I am going to take a moment to get a little bit more serious on this blog post. This post will be a little bit more raw, more personal, more about a part of my life that I don't often talk openly about if you don't know me, but I really should.
On January 9, 2015 - I was diagnosed with Endometriosis.
For those who may not know what Endometriosis (Endo) is; it's a disease in which endometrial tissue, commonly found in the uterus, presents itself outside of the uterus. For me - it was my uterosacral ligaments in my pelvis - but for many women, it can make its way into your bowels, lungs, and even brain. The disease is complex, affecting many women differently and unfortunately has no cure.
Now that you have a rough background of what the disease is - let me share with you my story and how I came to live my life with Endo.
In November 2013, I began to have excruciating stomach pain. Pain so bad, that my mother, who is a nurse, told me to go to the ER straight away as she suspected it was my appendix. Well after 2 months of in and out visits to the ER, multiple ultrasounds, cat scans, scopes - all my results came back healthy. In the doctor's eyes, I was a medical anomaly - a girl with terrible stomach pain, but nothing wrong with her.
In May 2014, I met an amazing doctor who listened to my symptoms and simply said to me - I am 99% positive you have Endometriosis and you should be seeing a Gynaecologist - Endo what?
I did some research on what exactly Endo was - what it could mean, read possible symptoms (as I checked off almost all). Then I began talking to those close to me - with a startling result - Oh my mom has that, my aunt, my sister, my friend from work... why is it all these people have this condition, yet it's still so widely unknown?
"1 in 10 women have Endometriosis"
In July 2014, I met with my Gynae. Although I had a terrible time with the student doctor telling me that I couldn't possibly have Endo - the doctor, herself, said it is possible.
See my symptoms were mainly gastro. I had terrible bloating, nausea, couldn't eat, excruciating pelvic pain. This is something I want to get across with this disease - it manifests itself in so many different ways.
After a brief trial on Visanne - which took away the sharp pelvic pain, making it more manageable. I opted to have surgery - the only true fire way for diagnosis and removal.
January 9, 2015 - I went in for my first, and so far only, surgery for Endo. Where my two little Endo spots were found and removed. I woke up in tears as I read the letter my doctor left me with what they found - tears because I wasn't crazy, it wasn't in my head.
It's funny - you wouldn't think a diagnosis of a disease would make you happy - but in my mind, what I was feeling had a name, I wasn't losing my mind (as so many thought). I could now arm myself with whatever I could to try to manage this - to become an Endo Warrior.
I want my journey to help you.
These past three years have been filled with finding ways to cope with my own Endo. I stopped Visanne, went on regular birth control pills, stopped those went on an IUD, my uterus rejected said IUD, I went on Depo (please never do this), and now I am letting my body figure itself out - without artificial hormones.
I changed my diet - for me eliminating red meat and dairy has made all possible gastro symptoms vanish. I did pelvic physiotherapy (so worth it). I see a massage therapist and osteopath regularly. I do yoga daily. I meditate multiple times a day.
This is the body I was given - and I want to do everything in my power to live my best life. To help others live their best life. Try, fail, try again, fail again. It's worth it - I promise you.
This will be my forever struggle - but I am not alone - and neither are you. If you read this and said - I think I might have this, or I have this, or even I know someone that has this - join a community, talk to your doctor. You can do this, and I will be right there with you.
If you are struggling and need someone - please DM me on Instagram, Facebook, or even send me an email. I am here for you.
As apart of our efforts to raise awareness for Endometriosis in the month of March - we will be donating 10% of all our proceeds this month to the Endometriosis Network of Canada.