…Or a Day in the Life with Someone Who Suffers.
It usually starts about three days before my period, the spotting. Sometimes the spotting happens in-between cycles, making me think that I am getting it early. I panic a bit and take inventory. By the time I decide I need a pad, it’s gone, only to return three days before my period, making me scramble again. It’s hard to map fertility. I have to use an app.
The pelvic pain is next to rear its ugly head. Right in my hips, around my joints, is a throbbing pain that brings with it occasional pins and needles. I can’t sit comfortably; shifting constantly to find the “sweet spot” where my hips hurt less. Walking on the bad days makes me look like I need a walker. Lifting my feet is too painful, so I shuffle them, walking slowly to get where I am going. There were days when I rode with my husband and he would have to literally lift me out of the semi so I could get out of the truck, and then he would have to push me from behind to get me back into it. Bedtime is a game of lying in the just the right spot to where no pressure hits my hip area. This is not easy. It usually takes me a couple of tosses and turns before I can settle in for the night.
I really have to watch what I eat because anything that I really want goes right through me, like an express train. People laugh when I say that I have the intestinal fortitude of a duck when my unwanted visitor pays me a visit. They don’t know how serious I am. I laugh it off with them. It starts about a week before my period and starts tapering off a few days after. I nibble on this and snack on that, and when I do eat, five minutes later, I have to go to the bathroom. I will spare you those details.
Everything gives you gas. Sure there is bloating on your cycle anyway, but when you have Endo, you feel like a hot air balloon. It doesn’t matter if you eat a salad, soup, or a full meal, you get gas. Dairy? Forget it. It bloats me instantly and gives me stomach cramps. Beans? Yeah, we won’t go there. Let’s just say I could inflate quite a few party balloons with the gas that I have during my cycle.
The cramps are contraction grade with the feeling of someone pushing down on my insides. I am in no mood to eat, think, type or function. I have to anyway, and that makes everything a lot harder. I take naps; fighting the pain is exhausting. There are times that I can’t even get out of bed, let alone write, or do anything. I pray for menopause, because hot flashes can’t possibly be worse than this.
I look for, and buy, the most absorbent pads that I can find. If not, when I wake up in the morning the first two nights, I have to take a shower, change the sheets, scrub everything and do laundry. Endo accidents are not little. They look like someone got murdered. My heavy days have me changing every two to three hours or I have to change clothes again. Forget wearing a tampon. That makes the pain worse. I’ve tried menstrual cups, same thing. I am stuck with pads.
Midol makes the pain bearable, and I live on them the first two days of my flow, two at a time. Taking them every four hours in order to function makes life miserable for someone who hates to take pharmaceutical OTC medications. Money is tight, so I can’t order the herbal combos that I need or follow the diet I want to keep it manageable.
I hope my story give you a good idea of how it feels to have this disorder. I’ve been living with Endometriosis since I entered high school. I’ve been coping with it, living with it, and cursing it most of my life. Do you have Endometriosis? Would you like to share your story?
Until next time, God Bless