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.

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!