In my journey with Endometriosis, I’ve come across some really inspiring people who have written about their journeys and have helped me so much. It’s nice to know you’re not alone. March is Endometriosis Awareness month and I was diagnosed during Endometriosis week in 2014. In fact, I watched a feature about Endometriosis on This Morning whilst sitting in the hospital waiting room on the morning of my laparoscopy.
Without me going into too much detail and this sounding like a medical post, find out more about Endometriosis here.
One of the reasons why I’ve been putting off writing this is because firstly, Doctors would say that my Endometriosis “wasn’t that bad.” I had a diagnostic operation (a laparoscopy) in March 2014 to find out what was causing me so much pain every month and they found two spots of Endometriosis, which did not justify the amount of pain that I had been in. I was glad to have a diagnosis but the year that has followed has been a year of trial and error trying to get back to normal, figure out what normal was and making lots of trips to the Doctors.
The second reason why I have been putting off writing this post, is because I don’t think my Endometriosis is that bad! It’s not too significant so why do I think I have enough to say about it? I might not even have it any more so what right do I have to talk about it? I’m not like the other girls who also write about Endometriosis, so what makes me feel like my story needs to be heard. Well, these are all the reasons why I should be writing about it.
Not every girl who has Endometriosis is in excrutiating pain every single day, some girls are and I really can’t imagine what they must go through, some girls don’t even realise they have Endometriosis because they have little to pain at all.
So this is me, from the age of 11, I would have excrutiating pain for 7-10 days every month before my operation at the age of 26. I would also have problems with my digestion (again, I’m trying not to gross you out here so won’t go into detail!). I had an pelvic ultrasound scan when I was 15, which showed up nothing so I believed that I was probably just feeling normal pains and being really dramatic. But still, some nights I’d wake up in such pain that I’d be sick, I’d feel like I would pass out on my way to work and would sit in pain for days on end. I started to think this definitely wasn’t normal and so insisted I was referred to a specialist. In the end, I couldn’t wait to have the operation, to find out what was causing it all and hopefully make me feel better.
The pain got a lot worse immediately after my operation whilst I was still healing but then my Doctor suggested I go on the contraceptive pill and my symptoms started to settle down a little. I also tried to make healthier changes in my diet and tried to exercise as much as I could to help my symptoms, I knew that these changes wouldn’t stop the Endometriosis coming back, if they were to come back. The symptoms were no where near as bad as they were before the operation but still quite painful, I also felt very lethargic all the time, sometimes like I would faint. I feel like it didn’t matter what I did, I’d still be suffering in one way or another. Every time I would speak to my Doctor, she wasn’t very sympathetic, I wouldn’t explain myself very well due to lack of confidence and I felt like I was going round in circles.
The pill then started to not to agree with me. It didn’t matter how much I looked after my diet, how much I exercised and how truly happy I was, I felt so down and had such horrible mood swings. The last straw was when I spent the second evening in a row laying on the sofa, not wanting to talk, not wanting to watch anything, not wanting to sleep, not wanting a hug and not wanting to move. It was the worst and something needed to change.
The next morning, I called the doctors to make an appointment. I started to look forward to this Doctors appointment and actually started to feel a little better because I knew what had to be done. I decided to come off of the contraceptive pill. I discussed it with a new Doctor and we agreed that even though all Endometriosis advice leads to having some sort of synthetic hormones pumped into your body, this isn’t suitable for some Women. I needed to figure out what was normal for me and move on from there. And that is where I’m at at the moment.
I feel so much happier now, no more dreadful evenings on the sofa! And I’m slowly but surely getting on top of my symptoms. I’ve learned when to take pain relief so that it gets to work before the pain sets in. I practice yoga regularly, I eat less bread and sugar and eat (a lot) more fibre.
The biggest thing that I have learned in all of this, is how to listen to my body. It is always trying to tell you something, especially when you’re in pain. A lot of the time, my body is telling me to slow down and to stop trying to do too much! I’m not sure if I have endometriosis anymore and I’m not sure if it’ll come back or get worse but I know that if/when it does, I’ll be ready for it, if I listen to what my body is telling me.
I’m not a medical professional and I’m only writing from my experience. Feel free to ask me any questions and if you think you might have endometriosis, don’t think it’ll go away, don’t think “ooh it’s not that bad, it’s fine” (like I thought for a long time until it got much worse) go to see a Doctor to get it checked out.