When you were a child, did you ever read the book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day?
Today, I feel like Alexander. Today is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. What is the cause of this terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day? One word: Endometriosis.
Most days are fine and I feel fine. Or, as fine as I can feel. Then there are days like today where I feel like a slave to my disease. I feel imprisoned to the pain coursing through my abdomen. It has taken over emotionally. My cup of hormones runneth over and I want to cry like a baby about everything. I only know one other person who has Endometriosis. A friend of a friend. I don’t know if she feels as horribly as I do and I don’t know her well enough to ask. So, I endure the pain all alone. A lot of my friends don’t understand why I never want to go out anymore. They don’t understand why I am always so tired. For these reasons many of my friendships and relationships with others have suffered. I make no apologies for that which I cannot control.
On the bright side, I do have some wonderfully supportive family and best friends. My mom has watched me writhe in pain since I was 12. I believe she also has Endometriosis but was never officially diagnosed. She endured the same pain I did when she was younger. It’s funny how the people I most value are the people who were able to deal with my mood swings and hormonal gymnastics before I knew anything about what Endometriosis was or that I had it. My two college roommates had to endure this for three years and somehow understood. They never got upset when I would lock myself away or get my attitudes. They were always indifferent about it like they knew I would snap out of it and be me again in a week or two. I absolutely love them both for this. My mother had it worse. She not only had to deal with me through puberty, but also puberty with Endometriosis. Thank God I was blessed to have a mother with the patience of a saint.
How do I deal with my Endometriosis? Sometimes, I feel like I don’t. I feel like if I just ignore it, then maybe it will go away. I am not naive. I know it will never go away. When I was on birth control it helped a great deal. My OB/GYN put me on LoEstrin and it was wonderful. I had no pain and hardly any cramps or fatigue. When I lost my job, I lost my insurance, and I lost my LoEstrin eventually. Paying out of pocket for my birth control became an expense I couldn’t handle anymore. I started taking Advil when that horrendous time of the month hit and that would help as well. However, I hate taking so many pills. It makes me feel like a drug addict or close enough to one. I’ve tried to take a more natural and healthy approach to Endo. I’ve looked up all the different foods and products that the Endometriosis Association says exacerbates the symptoms of Endo. I really have tried to cut those things out of my life, but a life full of habits is exceptionally hard to break.
So, as of today this is where I stand with Endometriosis. A confused, pained, emotionally disgruntled woman trying to find relief for those two weeks or less of every month when Endo takes over my body and my life. If Alexander had been a woman who felt anything like I do the story would’ve been titled, A Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Endometriosis Day.