Don't Get Your Ovaries in a Bunch

Don't Get Your Ovaries in a Bunch

Kim Salac
Media Staff

“Hang tight, man.”

Is what the doctor said to me before leaving to search for an ultrasound machine so they could make sure my ovaries hadn’t twisted and cut off their own blood supply.

After roughly four hours, the doctor made the advantageous discovery that my ovaries were perfectly fine, and I was on my merry way home. The crippling pain I had experienced hours prior was chalked up to an ovarian cyst (hypothesized by the trace amount of fluid found in the ultrasound) that had ruptured.

While I was not dissatisfied at this response (I was quite relieved, in fact, to not need major surgery), I was surprised that something less than two centimeters in size could leave me curled up in a fetal position just hours before.

Like Marion Crane, I was showering blissfully when things took a dramatic turn for the worst. It started with blunt abdominal pain that increasingly sharpened, and in a matter of seconds, I was doubled over. What terrified me more than Norman Bates, however, was that, unlike in Psycho, there was no blood running down the drain. It was not a Carrie moment, where I was shocked to find blood between my thighs. I wasn’t on my period. This pain was unprompted.

It started with blunt abdominal pain that increasingly sharpened, and in a matter of seconds, I was doubled over.


Had it been my time of the month, I wouldn’t have been scared. I have had painful periods before. As a matter of fact, I always have painful periods. I have “cradling-my-belly” periods. “Hunched-over-with-a-heating-pad” periods. “Have-to-take-an-ibuprofen-the-moment-I-start-bleeding-if-I-want-a-fighting-chance-at-not-being-immobilized-for-an-hour” periods. So yes—”interfering-with-my-daily-life” periods that I have both expected and accepted for ten years.

I stumbled from the shower to my bed, and could focus solely on the pain. Imagine the infamous chestburster scene from Alien, but it’s my uterus.

An hour later, the pain finally subsided, and I was left numb and confused. That’s when my mother preventatively brought me to Urgent Care, where, worst case scenario, I had gotten my ovaries in a bunch and would need emergency surgery to straighten them out or remove them.

“But, don’t worry!” I was told, “you have two.”

Ultimately, I was fine—just like how I was fine a month earlier when my cramps were so bad that I had to take an hour break from my j-term class, lay on the floor with a pillow and a heating pad, and breathe until the pain killers finally set in. I took three. My recovery was eating a loaf of chocolate chip brioche bread while wrapped in a blanket and watching my classmates’ presentations, grateful that I didn’t have to miss any more class time than I did.

This particular incident warranted a visit to the gynecologist, and she informed me that nothing was out of the ordinary. How typical it is to be in agonizing pain. Besides the pill, there was nothing else they could do for me, and hormonal birth control isn’t for everyone.

I wish I could grab the remote and turn off these monthly horrors, or that I could squeeze my eyes shut and cover my ears until my uterus’s “chainsaw massacre” is over. But for now I guess I’ll just hang tight, man.