Mirena: the removal

After a very long and treacherous journey which has taken two years, I can finally talk after having come out of that dark tunnel. This is my story… and what is the conlusion of this story? If you feel like you need to get the Mirena coil removed, do it. Listen to your body, it knows better than your mind…

In July 2013 I got the Mirena IUD swiftly plopped into my uterus… it didn’t hurt really. I had done the stupid thing and looked it up on the internet before. So I was prepared for a bloody horror movie scene but in fact it was all very pleasant. I did take some painkillers an hour before hand which might have done the trick… Can I just say that before that point I was all up on my anti-hormone horse but after many consultations with doctors I was persuaded not to get the copper coil, but get the Mirena coil. The periods would be too heavy with the copper they said.

It all seemed okay ish, for the first couple of weeks there was always a bit of unwanted blood, but what you gonna do. Then I stopped getting periods. Which is whats expected and it was enjoyable! In August things went down hill for me, I became very unfamiliar in my own head and I started wanting to be alone quite a bit. I put this down to the fact that I had finished university a few months before hand and I was having a bit of a crisis with having to start adult life, and that is probably true too, maybe I wasnt happy in my relationship? But again there wasnt any particular reason to feel that way…. I decided the most logical thing to do would be to just leave the UK and go away to be on my own and adapt. SO I bought a one way ticket to New Zealand. Sounds a bit dramatic but it had been something I always wanted to do, so I just went for it.

New Zealand was insane, I had a job, a house, I got to become best friends with the cousins of mine whom I had never met. But, things did get worse for me, the days went by in a pixellated fuzz. I wrote a diary entry in December when I was at my worst and the only way I could describe my head at the time was as if I had “black sand clogging up my brain”, it felt like the ultimate brain fog. I found it hard to be around people and one day I even stayed in bed the whole day and I hardly moved, I was scared. I’d never done drugs but it’s what I imagined a bad trip would be like, except this trip didn’t end.

As the months went on I slowly started coping with the new me, unfortunately I put on weight developed terrible spots on my face, the worst it had ever been (that could be due to the diet, the foods so rich and good there!). With the help of some lovely people (who had no idea they were helping) I have some incredible memories from New Zealand. I got to meet my family who are awesome, and I made some life long friends. I make it sound like I was a pain to be with, but no one knew what was happening in my head. I don’t know how it happened but it stayed secret the whole time, until one of my best friends came over from the UK. I let her in on what was happening and showed her the diary entry I had written in December, desperate for someone to understand me. She cried reading it.

In August I moved back to Bristol UK to live with my partner again. That’s when we noticed more physical changes. My breasts were lumpy, as was my abdomen, and my sex drive had decreased – a lot. I still felt this mind fog but I like to think I had it under control, like my mind had bought a mini hand-held fan. I went to the gyno and I was told that I had cysts on my ovaries (which weren’t there before the coil). Thats when I knew it was most likely the coils fault, I felt happy to point fingers. It wasnt depression, it was a hormonal imbalance which I had chosen for my body.

I was so unhappy in Bristol, I would cry frequently and all I had in my head was swear words and negativity. That wasnt who I was. I was the person who you would never piss off, who would never say a bad word about anyone. But I found myself internally swearing at doors, benches and branches. Anything I didn’t like the look of. It was terrible. On the plus side I lost about 10 kilos and my skin went back to normal – I still put off getting the coil removed, hoping I would get better. At the end of the day it would be a great form of contraception if there were no side effects. The doctors and everybody else said that something with such a small amount of hormone would not do that to me. Yet each day that went by it got worse, as if it was magnifying… which biologically, makes sense. I then started doing some research and it seemed I was not alone.

My friend reached out to me in March 2015 and asked if I still had the Mirena, because she had to have hers taken out as she was really suffering with it. She wanted to know if I had any similar problems. After we had a big discussion about it I thought, Fuck it, let’s get it out. At this point I felt 99% confident that it was the coil doing this to me.

With a very supportive boyfriend by my side I made the appointment to get the Mirena removed in April 2015, just a few weeks ago. It didn’t hurt at all and my doctor who did it told me that she isn’t the hormone kind gal either and she swears by the copper one, that it is only bad if you have the ultimate heavy periods. Wish she had been the one I had my first consultation with…

So.. the results? Well, I felt instantly better knowing it wasnt in me. But physically the lumps in my body have gone down dramatically, and my sex drive has gone up. I am smiling a lot and genuinely laughing at things which I actually find funny now. I’m more interested in the people around me and I can engage so much better. During my Mirena era I got to the point where I would force myself to listen to people but I used to get so bored and negative my mind would wonder. But not anymore… I’m slowly getting myself back and it feels so good. I’m embarrassed to say that before I got the Mirena inserted I had never given mental illness/problems a second thought. It’s safe to say that’s changed. I genuinely believed I had severe depression. There was a constant sense of impending doom weighing my shoulders down. That was the lowest part of my life so far and anything from now on will be a joy compared to that mind fuck. I can’t describe to you how relaxed I feel now. Yes, it may well be a placebo effect to any of you cynics reading, but this placebo shit is good if that’s the case.

Girls.. if you feel like you’ve lost yourself, chances are it’s the Mirena. Just get it out. Go and make the appointment now. I’ve only had mine out a few weeks and the changes are amazing, I’m looking forward to the journey ahead and getting back to who I know best and who I love.

So whats the plan now? I’m going to let my body settle down over the next couple of months, then I’m getting the copper coil inserted… I’m waiting for the day that men can take the contraceptive pill. What a day that will be.