March is Endometriosis Awareness Month, which is very appropriate since this is the month my ovaries decided to rejoin the crazy parade...I think...
Anyway, since you never ask, and blogs are my opportunity to whine [I just misspelled that as wine...Freudian, I think] I'm gonna.
This stuff hurts. Endometriosis is a wacky disease. Just as no 2 people have the same pain tolerance, no 2 people have the same effects. So while there are 5 stages of adhesions that your surgeon can see, that has no bearing at all on whether or not your periods are painful. And according to this article earlier stages of endo can do more damage to your egg quality than later stages because the endometrial tissues slow down in growth and quit producing so many toxins.
Well, that would be me. And yes, my periods are painful. Honestly, my life is painful. Everyday something between my bellybutton and thighs hurts no matter if it's my "lady's days" or not. That may or may not be due to my bladder thing (interstitial cystitis). It's not like, "Please shoot me, I'd rather be dead." pain, it's more like "Dammit, I'm gonna punch myself in my own ovary if you don't leave me alone, only I don't think that would help." In other words, most days it's annoying and bothersome with an intermittent stabbing sensation that lasts a couple of seconds thrown in for, you know, fun and giggles. I used to think those were "ovulation pains" but since they happen almost everyday, and I don't ovulate worth crap on my own...I think they're just "Hi, it's your left ovary just being an ass today," pain. Or, it could be my bladder....or uterus...or who even knows!
You know that feeling right after you've been punched in the gut...it kinda stings and feels all bruisy...well that's where my pelvic innards live...or at least that's the best way I can describe it. Sometimes it's quieter than others...but unless I'm actively thwarting my cycle with lupron or depo provera, which unfortunately interferes with baby-making, I have some level of annoyance/pain. When/if I actually get my period...then it's just weather the storm, lots of ibuprofen, Thermacare patches, and prayers, cold sweats, insomnia, and remembering to sit down before the curtains close so I don't fall out.
I try really hard to not let any of this interfere with my life, whether it's my lady's days or just an aggravation of normal dysfunction. Unfortunately, and I've already had 4 days in 2 months, I have days where it's like I have a migraine in my pelvis. I'm sure I could get up and move on, but the fetal position with a heating pad and sleeping through it feels so much better. I've never missed work because of endo outside of the surgery I had, but I've definitely missed my life on my off days. In my opinion, I think my "grin and bear it" gets worn out and has to refresh itself. Then I feel all guilty for being lazy and lying around all day. But oh, that sweet, sweet heating pad and my Egyptian cotton sheets...
Despite all this, I try to be joyful, perky, and not drag people down. Sometimes trying is harder than others, and it's more difficult because nobody can see or really understand your pain to appreciate how hard you work at times to achieve this.
So anyway, I took this opportunity to whine to you, because I wanted to remind you endometriosis is just one of many diseases that doesn't make a person look ill, potentially causes a lot of pain, and worst of all, has no cure. It's a constant reminder to me to not assume anything about other people, and to be thankful for the ways in which I am healthy.
Peace, Love, and Fight Like a Girl
"Out of suffering have emerged the strongest of souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars." ~Khalil Gilbran