In 2020 I was diagnosed with Endometriosis. I was one of the lucky ones where my diagnosis actually happened pretty quickly after starting to look for the answer to underlying issues. On average, endometriosis takes 7 years to be diagnosed, with countless tests, ultrasounds, and surgeries as the normal process to have this debilitating disease diagnosed.
Considering 1 in 9 women have endo, it’s heart wrenching to know that – still – a lot of women are getting told they just have painful periods, take some Nurofen, and it’ll go away.
Endometriosis happens to women when a cells resembling the endometrium (the lining of the uterus) grows outside the uterus, it can grow anywhere and is often found on the ovaries, bladder, bowel, and fallopian tubes creating scar tissue and joining these organs together causing ongoing pain and damage.
I was diagnosed with endo after trying to conceive a baby.
I think I knew something was wrong very early and sought answers from my doctors quickly. But still the moment I was told it was endo it shook me, it shook the future that I have envisaged for my whole life, I went to the car, cried and rang my husband.
Endometriosis isn’t just a painful period, even though period days can be days vomiting, crying, and losing all feeling in my legs, it’s not the worst. It’s 30-50% of women with endometriosis having issues with fertility, month after month of hoping that this will finally be the month that you break the statistics. It’s months of shots, blood tests, and having probes stuck up your vagina over and over again.
Endometriosis also doesn’t just affect you when you have your period either, throughout the month there are added symptoms like brain fog that is so foggy you can’t remember what you did through the day, or rupturing cysts that are so painful that you pass out and end up in hospital. Or added little friends; like my latest friends – called Emmy (1 & 2) – my endometriomas that are chocolates cysts that grow in your ovary, mine are currently 4.5cm and 2.75cm and Emmy likes to shoot pain through my ovary during very annoying times.
Endometriosis is an awful disease that isn’t just painful periods, the women that have this disease are strong warriors that still show up even when their pain levels are beyond the pain scale. I’m asking that if you think you might have this disease don’t wait for a diagnosis, fight for it because only then you can find your team that’ll help support you to find better health.