- (Turn and face the stranger)
- Don’t want to be a richer woman
- Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes (Turn and face the stranger)
- Just gonna have to be a different woman
- Time may change me
- But I can’t trace time – apologies to David Bowie for ch-ch-changing Man to Woman
The change (as my mother so eloquently put it) came fast, furious, and EARLY for me. Sometime in my late 30’s I remember standing behind the espresso bar at a coffee shop where I worked with sweat pouring down my face asking if anyone else was hot. Granted the espresso bar was somewhere between 190 – 200 degrees farenheit, but I wasn’t making anyone’s coffee. I made it through those days (although sometimes I wonder how my family put up with me), figuring that I had been through the worst of it.
I hadn’t. While the hot flashes and mood swings were tough, what I found even harder was my changing body, lack of sleep, my memory loss and lack of desire. I no longer felt feminine, instead of looking cute and petite – I felt just as wide as I was tall, and I could care less if Brad Pitt was standing uncomfortably close to me. I had been reading Suzanne Somers and Robin McGraw, met women who looked amazing and asked them how they look and feel so young (most were much older than I) and done my fair share of research. Over and over again I would hear the response: I’m taking bioidentical hormones.
When my BFF “A” (from The Review Broads) complained about the same symptoms, I smartly told her about bioidentical hormones. I talked the talk so much that she went to a doctor and got her prescriptions for progesterone, estrogen and testosterone creams, but did I? NOPE! I just kept reading and talking about them, but took NO ACTION. After TWO YEARS of going on about how “I should get my hormones tested” I finally bit the bullet and went to a BodyLogicMD doctor in Fort Lauderdale.
I don’t know WHY I put it off, maybe I was afraid of the testing for hormone balance or HOW I’d feel after being on the hormones (I tend to be extremely drug sensitive), but the entire process has been easy and LIFE CHANGING. Whether you’re entering perimenopause, are menopausal or like me POST menopausal there are simple solutions.
Blood test – no biggie, just like any other blood test (maybe a few more vials, but it’s quick)
Saliva test – when faced with four vials to SPIT into, I panicked a little. How was I going to have to 1/2 fill these bottles with my saliva? Surprisingly it was easier (and more fun) than I thought it would be, although each took about 20 minutes or so to do. Thankfully I only have to fill half of ONE for future tests.
I arrived in Fort Lauderdale at Dr. Thakrey’s office with butterflies in my stomache. Located in a medical building, I entered the office and was greeted by the doctor’s receptionist, a woman of about my age who made me feel completely at ease. Of course the seven or so pages of forms to fill out helped to keep my mind off the wall of supplements that lined the walls (was I going to have to take dozens of vitamins each day?).
Dr. Thackrey emerged with an outstretched hand and a warm, genuine smile…making me feel like it was all going to be alright. Nerves were gone as he proceeded to walk me into his office and ask me the questions I expected
- Family history
- Medical history
- What differences had I noticed since going through menopause
- Were there things that BOTHERED me more post-menopause
- What did I expect to get out of using bioidenticals
Then he pulled out my chart. The one with all of the findings from my many vials of blood and four half-vials of saliva.
Surprisingly, I was in MUCH better shape than I had expected. All of the usual medical issues that my regular doctor takes care of like thyroid, cholesterol, etc. were on target. Still, Dr. Thackrey took the time not only to go over these results, but to tell me exactly where within the acceptable range I fell. He also explained what each of them meant in terms of my age, my hormones, and more. THEN IT CAME…the results of my saliva test.
Now, I understand that this is a science. I understand that he can tell if my progesterone is low, my testosterone and estrogen are within range (but on the line), but THE FACT that he could tell WHAT TIME OF DAY I WAS STRESSED OUT by my Cortisol test was CRAZY. He asked what happened at 4 pm on the day I took my saliva test. Amazingly, that’s the time I had a very stressful phone call. IT SHOWED MY STRESS LEVEL AS BEING OFF THE CHARTS, while the rest of the day was fine.
He went over the remedies for my hormone replacement, including vitamins D3, fish oil, etc. to keep me healthy. He also took into consideration that my mom had passed away from breast cancer, so he felt that since my estrogen level was within range (although low), it wasn’t worth the risk to put me on it right now.
I made my next appointment before leaving and was told that I would be contacted by the pharmacy.
I love the pharmacy that BodyLogicMD uses. My meds (including vitamins if I want) come straight to my door every month. I was expecting them to cost a FORTUNE (since they aren’t covered by my health insurance), but that wasn’t the case at ALL. For LESS than I pay for my cut & color each month, I was going to feel GREAT.
USING THE MEDS
I’m using 2 bioidenticals – progesterone and testosterone. The rest (DHEA, Vitamin D, thyrosol and Fish Oil) are just supplements that I take with breakfast or before bed. The hormones come in measured syringes in cream form, making it easy to measure our.
- Progesterone – 1 mg. of the cream rubbed in on either my inner thigh or upper arm – before bed
- Testosterone – 1 mg. of the cream on a soft skin area in the morning
That’s how easy it is.
I have to preface this by saying that I’ve only been using them for about a month and a half so far, but here’s what I’ve experienced so far.
SLEEP – glorious sleep. After being unable to sleep well since going through menopause (18 years ago) I finally fall asleep and stay asleep NATURALLY. If NOTHING else comes of this it will all be worthwhile. Sleep (or lack of) effects everything thing that we do, as a result I haven’t been at my peak performance for MANY years. Life has changed!!
DESIRE – Do you REALLY want to know this? If not…move on to the next paragraph. Let’s just say that I’m NOTICING again. How’s that?
MY BODY – I’m losing weight. Yes, I’m on Nutrisystem, but for the past MANY years my weight loss efforts have been TOUGH…VERY TOUGH. My weight is not falling off naturally, I have to work at it, but unlike my attempts in the past – it’s actually coming off at a good rate. My last few weight loss attempts averaged 1/2 to 1 lb. a MONTH, now I’m losing that EVERY WEEK.
MY SKIN – Again, I’m being vigilant about taking care of my skin with some GREAT products like Sibu and Eucerin. Still, not only do I have a NEW GLOW, but I notice that my skin is looking younger.
So far, I’m more than pleased…I’m ecstatic about what hormone therapy from BodyLogicMD has done so far. My goal is to keep you updated with my ongoing progress. What I can tell you is that it’s RIDICULOUS to suffer with the side effects of peri-menopause, menopause or post-menopausal symptoms when there’s an EASY and natural solution.
WHERE TO GO
- Check BodyLogicMD’s website to find a doctor near you – http://www.bodylogicmd.com/
If you have any QUESTIONS that you’d like me to address from a PATIENT’S perspective, please use the contact form. I can include them in future posts.