Tag Archives: Health & Hygiene

Periods Are The Worst

Warning: this post is grosser than usual. Don’t read it.

I woke up at 7 this morning with unbelievable stomach pains. I was still a little drunk so my first reaction was, “Oh, beer shits.” I contemplated getting up but decided I was too lazy – I toughed it out and tried to go back to sleep. Then it dawned on me that the Jarry Poutine (for those unfamiliar, it’s a delicacy made of fries, thick gravy and cheese curds, topped with smoked meat) I had a mere few hours earlier was probably trying to sneak its way out. I almost got up but again chose to stay in bed. As my stomach ache worsened, I realized that the pain wasn’t caused by either of those things – I had my period. And I’d completely forgotten about it. I hadn’t strapped one of those nighttime pads (or ‘horse pads’ as my friend Bianca calls them) on before going to bed and I’d slept in my underwear. Before I could even consider the potential mess I’d made of my sheets, I freaked out and ran to the bathroom.

To my surprise, my undies were clean. There was no blood in the bowl, either. I thought this was incredibly weird but was like, “Whatever, I don’t have time to deal with this” (even though in retrospect I had ample time). I reached for a tampon and began sticking it in. For some reason, I had trouble. This annoyed me so I just stuck it in harder because like I said, there was no time. I then realized that I had possibly drunkenly forgotten to take my tampon out before going to bed. And that I was therefore wearing two super absorbency tampons. Holy shit. I nervously felt around for two strings but could only locate one. I guess that reassured me so I went back to bed.

But now I’m really scared. Did I lose a tampon in me? Is that even possible? I googled it (it seems to be a very popular question, by the way) and answers vary. Health sites seem to say that it can’t happen, whereas people on Yahoo Answers insist it can. I know the peeps on Yahoo aren’t remarkably intelligent (see: how is babby formed?) but I think I’m gonna have to side with them on this one for no reason whatsoever.

I’m hoping my vag will just push this bad boy out itself. I remember once I really had to take a shit at work. As many of you know, I don’t use public washrooms for anything other than peeing. Ever. That’s how bad I had to poop that day. My stomach was killing me; I was hunched over and sweating all over my desk. So I marched right to the last stall, ready to face my fear. Well, I ended up sitting there for a while. Nothing was coming out. So I pushed really, really hard. I was making a scrunched-up face and everything. Then I FINALLY passed something. It was a tiny Plop! sound but a plop nonetheless. I looked in the bowl and to my surprise, I’d pushed out a tampon, not a poop. I didn’t even know I was wearing a tampon! I actually started laughing all by myself. I can only imagine how insane I must have seemed to other employees in the bathroom.

So yeah, I guess I’ll try to handle this sitch on my own but I could also really use some advice. Am I freaking out over nothing? I honestly can’t remember if I’d taken my tampon out or not. I might have. Should I go see my gyno? I don’t feel like it.

Help. Love,
-Melissa

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Murphy’s Law

As if my life weren’t shitty enough, I now have a cyst the size of a golf ball hidden in my upper thigh, near where it connects to my vagina. It’s not really visible so I’m not even sure how long I’ve had it – if it wasn’t for the seam of my new jeans rubbing against it, I wouldn’t even have noticed it. I never got a cyst before but I made like a million people touch it and everyone’s confirming that that’s what it is. It kind of feels like a Super Ball, all bouncy and rubbery. It’s freaking me out.

Thanks to Wikipedia, I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s either a dermoid cyst (which I read as DEMONOID cyst) or a sebaceous cyst. The dermoid variety can contain anything from long ass strands of hair to nails, eyes and even teeth. I’ve been told that a character in My Big Fat Greek Wedding had a cyst with teeth but I never watched that movie because I have good taste (sorry, Nicole). Now I’m thinking up all these ridiculous scenarios in which the cyst is planning on chewing its way out of my thigh, or in which it’s staring at my vagina. It has a mind of its own, you guys! The sebaceous cyst is a little more tame, containing not much more than sebum, an oily substance.

In either case, I’m probably going to have to have this bad boy surgically removed. Before I go to the doctor’s, my mom instructed me to try to get rid of it on my own, by dipping a cloth in hot water and bleach and applying it to the cyst. She told me that the water has to be super hot and that I have to press on the cyst really hard for about fifteen minutes, to melt it or something. Well, I ended up using water so hot that I burned the entire area and pressing so hard that I bruised myself. Now it hurts like hell when I walk. FML.

