It’s March again… which means it’s Endometriosis Awareness month.
Endometriosis (Endo) is a reproductive disease that effects 1 in 10 women and about 176 million women worldwide. Endo is defined as “displaced” endometrial tissue that usually grows inside the uterus. It often surfaces in the abdomen or pelvis by attaching to organs and muscles. Consequently, this can cause chronic severe pelvic pain, painful intercourse, extreme fatigue and debilitating cramps. It can also cause painful bowel movements or urination at any point in a woman’s cycle.
According to Endometriosis.org, it affects these women during the prime of their lives and through no personal failing in lifestyle choices. Many women experience chronic pain due to the disease and the frequent surgeries needed to treat it.
I was diagnosed with the disease 6 years ago and it was difficult to understand then just how much it would impact my life. In the moment, I was mostly thankful to have an answer for all the pain and random symptoms.
And though it has been a difficult road, filled with 4 excision surgeries and many different tests, I have also learned a lot about myself. I’ve learned to persevere. I have learned to be thankful and appreciate the “good pain days”.
My hope behind Endo Awareness month is that it helps raise awareness (obviously), provides non-sufferers with useful information about the illness, and provides resources for other Endo sisters.
I don’t know if “they” will ever find a cure for Endo in my lifetime, but there is hope. Endometriosis is a very misunderstood disease, but researchers are making strides every day.
Stay tuned for more Endo posts during the month of March.
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