I was 29 when I stopped taking hormonal birth control. I assumed my period would just start again within a few weeks. I was healthy and young. But, a few months later, my period was still nowhere in sight.
I waited a few more month, but still nothing…. for a looooong time.
I started to feel concerned. Scared even. Nervous what it would mean about my fertility, my ability to have children.
What was happening to my body? Had I forgotten how to build hormones? Was I infertile now?
I asked my doctor. Her response? “Well, that’s not good. Let’s put you back on birth control.”
Seriously? No thanks and good-bye.
I was pissed about having been on birth control for so long. Fifteen years of daily hormones!!! Why did I ever think it was okay to mess with my body for such a long time.
But, to be honest, I had never thought about it much until now that it was a problem. It’s what everyone else seemed to do. It’s what my doctor told me was totally fine.
When I first starting taking the pill at 14, I felt like it was a symbol of my maturity, proof that I was now a woman who knew things -closer to adulthood than childhood.
Then, it became the only “safe” way to make sure I wouldn’t end up pregnant unintentionally.
After I walked out of my fancy NYC OB’s office that day (never to return), I started to search the internet for answers.
I didn’t want anything harsh, no more pills, no more “interventions.”
I intuitively knew that I needed to support (not force) my body back into balance and I wanted to do this mindfully and naturally -at least for a while- to see what would happen.
I’ll save you all the details, but just know that I became OBSESSED with reading about hormones, devouring everything I could get my hands on about the woman’s body and menstrual cycle.
I signed up for an apprenticeship with (my now great friend and colleague) Nicole Jardim to become trained in analyzing women’s hormones and menstrual cycles. And shortly thereafter, I signed up for an intense one-year certification program with the Women’s Integrative Health Institute.
I wanted to talk to all of my friends (& let’s be real, strangers too;)) about their periods and their hormones, the importance of the right nutrition, managing their stress and setting better boundaries, the power of herbs, adaptogens, and supplements, the life-changing experience of tracking and living with the seasons of your cycle, and the fantastic freedom that comes with believing and trusting that your body is always on your side.
After a few months of doing this, my period came back. I literally cried –not because it was painful, but because I was so proud of my body.
I could feel that my body was shifting.
I could feel life coming back into it.
I could feel a rhythm returning that I must have known in my early teens, but didn’t remember.
Then came the challenge to make sure that my estrogen and progesterone were in a good balance and that, too, evened out after a two or three months of taking specific herbs and doing powerful visualizations.
The thought that I no longer had reason to worry about whether or not I’d be carrying a child one day, brought me to tears.
I felt such immense relief and gratitude.
Little did I know that all the information I had gathered and the understanding I developed for my body and its needs, would become instrumental during my pregnancies, in my postpartum days and while breastfeeding, and when my babies and I were ready to wean and I would hormonally return to having a “normal” cycle again.
I heavily relied on the tools that I gathered to heal my hormones post hormonal birth control, to support my hormones during the hormonal fluctuations that mark motherhood.
The results have been remarkable.
In many ways, I am now grateful that I was faced with hormonal imbalances before motherhood, because it now allows me to address the physical, emotional, and mental challenges that accompany the hormonal shifts I –& all mothers– experience, carefully, mindfully, and effectively.
If you want to know more about how you can support your hormones to be a better woman (& mother), I’d love to invite you to my FREE class on Wednesday, January 14th at 3pm EST/ 12 noon PST (a recording will be sent out afterwards if you cannot make it live).
Here’s what I am going to teach you:
1. Signs of a hormonal imbalance
2. Using your menstrual cycle as a window into your greater health
3. The effects of birth control on your hormones
4. How to create hormonal balance naturally
Learn more and sign up here. It’s free!