My aunt told me that I should dip white bread in hot milk and apply it to the cyst. Apparently that will make it burst and whatever it contains will rise up out of me. It’s like when you put a bowl of milk to someone’s ass and worms come out. Or maybe it isn’t like that at all? Maybe I have no idea what I’m talking about.

Here’s what the inside of a demonoid cyst looks like. Ew!

-Melissa

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Fetal Homicide

I can’t believe I missed this! I’m catching up on my Savage Love podast listening (thanks again, Dee) and apparently, a bill was recently passed in Utah that would make it illegal for a woman to miscarry. The “reckless act” that leads to the miscarriage (being a victim of domestic violence, for example) could be considered criminal homicide and the woman in question could face life in prison. This is beyond insane. One in four women have miscarriages! And like Dan (the host) said, how is Utah going to keep track of pregnant women? Compulsory tests? The uterus police? Apparently, this all stems from a case in which a 17 year old girl paid someone $150 to beat her until she lost her baby. I suppose the first solution Utah thought of would be to criminalize all such acts (though really, how often does this happen?) but wouldn’t it have been easier to, oh, I don’t know, MAKE LEGAL ABORTIONS MORE ACCESSIBLE? Also, Dan went on to explain that a pregnant woman in Iowa fell down the stairs and found herself jailed for two days for “suspected feticide”. K, I really hate the world now. Like even more than before. Thankfully, I doubt the Utah law will be approved (it’s currently awaiting the governor’s signature), but just the very idea of people with authority backing it up is frightening. Remind me never to move to the Mormon State. Or Iowa. Not that I would ever do that, but you know.

Read more here.

-Melissa

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Hi There

I’m posting because cute, completely unexpected fan mail inspired me to. Now, you may be wondering what I’ve been up to during my absence. To be perfectly honest, I’ve been having Golden Girls marathons, eating Costco-sized Toblerone bars and napping. Oh, and I was in Cuba for a while. I’ll post pictures of that when I find my camera’s USB wire thingie (never).

Here’s a recent development: I’m on anti-depressants. Don’t worry, I may be sarcastic, cynical and an overall hater of everything, but I’m not depressed. They were prescribed to me for my stomach problems. I thought I had Crohn’s disease or an ulcer or something like that, but my doctor seems convinced that my tummy lacks serotonin. The pills are working well but they have crappy side effects. I’m sleepy, I have a constant mini-headache and sometimes I start sweating in weird places! I don’t like that.

I’m supposed to take the pills for what I guess is a month-long trial period. I don’t think I’ll renew my prescription when the time comes. I just feel weird about having to take medication every day for the rest of my life. I also read that coming off Cipralex is a real bitch so I’d rather not get too into it.

So by the next time I see my doctor, I’ll be back to square one. I’ll just have to live with these excruciating, stabbing pains. Ugh. I actually dropped a class on my first day of school this semester because my stomach hurt really bad and was making loud, disgusting (albeit somewhat funny) fart noises.

Anyway, that was just a quick note to prove that I’m still alive.

I hope everything is good with you guys!

-Melissa

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Gyno Goosebumps

gynoI hate going to the gynecologist. I know some of the ladies reading this have never gone, so I thought I’d describe a typical appointment for you. I’m so kind. For the sake of simplicity, I’ll refer to the gyno as a ‘he’ in this post. Yes, my gyno is a man. Yes, I think it makes the whole thing super awkward, but he’s thorough and helpful. That’s what matters. Also, please keep in mind that I’m not some sort of gynecological master. I’m not familiar with all the medical vocab and whatnot; I’m just discussing the experience from my point of view.

OK, I don’t know what it’s like at all gyno offices, but at mine, you show up on time for your appointment and are seen about 3 hours later. Bring reading material, unless you wanna check out genital wart pamphlets (which are admittedly pretty informative). The first thing they do is take your blood pressure, which is no biggie. I actually like it. Sometimes I stick my arm in the blood pressure machine thing at the pharmacy. I’m like an old person like that.

So, after that fun experience, you’re sent to a little investigation room. I know that ‘investigation’ is the wrong word here, but whatever, the gyno is basically investigating your vagina. He’s like a private eye for your private parts. You’re told to take off your pants and underwear and cover yourself with a big paper square. I realize this is intimidating so take deep breaths, relax a little and just get it over with. My old gyno would always barge in as I was de-pantsing. So rude. That’s one of the reasons why I stopped seeing her.

The first time I went to the gyno, I hadn’t had sex yet. If this situation applies to you, you’re in luck! You might not have to go through the discomfort of a pap test. Basically, what happens is you get your boobs felt up. Then you get fingered (don’t worry; he uses gloves and lots of lube). And that’s it, you can leave after.

