I take my final dose of birth control pill tonight. I’ve been on the pill since I was fifteen, using several different brands over the years. The past handful of years I’ve been using Yasmine, or Yaz. I plan on having the Essure procedure done in the near future, and after conversing with Bill about it, decided that I will just stop taking the pill now, rather than three months after the Essure procedure is performed (when they verify I’m sterilized).
On the one hand, I’m excited to see an abatement of the side effects of being on the pill. Yaz itself has been getting some bad press lately and I don’t know how much of that has to do with me, but I do know it’s pretty common to feel tiredness, anxiety, depression, and other symptoms while being on the pill for a long time. If going off the pill helps all of that, then great. I’m all for it.
I’m a little nervous about the Essure procedure itself, though. Mostly because my body is notorious for NOT behaving the way it’s supposed to, come surgery time. If there are complications to be had, I’m the girl that tends to get them. Plus the whole lack of responsiveness to anesthesia. Yeah, that’s always been fun for me.
Then there’s the reason that I went on the pill in the first place – and no, it wasn’t so that I could have sex with my boyfriend with immunity. No, I went on the pill to regulate a totally whacked out menstrual cycle. So if I go off the pill, will all of that nonsense (heavy cramps & bleeding, no period for MONTHS and then 30 straight days of bleeding) come back? If it does, do I want to try something along the lines of endometrial ablation to stop my periods? I mean, if I’m going to sterilize myself, I might as well go for the whole shebang, right?
Crossroad-type, once-in-a-lifetime, forever decisions like this just kind of aggravate me. I don’t plan on having children, and I don’t want to start all over again and go back down that parenthood road “one more time, from the top!” I don’t want to keep taking drugs and have been making very concerted efforts to lessen the amount of chemicals that I put in my body (I’ve stopped taking allergy meds, I’m no longer taking Prilosec, and I’ve been off antidepressants for a while now). Still there’s that nagging feeling – the day after the procedure, will I feel the regret after all, that I don’t anticipate feeling as of right now? Or will I just be relieved?
I do know that if one more “well meaning” person says to me, “You’re only thirty-five. There’s still plenty of time to change your mind,” I might have to punch them in the face. Right along with those people who scoff when I say I’ve already experienced motherhood, and could perform this sterilization procedure without feeling like I was missing out on something. “Yes, but you’ve never had children of your own,” they say. Sure, and YOU’VE never raised another person’s children AS your own, so get off your smug horse. The last person that said something like this to me, I shut right the hell up with, “So, you don’t think people who adopt are “real” parents, either?” Then walked away as they stammered.
People can be real assholes, sometimes.
I give myself permission to have regret. Really, I already have a little bit of regret – not that I don’t think my decision is the right one for me, but I am allowed to make that decision and feel sorry for the road not taken. Sorry that I will never know what kind of child a combination of my DNA with Bill’s would produce.
Perhaps the world is better off, at that.
Anyway, no response required if you aren’t inspired to do so. I just felt like writing about this somewhat momentous, yet anticlimactic, moment in my life. Just one last pill to swallow.