Endometriosis – A few things to know.

As we are still in Endometriosis Awareness Month, I thought I would pass on a little experience regarding how this condition or disease might affect you, If you suspect or have been told that you have Endometriosis, here are some of the warning signs I’ve noticed and been made aware of, I thought I should share them with you in case no-one else has.
Firstly, Endometriosis affects 1 in 10 women, so you are never alone.

That if you have very heavy and painful periods with abdominal pain during the rest of the month you may have this condition.

It is not currently a recognised disability.

It is an invisible illness, a lot of the time people will accuse you of faking.

People will not understand, unless they have ever been affected by it either themselves or with a loved one.

It can affect your fertility. But, some are lucky to be able to bear children.

It can be a hereditary condition, but it can also skip generations.

You will often feel as though your medical team are not listening, some are just blissfully unaware.

Your diet will often be affected by this condition try eliminating foods and re-introduction to see what suits you and what does not.

You may develop IBS, this could be down to diet, medications or even just a progression of the disease.

Your weight and/or size may fluctuate. Be prepared to wear larger, more comfortable clothes at times when you need to.

Sometimes you will bloat with wind and it is excruciating. – Peppermint is your friend!
Having a child will not cure it, neither will a full or partial Hysterectomy. There is actually no cure.

You will be prepared to try almost anything to help your symptoms.

Until you are diagnosed, you may at times suspect your sanity.

It can take 7 years to diagnose Endometriosis, but sometimes even longer, it took 15 for me.
You will need people around you to help you, when your illness is bad. Accept their help.

Educate your friends, family and employer to this condition. Although it might affect your life to different degrees if they are aware, then you have a chance that they could be more understanding.

If your GP or Gynaecologist refuses to assist with diagnosis, then get that second, or third opinion. Referral to a specialist for this condition is key. General Gynaecologists often do not know about Endometriosis.

It affects people in different ways, but it is a debilitating condition, so if you have to take to your bed, just do it. Make yourself warm and comfortable.

Your symptoms are aggravated by stress. Try to find a quiet place to be calm and rest. – I know, this is often far easier said than done.

Although it is often related to your menstruation. Adhesions can attach themselves to other organs, this can cause you pain and other health issues.

After a Hysterectomy there may be no sign of the disease and you could be pain free. But your pain may also return and you may suffer previous symptoms again.

Endometriosis can also attach itself to the bladder or bowel.

You will know your body and it’s patterns, If any of your symptoms change or worsen, don’t be afraid to call your Doctor.

Try and raise awareness of this condition, there are many women out there who have no idea that what they are going through, is not a normal sign of growing up and are just trying to cope.

There are many support groups, Join one! They are filled with people just like you who are fighting the same battle as well as their own. You will gain, advice, make friends, gather information about the disease and how to fight it.

International Women’s Day.

Since it is International Women’s Day, I thought I would head back to my childhood for this, little did I realise as I wrote it, the effect that it would have on my day and my loved one.  The journey into womanhood is not always easy, there are scars you bring with you and I am trying to heal as I go. In two minds as to whether this should be posted, at his suggestion, today is the day! I am thankful that he is alongside me and continues to offer support even when it is unexpected.

As We Grow.

For an afternoon, we get together.
Seems as though it’s been forever
It’s not often that you go out to eat
To sit and talk, a proper meet.

It gets me thinking of younger years
And suddenly I’m choking tears.
Growing up when times were fraught,
Don’t seek to blame, not always your fault.
To push and push and test and test
You only felt you were doing your best.
Taken to church on every Sunday
Ridiculed yet again on Monday

During the week off to school,
Often made to look like a fool.
When sometimes to the house they came,
I would hide myself in shame.
Of what had passed when out to play,
Just wanted to hide myself away.
Did I do wrong? Was I meant,
To hold in all of this torment.
I may have brought it upon myself
A thought when later it affects your health.

Time has passed and strength has grown
Since venturing out all on my own.
They say the times of sand have shifted
Sometimes I see the dark clouds lifted
And sadness takes such time to feel
The memory blurred enough to heal.

Should not be where your thoughts lay
What happened when you went away?
Life’s so different should you return,
But if you stay here you’ll have to learn.
Made to feel bad for a mistake
As your life you try to remake.
It’s strange that it comes flooding back
You realise there’s something you lack.

You didn’t know him well, or understand,
How to make his point, he’d raise his hand.
Wished sometimes for a slap in the face
Instead to put you back in your place.
But without this life, as they say
You wouldn’t be the same person today.
But down where these memories reside
Is where it still hurts deep inside.

A chance for a coffee, for a chat,
Not time to talk about all that.
Decided no longer to be a slave,
But as innocent, don’t try to behave.
For all those things in time gone by
To the back of your mind you must try
For it is now time to move on
Even you can’t undo the wrong.
Don’t dwell upon the past they say
It’s in the past, it’s gone away.

We don’t understand we have to forgive
Once we leave home, our lives to live.
As it’s been a long time since,
We now celebrate our difference.
Although in some ways we are alike.
I can’t get up or sing on a ‘mike‘.
But as enthusiasm starts to show,
For all the things that we should know.

Hope that forgiveness is to me
All that it’s cracked up to be,
I’m not as though heaven sent,
But glad we are so different.

 

Awaken the Gratitude in your Life

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It is part of my journey that I am attempting to embrace the changes which have been happening in my life recently. As someone who in her past has not coped particularly well with change to the every day, I have at times found this almost impossible. But I have found something which helps enables me to do this, a wonderful tool in the box, which is helping me rebuild where things were once broken.