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Mood Swings

Success! Nicole sent us an e-mail with a post. Thank heavens for her; I’ve been slacking off like crazy here. In all fairness, this has been an absolutely awful week. I learned that I need to find myself a new job, I missed a birth control pill so now I have my period for an extra week and a half, Slayer postponed their show here, and I have swine flu. Well, that’s debatable – but calling it Swine Flu makes my boring, everyday cold sound kind of exotic, no? It’s a really bad cold, though. My father just asked me if I have “H1N2N”. Anyway, Nicole wants to talk about mood swings, so here we go.

whatshapThis is an extension of Melissa’s post about weird panic attacks because of the pill. So for the past while, I guess about a year or two, I’ve been getting really terrible, sometimes unmanageable mood swings. I used to bottle them up and not let anybody know about them, but for the past year, it’s been really hard. If someone is pissing me off, I have a hard time not getting snappy with them. It gets to the point where I have to avoid their gaze, clench my jaw as tight as I can, and just keep my mouth shut, because I’m afraid of saying something that I really shouldn’t. The person this happens most with is my mom. I love her dearly, but she’s the one who gets on my nerves the most. Is that normal? Sometimes I wish I could just tell her to fuck off and leave me alone, but she’s always too emotional for her own good, and it makes me the bad guy, in every situation.

I’d like to know if this happens to anyone else, on the pill or not. These mood swings make me really uncomfortable in many situations. And they come on unexpectedly, like I really don’t know when in my cycle I should expect them. I know during my cycle I have hormonal fluctuations, and peak periods, but these swings don’t seem to follow a specific pattern. I have strong emotions and sometimes anger management is out the window, as in I have very little, if any, control over my rage. It’s gotten my into trouble many times in the past, and although I try to control for it, I don’t see it getting much better anytime soon.

Anybody have any suggestions? What pills and/or birth control do you ladies use? I’m on Yasmin 28, and I’m wondering, since it’s the highest estradiol level pill (apparently) if it’s totally screwed my hormones and sent them out of whack.

Ahhh.

-Your much loved guest speaker.

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Panic Attacks

Wikipedia says that, “Experiencing a panic attack is said to be one of the most intensely frightening, upsetting and uncomfortable experiences of a person’s life.” That’s completely true. I can’t even find the words to describe how bad panic attacks feel. It’s almost like you’re stuck in a different dimension and you’re trying to escape but an intensely strong, invisible force keeps pulling you back in. For lack of a better description, it’s total chaos.

I had my first attack about a year and a half ago. I can’t even remember how I handled it. I thought I was having a nervous breakdown. I went from happy to scared shitless within seconds. It’s as though a layer of fear wrapped itself around me. I felt totally trapped. I was dizzy and couldn’t breathe. I tried to take long, deep breaths but my lungs wouldn’t let me. My heart felt like it was gonna jump out of my chest. Worst of all, I felt like I didn’t have any control over myself.

I’ve suffered many, many attacks since then. My episodes have gotten less severe, but they last a lot longer. I had one last night over several hours. I got up this morning, showered and got some green tea, hoping that these things would make me feel better. They didn’t. I still feel like my body is reeling from the worst fight-or-flight reaction it was ever faced with.

I used to assume that my panic attacks were caused by stress. I’ve always been the type of person to worry for no reason. I also juggle more commitments than I can handle. Still, as stressed as I can be, I’ve always dealt with it really well. So I decided to conduct an investigation of sorts. I started keeping a little panic attack calendar. The results were startling! I realized that my episodes are most likely caused by something other than stress: the pill.

I can pretty much predict my panic attacks nowadays. They happen after every period, when I switch from the placebos to the regular pills. They always happen in the middle of the night, too, presumably because I take my pill pretty late (around 9 or 10 p.m.).

I looked it up and it seems as though this is happening to a lot of women. The pill apparently heightens anxiety, which can trigger panic attacks.

I’m not sure what to do at this point. I almost want to get off oral birth control. I could switch pills, but it’ll be the third time I do that. I’m fed up. The panic attacks were all pretty traumatic for me and I really, really don’t want to have another one. At the same time, how do I know that when I get off the pill, the attacks will stop? Maybe I’m fucked for life. I don’t know. I’m freaking out.

Coincidentally, I’m seeing my gyno soon (I hate him but whatever). I’ll ask him about all this. In the meantime, have any of you ladies ever suffered from this? What do you think I should do?

-Melissa

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