me I was not impressed. It really wasn't that much but like I said I don't like needles can you imagine what I would have thought if there was three times as much in there! My husband was with me and always the one to keep me calm made a big joke which made me laugh. Some people would probably kill him when he does things like this but for me it was just what I needed.
I had the injection in my left arm and it left my whole arm sore and achy. I hadn't returned to work yet since the surgery so I was able to go home and relax. Once home I did just that then started to get bored. I had towels that needed folding and putting away. So I went and folded them into a nice tidy pile picked up them all up and swiftly dropped them all. It was one of those laugh or cry moments and I had to laugh I was so tired of crying. The ache in my arm was like a had a dead arm and it just couldn't take the weight. I piled them back up and left them for my husband to carry upstairs to be put away.
Apart from the aching arm the first week was a breeze. Everything was normal nothing changed. Then after that the hot flashes and insomnia started. Wow the heat was amazing and one of my friends had bought me one of those hand held fans oh how I was thankful for that. I had started the HRT the same day I had the first injection and I like to think that it really did help with all the symptoms. I had hundreds of hot flashes it was winter and being wrapped up from the cold weather really wasn't needed I had my own internal (though broken) thermostat. We had been invited to a friends 50th birthday party and it was packed and the heat was too much to bear so I went and sat downstairs where it was quiet and cool. I am lucky to have good friends and husband and someone was sat downstairs with me the whole time. Sometimes they to were hot and needed to cool down but they stayed that bit longer to keep me company. I remember someone saying that they were having hot flushes due to the change and I said "yeah me too" to be told not to be so stupid I was way too young. That made me angry why would I say it if it wasn't true okay it wasn't real menopause but medically induced all the same in my book.
The insomnia was strange for me I had never had a problem sleeping before. Seriously I can sleep for 10 hours every night. I have always been like that, always needed a lot of sleep but never felt like I was actually getting enough. I had been to my doctor about it many a time.
Apart from the hot flashes the worst symptom for me was the emotions. One minute I would be fine then crying uncontrollably and then rage. When I say rage I mean rage! It was like I could have quite easily have killed someone or had a good go trying. That is so not my personality I would not harm anyone. Those emotions though they overwhelmed me and I had to fight hard to have at least some control. I had bought a pair of sketchers and was returning them as they didn't fit. The lady on the counter said they couldn't take them back as they had been worn. Those emotions were triggered and I had to fight to keep my hands by my side as I explained that that was what they were like when they were delivered and if you looked at the sticky labels that were still fully intact you could see that they hadn't been worn. It was a battle to remain normal but I managed it and I got my refund. The fresh air when I got outside the shop was just what I needed. I had many walks during this time the fresh air would help clear my head it just made me feel better.
My husband learned to stop asking if I was okay when I was crying he now knew it was just the side effects and that asking me how I was just made me angry. To be fair he was a saint during this time. He often went out and just left me be. That gave him a break as well as me. It was as hard for him as it was for me there was nothing he could do except for be there when I did need that cwtch (that's a hug by the way). I also learned that if he could put up with me like this at my worst he could put up with anything.
Lupron also caused joint and muscle aches and pains but I didn't really notice these so much. Probably because the pain I had been in before surgery had been so much worse. I compare all pain back to that now nothing touches it anymore. I sometimes get pain that is bad but rather than being a 10 it is more a 6 maybe a 7. I feel lucky in that way some women suffer that level of pain daily and worse. I almost forgot the night sweats waking up soaking in your own sweat there is nothing like it.
March 2nd 2009 I had the sixth and final injection it was a relief to know that they were all done. Now to just get through the next four weeks. Then to see how long the side effects would last and when my period would return. All the side effects gradually eased off the hot flashes were the ones that hung around the longest. My period returned in June and was "normal" I was crampy but it felt like that was how it was supposed to be. The Lupron had stopped my period I had just had one light one in early November that had only lasted four days.
Since the Lupron I have had no other treatment for endo. I have painkillers for when I need them and that is all. I also have, still, never been pregnant. The surgery and Lupron have not helped in that respect and this is what I have spent the last two years fighting for. To get someone to listen and hear me and help me become a mother. For my husband to be a father. And for the three of us to become a family. Maybe one day that dream may still come true I hold on to Hope.