Monthly Archives: July 2017

Birth Control

I used Implanon/Nexplanon for five years. I loved this BC so much I got a second round, after my first expired after three years. I removed my second round a year early because my husband and I want to expand the family. I am a huge fan of Nexplanon, and I share it with every woman who mentions birth control to me.

It was 100% free to me, under my insurance and with Obamacare’s free birth control deal.

No, it’s not comfortable having it inserted, but it’s brief and you don’t have to fuss with it for three years! No pills, rings, shots, forgetting it and causing irregularity… Nothing. No fuss, no muss. Just fifteen minutes of a numbing shot, a teensy incision, and clean up. No big deal.

I have four scars: two insertion polka dots, and two 1/8″ extraction lines. They’re all in a 2 inch square area on the inside of my left upper arm. I don’t consider it an issue, no one ever notices it, they don’t show up in pictures.

My first round, I had three period in three years. For me, this was excellent for multiple reasons including solving my pretty serious iron-deficient anemia. I got to keep my much-needed blood! Also, no periods, whoooooo.

My second round, I had a period every four months or so. I also had… well, boob soreness. I researched a ton, and it’s a normal side effect. I didn’t really like it, wasn’t a fan of it. Maybe my body got used to the hormones from the implant, I don’t know, but this was only an issue four and a half years into using this method. They didn’t hurt, but they were, you know, sore, heavy feeling.

I did not gain weight. I know many women have concerns with hormone deals like birth control, but my experience was zero weight gain.

I’ve had it out for three months now, and my period went immediately back to normal- better than normal. I’ve had three periods, all exactly 27 days apart, and all lasted two-ish days (two days plus one day of leftover sludge, you know the stuff). That’s better than my period was before birth control! So, no concerns there. Not pregnant yet, but my periods have been perfectly regular.

Five stars, two thumbs up, whatever method you prefer to rate things, I loved implanon/nexplanon (they changed the name, but like same thing). Highly recommend.

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Bug Bites

So, right now sucks pretty seriously…. Monsoon season, whoooo! My right knee looks like The Blob, you can’t even see my knee cap at all, it’s so fluid-puffed. My left knee is more visible, you can see the top curve. Fingers are slow and fat, and I’m generally just very… bogged down right now.

An unexpected side effect of all this extra-over-active immune system BS: overreaction to ant bites.

I was out scooping poop in the back yard, since the temperature is only in the high 80s right now, and apparently there’s a bit of an ant problem. I have never, ever reacted badly to insect bites of any kind- they’re annoying, sure, but I’ve never swelled up or even really itched. Right now, with my little terrorists on hyperdrive, my three ant bites just blew up. I have one that is red and raised the size of a nickel and the other two are about dime-sized. Ridiculous.

Heaped on some hydrocortisone cream and mini-chugged some kids’ zyrtec, got an ice pack on the area. I’m sure it’ll be fine.

I am 26 and have been dealing with Lupus my entire life, from my mom to my sister and me, and it still manages to throw me little surprises. Keeps life interesting, I guess…

Determination

Determination. Got things to do – people to see – work to deliver. Yesterday, I joined my husband at a local restaurant and our daughter along with her boyfriend, joined us. I had a “spell.”  That’s my word for something weird happened, but not enough of something for me to go to the hospital.

There were physical and mental things happening, but nothing too serious.

No hospital. Why? Because I’ve been often enough to where I know/intuit what they can investigate and what might be life threatening and what is just my lupus body being weird. Very little is more disheartening than being told “Yeah, you seem to have something wrong with you, but nothing we can find. As you are allergic to most pain meds, take some Advil and don’t call us.” I don’t take unreasonable risks.

The determination in the title comes in this morning. I have goals; I have a job. I got up, slowly, and got to my office for work – the commute up the hall is brutal. real story. I also made it to my physical training. I was 5 minutes late and went very slowly. low weight with fewer reps. But I did it. A couple of hours later, I felt back to “normal.”  Maybe a little exhaustion like the body went through some hard, physical labor yesterday, but that’s all.

My conditions may get me down from time to time, but they are not taking me down without an epic battle. So far, I’m winning.  Yeah, I change up the plan, but don’t we all?  It’s not giving up the end goal, it’s just changing tactics according to the environment changing around us to get to the goal in the best manner possible.

Pleased to be your Queen!

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This past week, I competed in the Mrs. USA Universal pageant in Reno, NV. You may recall, that I have competed in two prior pageants starting just last year – Mrs. AZ America and Woman of Achievement. LOVED all experiences.

 

 

I started because I needed to lose weight. I am not saying skinny is healthy, nor am I saying overweight is unhealthy – but my extra weight is unhealthy. It is diabetic weight. I do NOT want to be diabetic and I had about 50 pounds to lose. I have lost 34. woot woot!

Due to losing weight, eating healthy, and being more active – I am now building muscle and am off what was supposed to be lifetime meds – plaquenil and methotrexate. Can we say “good googli moo?!” This is amazing progress. And I feel better than ever!

The pageants motivate me. I don’t lose weight to compete, I compete to lose weight. And I was the highest scoring woman over 45, so I won Ms. North America Universal Elegance (Elegance being their new division for over 45 years old). I came incredibly close to placing overall, competing against young, gorgeous, intelligent, talented women. I felt like I held my own and not totally a fish out of water.

In fact, I am DANG proud of how I did.

and now I get to go to London to compete for Ms. Universal Elegance. Regardless of how I do there, I now represent this fabulous continent from Mexico to Canada. wow.

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K Royal (@heartofprivacy)