Mittelschmerz. It's a fancy name that I'm pretty sure I'm not pronouncing properly. Mit... Tel... Sch... Merz... Sounds exotic. Where is this foreign place? Are there Germans there?
Well, I've Googled it and it's definitely not a place. It's not even the name of a tasty German sausage. It's actually a really difficult-to-say medical word for ovulation pain. Yes, they have a really difficult to say medical word for ovulation pain. Who knew?
For those who don't have ovulation pain, this post may not interest you. For those who do -- this is most definitely for you. I want you to know you're not alone in your pain and frustration or in your search (every 17 days) to cure your regular bitch pain.
Let's break it down, thanks to Mayo Clinic Staff:
Mittelschmerz is one-sided, lower abdominal pain associated with ovulation. German for "middle pain," mittelschmerz occurs midway through a menstrual cycle -- about 14 days before your next menstrual period.
In most cases, mittelschmerz doesn't require medical attention. For minor mittelschmerz discomfort, over-the-counter pain relievers and home remedies are often effective. If your mittelschmerz pain is troublesome, your doctor may prescribe an oral contraceptive to stop ovulation and prevent midcycle pain.
For those who don't have it, let me give you a visual...
It's 17 days since your last period started. You've shed bloody stuff from your lady bits for seven days straight, you've cramped up, you've eaten shitloads of whatever your hands could get a hold of and every morning you've woken up wanting to wear white pants and then you've restrained yourself from wearing white pants. It's been fun, hasn't it? Now you're on your 10 days of peace and you will get to enjoy those 10 whole days of freedom to wear white pants if you want.
Then it happens.
Day 17 arrives and you wake up with little wind-like pains. Nothing major. You have your coffee and breakfast (if you're lucky) and your pains turn themselves up a notch. Did the milk in my coffee give me gas, am I lactose intolerant? -- you start thinking to yourself, even though this has happened on Day 17(ish), on and off, for the past 20+ years.
The discomfort continues to intensify and before you know it you're bent over thinking: "Is this appendicitis or the work of the devil himself?" It is only once you're curled up in the foetal position that your brain finally clicks over, slaps you across the face and reminds you it's Day 17 and this is actually your monthly ovulation pain. Sometimes it doesn't get to that point and you get through Day 17 just thinking you need a decent fart, and then sometimes it's so intense you vomit from the pain... as was the case for me seven days ago -- and I'm still suffering.
Countless emergency hospital trips as a young girl and doctors appointments as an adult have all ruled out anything sinister. I've been (mis)diagnosed as having acute and then chronic appendicitis, endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease and polycystic ovaries but not with polycystic ovarian syndrome -- because I'm not obese or hairy and clearly have no problem having children.
It's just "one of those things" they say. Really? Really? "Here, take this hormone-infested pill until menopause," they say. Even though I've had a deep vein thrombosis, even though they make me sick, even though they make me crazy, even though our family history says "no" to the pill.
Mittelschmerz. We are not friends. You are the bane of my life and I wish you were just a yummy German sausage. Worse still is, 10 days after you've entered my life, tortured me and stopped me from functioning like a normal human being, you leave me and release yourself from my body and I'm back to day one of my cycle.
Here we go again...