Today is a good day in Endometriosis Awareness Month

The last three weeks…not so much. I’ve cancelled going to shows, going to a board meeting (some secretary I’ve been), and had to force myself to go to work, because I need to pay rent.  Spending sleepless nights lying perfectly still, yet feeling my abdomen being wrung like a soaked towel. My gynecologist assured me that my endometriosis was under control.  Which made the pain I was having more unbearable.  I had known what was causing the pain, and now I didn’t anymore. What he said then was that many women who have endometriosis also develop Irritable Bowel Syndrome.  The constant pushing and pulling by the endo lesions in the lower body wreak havoc on the lower intestine, which reacts with…irritation.  So, I was referred to a gastroenterologist. That was in November.  I called my gynecologist’s office in February to ask if my referral had gone through – it had.  So then I called the gastroenterologist – they’re behind, but I was promised they’d call me to schedule an appointment in a couple of weeks.  It’s now 23 March. I will rant elsewhere about Canada and Alberta’s public health care systems being gutted by our increasingly conservative governments. What I’m concerned about today is that, six years after being diagnosed with endo, thirteen years after realizing something was wrong with me, it’s not over. I haven’t tried cutting down on any specific foods yet, because – unlike what advertisers would have us believe – each person can have different triggers.  That’s if IBS is what I have; I don’t even know yet.  I thought last week, perhaps, raw spinach was a culprit.  But I had some this past weekend, and I was fine.  It’s not likely gluten, because I haven’t made any particular effort to cut out bread, pasta, or soup using gluten as thickener.  And some days I’m good. Others, NOT. This Saturday, 28 March, is the EndoMarch at the Alberta Legislature, when all we “Endo Warriors” band together and tell the world that there is an insidious illness in 1 out of 8 women on earth, which has zero outward symptoms, but causes infertility, consistent muscle spasms and aches, depression, and OTHER illnesses, like IBS.  And no one knows where it comes from, or how to stop it. Today, this second, I feel normal.  Tomorrow?  In twenty minutes?  In five?  … I don’t know.

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