Coming off the pill: How I got my cycle back
It’s been a while since I wrote this post on coming off the pill so I thought it’s about time for an update - I also wanted to share with you what I did to support my body to return to a normal cycle because I get emails about it all the time!
I want to make it clear that I am no expert on the matter – I’m simply sharing what worked for me in the hope other women in similar situations find it helpful.
To make a long story short, in the year after coming off the pill I had several periods, none of them regular. My cycle length ranged from 35 to 100 days. Fun! It took a year for things to get back on track - almost 12 months to the day since I stopped taking oral contraceptives, my cycle returned in a more regular way and now I’ve had four cycles of 30 – 32 days. Yay!
I read and researched and asked questions and tried a heap of things to support my body to find balance.
So here’s a run down of what was supportive for me:
- I saw a doctor of Chinese medicine (if you’re in Perth, go and see her! Amy is amazing, so much so that I interviewed her!) who gave me herbs and acupuncture to help my body heal itself.
- I supplemented (fairly) regularly with Vitex, omega 3, and B vitamins
- My last cycle was a couple of days longer than the previous ones and when I mentioned this to my lovely friend Erin at an essential oils workshop she was holding she suggested I try the Clary Clam blend from doTERRA. I put on my arms and chest and that evening, my period arrived. Maybe coincidence, but there are many similar stories out there about this blend and it’s worth a go if you have hormonal imbalances. I’ve just ordered myself several bottles!
- I ate heaps of veggies – veggies make up the majority of my diet and keep me feeling healthy and happy. I can’t remember the last time I was sick! I also make sure I include protein and good fats and limit sugar (which can mess with hormones).
- I reduced stress by making sure I make time for stillness every day. I love meditating so much and it’s made me a healthier and happier lady! I also try to do one thing at a time with focus, instead of doing 10 at a million miles an hour which keeps me feeling calmer and more grounded.
- I started going to bed earlier. These days I’m in bed by 10 most nights and I feel SO much better for it. A well-rested body is a healthy body. Keeping my phone in another room for the night has made a big difference to the quality of my sleep – I keep my charger in my office so it gets plugged in there over night. No more late nights thanks to Instagram scrolling and no more stressful mornings where I read my emails when I’m half asleep. Make your bedroom a phone free zone, you can do it!
- I tuned into the natural rhythms of my cycle – instead of pushing myself through a hard workout despite feeling run down or tired, I’ve started listening to my body more and focusing on daily movement as opposed to exercising in a certain way every day. So good.
- I got in touch with my femininity and embraced myself as a woman. Seriously powerful stuff!
- I occasionally practice yoga poses that help with hormone balancing that I learned at a workshop I went to in Bali. I find Yin and Restorative yoga very supportive for lowering stress and allowing my body to heal. I love to practice at home with YogaGlo.
- I’ve switched to natural beauty products. Since I went off the pill I’ve been more conscious of what is in the products I put on my skin, in my hair and use around the house and I try to keep things chemical and nasty free as much as possible. Pinterest is full of great recipes to make your own products (I’ve pinned some natural beauty and natural cleaning ideas for you to check out) and most supermarkets now sell more natural or eco-friendly options. I’ve created my own amazing Healing Facial Oil with rosehip oil and essential oils (these are the ones I use and love) which has made a huge different to my post-pill acne
Even though things are much more on track than they were, I’m not quite back to 100% hormonally yet and this mainly shows up in my skin. A few months ago I was experiencing breakouts and acne all the time but now I really only get pimples the week before and during my period. It’s getting better each cycle and I’m being patient and keeping up all the above tips to get it looking glowy asap.
Which leads me to something I want to remind you of, especially if you’re on your own healing journey at the moment. These things take time. There is often no quick fix and results come with consistent efforts to support your body.
If you don’t see a difference after a month or two, it doesn’t mean what you’re doing isn’t working. Small gains can be hard to notice but make sure you check in with how far you’ve come! Even for me, writing this list has made me appreciate all the shifts I’ve made that have all contributed to a happier, healthier and more balanced me.
I hope this list helps you! Feel free to share any other tips or questions in the comments below and use the buttons below to share this post with any girlfriends who could use this info.