Back In October I wrote a blog posting called "Life after Dairy" I had just gone and seen a naturopath and felt like I was on my way to healing. Honestly it did help build up my good bacteria in my gut again and heal some of my stomach issues but other things were just as bad as before if not worse.
Times are changing and woman are talking more about what is normal and what is not with our bodies, as far as pain and health are concerned. I am grateful for that because now I feel like I can be a bit more open about certain health concerns that in the past my doctor would say "Oh that's part of being a girl" or "Oh just suck it up and take Tylenol". After reading some various articles and talking to other woman we have all been told similar things in our life, which makes us embarrassed, which makes us not want to talk to the doctor out of fear and embarrassment that we can't "handle" the pain.
What I am referring to is a condition that actually is more common then you or I ever realized, why is that, because no one really talked about it because *gasp* it meant talking about your period. Lately I noticed more and more people are bringing it up and bringing up awareness for the subject. I am talking about endometriosis, a condition that can cause painful periods and pain during ovulation as well. The pain can vary from each person and the symptoms can be different for each person as well.
There are main indicators which are:
After going through some tests and talking with my doctor I realized that my severe IBS and how difficult it was for me to lose weight was also a part of it. Those are symptoms that aren't on the big list, but can be caused from the endometriosis. I also never had the infertility issues that can come of it, it wasn't very hard for us to get pregnant but the doctor said to count our blessings with that because most woman who suffer from this condition struggle.
As a teenager I would be in so much pain that I would vomit, I couldn't stand up straight and I would pass out from the pain. One time when I was in grade nine I had just gotten my period that morning and I was not well at all, but I knew I had to go because I had a quiz that day and it was important to not miss it. I remember sitting on my stool and crouched over in pain as I was writing the quiz and all I remember after that was swaying a bit, my lab partner yelling for the teacher, and then the room went black. I woke up to being fireman carried to the nurses office and then I blacked out again. I then woke up to the principle almost calling an ambulance and then my Mom was there and telling them "Don't worry she does this when she gets her monthly". Well my principle then told my mother and I, I was no longer allowed to be at school the first few days because I was a liability if I got hurt. When we went to our family doctor he basically told me to suck it up and to take Tylenol and that it is just part of being a girl. My mom and I didn't think that was very normal but what do you do when your health care professional won't listen to you.
That my friends was how it was for almost the last 20 years of my life, It caused me to miss school, work, not to be able to proselyte when I was a missionary. The only relief I had was when I was pregnant, but then I would bleed for a straight six weeks postpartum and then bam get my period back. After having Colton things got worse, it was really causing problems in my daily functioning. Now it wasn't just during my period but it was when I would ovulate and up until and the week of my period. I had enough, I couldn't work out, I was miserable, I was bloated all the time, I just didn't feel normal. So I went to my doctor and told her I was pretty sure that's what I had and I was pretty sure I have had it my whole life. Finally someone agreed, she sent me to get tests done and it came up that I did in fact have endometriosis. For me it is more in my ovaries and my upper uterus. I am on some heavy duty birth control which has actually worked the past three months and has made my life bearable, unlike the feelings of wanting swift death to come and take me 2 to 3 weeks out of the month. My doctor told me though it just gets worse over time and it gets worse after each kid, I am taking it one month at a time and trying to enjoy the fact that I am not bent over in pain. I do not have to have surgery yet and I am hoping I won't need it for a long time. I have been able to lose 8 pounds in the last two months, I have the energy to push through work outs because I am not fighting pain, my hormones for the first time in forever feel balanced.
If you have any of these symptoms or you know someone who has and they haven't been diagnosed or they have been told "it's just a part of being a girl" don't listen to that and go get checked out. We shouldn't have to live with pain that can be fixed, and we shouldn't have to live with abnormal pain just because we are a girl.
The first step with awareness with any condition is to talk about it more and if talking about it helps one person then that's what matters.
A little about me