Cycle Stories: Alexa
Hear from one of our clients, Alexa, an artist and creative living in Sacramento who found #PeriodPainFree on Instagram and is one of our first believers.
- For as long as Alexa can remember, her period has been debilitating.
- After trying Chinese herbs, Alexa's life has changed.
Hear from one of our members, @lexalion, an artist and creative living in Sacramento who found Elix on Instagram when we were in beta as #PeriodPainFree and is one of our first believers. We are so grateful that she's offered to share her menstrual journey. #notsponsored
For as long as I can remember, my period has been debilitating. The first 2 days are filled with unceasing, searing cramps, deep aches throughout my body, and nausea. Once the pain begins, no amount of ibuprofen can make a dent in it. Because my cycle is so irregular, I've never managed to get ahead of the pain with medications or plan important events around it. Being the Yes Man-status extrovert that I am, having to say no to opportunities has been hard on me.
Read more: Painful Periods: When to See a Doctor
When I was in working abroad in Korea, I found myself literally laying across a heated public toilet seat during an important dinner and praying that the handful of pain meds I'd taken would kick in.
This year, my cramps woke me in a cold tent as I camped in Iceland for a wedding. TWO WEEKS early. I felt so defeated that I wept in front of someone I'd just met and spent the rest of the day in the fetal position hoping we'd come across a hot spring.
Without fail, I've had to take a couple of days off work every month. It's embarrassing to be taken out of the game professionally by something I've been made to feel is normal to deal with.
When I went to a female gynecologist, and explained the severity of my symptoms, she had little interest in finding their source. She didn't recommend an ultrasound or blood work, but instead pushed hormonal birth control on me. I told her that I had no interest in that, but wanted to figure out what was causing my pain. She insisted that I at least let her prescribe me a low dosage birth control to possibly help ease my symptoms. I left the appointment feeling completely hopeless. If a female doctor didn't think that my pain mattered enough to find the cause, then where else was I to go?
I've tried applying Clary Sage oil a couple times a day to balance my hormones. (This is a godsend for a lot of women, but didn't do anything noticeable for me.)
I've slathered myself in every intensity of CBD oils and butters. (I still do this, just for the calming scent of it. Amber moon? Um, yes please.)
The only thing that helps me at all is a lot of heat and just waiting it out. Sooo fetal position with a hot rice bag. Doesn't leave a lot of room for productivity.
When I came across the @PeriodPainFree instagram account and read what they were working towards, I finally felt heard. A natural brand that cares about figuring out the source of your individual symptoms and HEALING your body. Not a quick fix. Not just another instagrammably-packaged product. The team were so quick to respond to all of my questions. Even with all of the research backed ingredients, I was afraid to get my hopes up again... But I gave it a shot.
Firstly, this stuff actually tastes good. I was totally ready to take an overpowering herbal concoction and instead found myself having an earthy peppermint tea. It's so good on it's own that I just dropper it straight into a mug of hot water.
The first couple months I tried to take this, my period snuck up extra early on me. I wasn't able to take it in the days leading up to the start of my cycle, but took it in the first 5 days anyways. *I really wanted to get started*. Because I was already in the throes of my symptoms, they didn’t cease completely. However, what did happen was that the herbs took the edge off of my pain. As someone who's completely unaffected by pain meds, that was a big deal. I couldn't wait to actually take these herbs at the right time.
This past month, I took the Chinese herbs in the 7 days leading up to my period for the first time. I don't know if this is even a side effect of the herbs, but I felt SO positive in the week that I was taking them. Things that would normally play on my anxiety or depression just rolled off of me. On day 1, I woke up with body aches as usual. Normally, excruciating cramps would begin pretty much immediately. They. Never. Started. Instead of sending another "I've gotta stay in bed today" text to my manager, I went to work.
Normally I’m too nauseous to make calls, but not this time. I didn't have to cancel an apartment viewing I'd been looking forward to or say no to a dinner out with my family. The second day was the same way. I had to send a message to Lulu, I was so amazed. This was the first time I'd been able to function at all on the first two days of my period in as long as I can remember. It's life changing.
When I think of how many other women are taken out of the game by their pain every month, it's so much more than a physical issue. We need to heal ourselves and get back in there. If any of my story sounds familiar to you, please fill out the survey and try it out. I'm totally open to answering any questions about my personal experience with Elix. I wish I could tell everyone about it, I can't recommend it enough. It's my actual personal holy grail.
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