Hello, 14 DPO. How are you today? I’m not very happy with you at the moment; let me tell you why:
I was rudely awakened at 4:45 this morning. Not by a ringing phone or a crying baby; nor was it by the banging and clanging produced as my husband so lovingly “attempts” to be quiet while getting ready for work. No, I was very rudely awakened by the rumbling in my belly, and I don’t mean the “I’m so hungry I could eat a hippo” kinda rumbling. (Now would probably be a great time to mention that one of the very few things I dislike about my quaint little house on post is that there is only one bathroom in it.) So I pull myself off the bed and walk to the bedroom door, opening it just in time to see Matthew stepping into the shower and pulling the curtain closed. Great. And while he has no trouble barging in and dropping a load while I’m in the shower and can’t escape, my self consciousness will not allow me to do it to him. (Damn you, Jiminy Cricket!) So I slunk back into the bed and lay there in the fetal position, miserably waiting for Matthew to finish up his “morning routine.” When I saw the bathroom light turn off through the crack I left in the bedroom door, I dragged myself slowly out of bed once more and into the kitchen to ask if he was done with the bathroom for a while. When he said he was, I bolted into the bathroom, flipping on the fan as I went in. Ahhhhh…….
So what precisely does my poopin’ problems have to do with why I am so unhappy with 14 DPO?? Because like many women, I am riddled with “tummy troubles” during my cycle. Remember earlier how I stated that the fluctuations of those pesky hormones throughout your cycle can affect lots of different things? Yes? Good. Well, one of the systems that are affected by the hormones is your digestive tract. Oh the many joys of womanhood, right?!
Now while it’s true that many, many women experience digestive upsets during their cycles, not every women will experience them at the same time as their neighbor might; the same could also be said for the same woman from cycle to cycle. After O, the corpus luteum (follicle that contained the egg before O) begins pumping out loads of progesterone to thicken the lining of the uterus and sustain any pregnancy achieved. This hormone is generally the one responsible for the plethora of PMS/early pregnancy symptoms (ie. fatigue, breast tenderness, hot flashes, and in my personal case, massive general bitchiness.) Another of the most common side effects of progesterone is that is naturally slows down the contractility of the smooth muscle of the digestive tract. Laymen’s terms: Increased progesterone in why you’re so plugged up during your TWW! Progesterone increases immediately after O; if pregnancy is not achieved, the level of progesterone will continue to slowly decrease until it reaches a level low enough to cause AF to show.
Once the level reaches a certain point, nasty little chemicals are released called prostaglandins. These little bastards are the critters responsible for causing the uterus to contract so it can shed it’s lining in the form of AF. They are also the culprit for the cramps most women experience at some point in their “period career.” What does this have to do with butt problems? These prostaglandins are also what cause your intestines to contract, which in turn gives you a case of the craps. Women who have IBS or other chronic tummy troubles tend to have more digestive upset than women who don’t. Fantabulous.
So. I told you all of that to tell you this: The reason that having to get up at the butt crack of dawn to “go” has started my day off on the completely wrong foot is because that tells me that AF is right around the corner. So before I even got started for the day, I knew that this TWW was over for me; it’s just a matter of time. So I tried to keep myself busy. A few loads of laundry, cleaning up behind the Tiny Tyrant all day, and a trip to Walmart for groceries and shower curtain rings – all before 5:00 at night. Yep, I’d say that’ll do it! Why not stay up til 2:00 in the morning cleaning the kitchen, sweeping and mopping the kitchen and bathroom, and hanging said shower curtain rings? Sounds like fun! (That last comment was simply oozing sarcasm!) Onto the next cycle, I suppose …