At times it is hard to take a look outside of yourself, when life feels dark and you are so caught up with the thoughts in your head.

So may I suggest this….

Try if you can to breathe, look around you and find just one thing which you can be Grateful or thankful for. I am sure that once you start to do this you will soon notice that many more appear when you open your eyes to them and you begin to think outside of the box.

There is a wonderful lady who has spent the past three years seeking to open people’s eyes to the concept of Gratitude. She is called Kristin Granger and lives on the other side of the world to me in Australia. Kristin runs a Facebook page called Gratitude in All and I love what she shows on the page. She regularly runs through the alphabet in her posts asking people to comment upon what they are grateful for. Take a look, I am sure that you will find the answers interesting and possibly inspiring.

If you can contribute, share her posts and like her page, I am sure that it will encourage you to change your outlook and look for the good things. It may provide you with inspiration too.

It has for me….

So remember with fondness, the good things in your past, and Celebrate the Good that your future holds.

https://www.face book.com/Gratitudenall/ You can also find more of her work and writing at http://twistoffaith.com.au

March! It’s Endometriosis Awareness Month

DSC_0184It’s March and with thoughts of Spring, we head into Endometriosis Awareness Month. Like many other months of the year, those who are sufferers and their loved ones choose to raise awareness of the things which have affected their lives, in the hope that it will bring answers, help and encouragement to others.  This poem describes my own ongoing fight with this illness and I hope that it explains some of what our #Endosisters and #Endowarriors go through.   If you would like to donate funds into the research of this illness please do so via https://www.endometriosis-uk.org/ and give them the help that they need and if you see someone wearing yellow this month, or even just the adornment of a yellow ribbon then this might just be what they are showing their support of.

Just Living With It….

I lay to rest as my body quakes,

Just how long have I stayed awake?

My limbs are sore and continue to shake

Again the bed I’ll have to remake.

I roll around here and there,

Sleep won’t come and it’s not fair!

Fever and delirium often appear,

Managing to awaken the fear

There’s pain in my stomach, fire in the pit

Tired and aching from all of it.

Sometimes in pain and sometimes I’m numb,

Then to the tablets I’ll succumb.

Gently rolling from side to side,

Waiting for it all to subside.

Exhausted from the tossing and turning,

For a decent night’s sleep I am yearning.

Swelling and Bloating are part of it all,

Feeling so weak, you often fall.

Friends and Doctors think we are mad,

When to bed we return as pain gets so bad.

Surgery on occasion they’ll offer,

In the hope it’ll make you better.

Or hormones and potions by the score

For any reprieve you’ll ask for more.

Sometimes some small amount of relief

Will spur you on “The Cure?” a belief

But they haven’t found one, they’re testing you see,

Medication and therapies on you and on me.

A silent illness it’s often said

So easily discounted as “All in your head”

But it is real, and it is there,

If you’re lucky you’ll have someone who’ll care

You’ll need them with you by your side,

When away from the world you’ll want to hide.

Quite often leaves you childless

Weeping in offices, you are a mess!

As you’re told and trying to understand,

You’d better take someone to hold your hand.

You have your turn of the “monthly curse”

That never ends and you hope for a hearse.

The endless pain to take away,

The emotional torture at the end of the day

Removes the chance of happiness

When those around you couldn’t care less.

Many years later, when you feel insane

They suddenly tell you it has a name.

So what have I got? What is this?

Well, they call it Endometriosis

How did it get here, suddenly arrive?

Will it finish me off or will I survive?

Well, it fuses your organs and causes you pain

And just when you think that you’re through it again

You feel that familiar dragging, pulling around,

Know it’s back, but not where it’ll be found.

Your digestion is poor, your bowels misbehave

A day without this is all that you crave.

On rare days you can feel so well

Invisible illness, Endometriosis Hell!

In a Moment

DSC_0104They say that Home is where the Heart is.

On reaching this part of the world for the very first time, I was stuck by the light and beauty of my surroundings and when we arrived, we walked around drinking it all in.  There are moments which stay with you and what followed was to be one such moment.

Walking around the overgrown garden, which hadn’t been touched in years I took my camera snapping away anxious to take with me everything that my eyes could see, to pore over at a later date and relive the moments.

Little did I know that what was about to happen would have such a profound effect upon me and cement in my mind that this was a place which would feel like home, where I would run to for solace and comfort in years to come.

As I walked tentatively watching where I was putting my feet, since there were so many rabbit holes and the ground was so uneven.  I was just about to place my foot upon the earth when I saw something before me which moved me as though to stop my heart in it’s tracks. I noticed what looked like a large dock leaf move and my heart was in my mouth as I lifted the corner of it to see a baby fawn curled up asleep in the afternoon sunshine.  I have no idea as to its age, however it was the size of a small cat curled up, its beady black eyes gazing up at me and I think it could not have been more than a few days old.  It made no sound, nor any attempt to run it just stayed there, indelible upon my memory that moment.  I spoke to it very gently, telling it that it was safe and that I would not harm it, being careful not to touch it and leave my scent upon it, I just lifted up the leaf, took about 20 camera shots of it very close up and left the leaf to fall, I then retraced my steps to avoid alarming it’s mother any more and walked around it by a distance of about 10 feet.

I felt truly blessed and emotional about that moment and knew right then that this was going to be home for me. I walked over to my partner and told him what had just happened with tears in my eyes.

To be surrounded by Nature and to have wildlife feeling comfortable enough to graze and hide out in your garden must mean that it is a safe and welcoming place.