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Life With Endo, There IS a Different Way: Part 1 [Endo Awareness Month]💛

There is the common way

The conventional way

The 'default' way

The way that almost every single one of us got ourselves into, not by the fault of our own...

The way that looks a little like this:

  • Painful periods right from the get go as a young girl (oh my heart 🥺)

  • Painful periods continuing through teenage years, impacting school, family life, social life, and hobbies

  • Painful periods brushed off by doctors and repeatedly being told "oh it's just a bad period- here, take some painkillers"

  • Painful periods continuing, other symptoms creeping up like pain in other places (legs, buttocks), bloating, changes in bowel movements, fatigue, and nausea.

  • Going back to the doctors for the nth time and then being put on the oral contraceptive pill because that's 'your only option'. FACEPALM!

  • Not having a real period for years and years, but even whilst on the pill, the gut symptoms, lethargy, nausea, and overall feeling unwell, never really shifts.

  • OR the pain continues whilst on the pill.

  • Eventually tests and scans are done and very often they are 'normal', meaning there can't be anything wrong. RIGHT? WRONG!

  • You're getting side effects from the pill (mood swings, weight gain, fluid retention), but you don't want to come off it because what about the pain?

  • Perhaps years down the track you plan to come off the pill because you want to try for a baby but when you do eventually come off, symptoms hit..AND THEY HIT 10X HARDER!

  • You finally speak to a doctor who mentions endometriosis as a differential diagnosis.

  • Eventually you are seen by a specialist and maybe or maybe not there is talk of endometriosis and a laparoscopy.

  • If you're in luck, the specialist you saw happens to be an endometriosis excision specialist and they schedule in surgery. If not, you might find yourself back at square one, in severe pain, and on the hunt for a doctor who IS an expert surgeon.

  • Eventually you get surgery and endo IS CONFIRMED- Hallelujah! But how long did it take to get here? 7 LONG YEARS!? Or MORE?


DID YOU KNOW?
In Australia it takes an average of 7 years to get an endometriosis diagnosis.

  • So surgery is done, and if you aren't trying for a baby, your doctor may recommend inserting an IUD like a Mirena - that's what happened to me (although I refused it).

  • You recover from surgery, and you find yourself OKayISH, but you are still having painful periods, bloating, nausea etc..

  • You might start trying to conceive, and if you aren't successful, you might see a fertility specialist and start assisted reproduction.

  • If you're not trying for a baby and your symptoms are still bad, you might get back on the pill, or other hormonal medications.


I THINK YOU GET THE GIST HERE...

I THINK WE CAN ALL RELATE TO THIS IN SOME CAPACITY.


This is the common way

The conventional way

The path that most of us have travelled along...

Our LOOOONG,

EXHAUSTING,

CONVOLUTED,

OVERWHELMING,

PAINFUL

ENDO JOURNEY....


Not to mention, the added complexities if we have other conditions too.

I have POTS, a form of dysautonomia, which can also be incredibly debilitating, and while I'm parked at this thought, here's a photo of my 'BULKY' uterus (yes, I have an adenomyosis diagnosis too). This is OFTEN the cause of heavy bleeding.



It's not our fault that we often find ourselves YEARS DEEP on this path,

going down the common way,

BY DEFAULT,

because the system led us there...


And if this common way has served you well, that that is fine, however this probably is not speaking to you and this is going to resonate with someone else.


BECAUSE...

The common way has been a disservice and has caused much

grief,

pain,

and stress

to SO MANY women and girls with endo.


The wait

The gaslighting

The undermining

The dismissing

The EVERYTHING...


I was just on a client call and I hadn't spoken about the early years of my endo story verbally to anyone IN YEARS...


And when I shared it with her, it moved me, and got me emotional.


WHY?

Because I was. a 14 year old girl, at boarding school (eating terrible food, using toxic body products- that's a whole other conversation), in debilitating pain and discomfort. Missing out on school, and experiencing such a myriad of symptoms. I was sent off to the doctor that was affiliated with the college and low and behold, after months and months and months of dismissal and painkillers, I was put on the pill. At the ripe old age of 14....


Because, he dismissed me

He brushed off my symptoms.


Can I add that because I was at boarding school, I was not accompanied by any family members, nor did I have any family support, or family advocating for me.


There I was, young 14 year old me (my symptoms started when my periods started at 11 by the way), being taken to the doctor by boarding house staff (who cared for me), but this outing was their job, it wasn't their role to advocate for me- and because I was clueless about my body...I felt like I HAD NO VOICE...

It was different forms of hormones for YEARS for me, before even getting a diagnosis.

Eventually I got a diagnosis...12 years AFTER the onset of symptoms.


It's been almost 11 years since my diagnosis and I have learnt SO MUCH about another way.


About the path LESS TRAVELLED


THIS path has opened my eyes to the fact that although the default path that endo patients get thrown into is

LONG

PAINFUL

AND CONVOLUTED,


OUR BODY'S PREFERRED MODE IS EASE, FLOW, HEALING AND OUR BODY IS ALWAYS TRYING TO HELP US THRIVE.


From the atomic level,

to the cellular level,

to the biochemical pathway level,

to the tissue level,

to the organ level,

and to the system level.


Holistically, speaking, we are whole people (body, mind, spirit, will, emotions, etc...),

NOT JUST A BODY WITH A DISEASE PROCESS AND A SET OF SYMPTOMS.


We are, by default, wired for love, and wired to thrive.


But somewhere along the way, the disease process crept in and endo started to grow and spread.


Then the things we didn't know we were doing,

wearing,

eating,

drinking,

and were exposing ourselves to, would then act as drivers of symptoms

(I AM NOT IMPLYING THE CAUSATION OF ENDO, AS WE DON'T KNOW EXACTLY WHAT CAUSES ENDO, BUT WE KNOW THEORETICALLY, WHAT CONTRIBUTES TO SYMPTOM PROGRESSION AND AGGRAVATION).


AND THEN...

We find ourselves where we find ourselves.


Whether you've just been diagnosed,

was diagnosed over a decade ago (like me),

or are yet to get a diagnosis,

and you are reluctantly traveling along 'the conventional way' (AS ABOVE)

BUT IT FEELS WRONG,

you're not comfortable about it, you feel unheard, unsupported,

dismissed (hey sis, I FEEL YOU as this was me too)...


YOU CAN OPT OUT

UNSUBSCRIBE TO THIS WAY

SAY NO.. and,

LOOK FOR OTHER OPTIONS


BECAUSE THERE IS ANOTHER WAY

There is another way, but the other way may not be easy (not like the conventional way was easy anyway), and I'll delve into this SOON in PART 2!


Happy Endometriosis Awareness Month🎗


I'd love to hear your endo story, and it would be a privilege to journey alongside your health journey. Book your complimentary intro call HERE.


Lots of love,

Kimberly



















PS: I'm hosting an a live interview and Q&A with Dr. Kanayama from New York Endometriosis and his inspiring patient Carissa, I'd love if you attended! Although this is a free event...There are limited spots, so click HERE to register.




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