Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My Scarlet Letter

Before you read further, this may just be for woman, but I think that it would be helpful for a man who is with a woman with similar problems to read it as well.

You may have gone about your life thinking to yourself that pain is normal. Pain with your period is normal yes, but extreme pain before, during and after is NOT. Pain with sex (if you’re that kinda gal *GRIN*) is also normal at times, but extreme pain during and after is NOT.
I wasn’t told that I had endometriosis until I was 20. That was almost 5 years after the pain began. When I started researching it for a college essay, I had no idea that is had been causing pretty much every internal problem I had since I had begun with puberty (i.e. intestinal problems, urinary problems, back problems etc). At the time of my initial diagnosis, the doctor gave me two options; Get pregnant or Have a hysterectomy! WOW! Really? I was only 20, and just getting through college, so you can imagine how neither option was really an OPTION for me. So, I decided to just deal! I went on with it, after all it wasn’t constant. Just about 25 days out of the month, anytime I EVER had intercourse etc. NOT MUCH!
I have been to numerous doctors around the state. Including pelvic pain specialists and doctors that recommended electroshock treatment..Yea, I mean DOWN THERE too! Needless to say I walked out of that office. I have had more procedures than I can really remember, my belly button that was once a cute little one, now looks as if it exploded. I have been on pain pills on and off roughly for almost 10 years now. I have ingested excessive amounts of birth control pills, hormones etc.
At one point I was even told “no babies for you Heather, it probably will never happen”. Well, we all know that turned out to be a different story. From the day I found out I was pregnant, until Mason was about 12 months old, I literally had NO PAIN! None at all, I felt great! But that changed pretty quickly for me.
I began hurting constantly and it was all way too familiar for me to not know what was going on. It had returned, the BIG E! My scarlet letter. I went to my doctor and we discussed my options, as now I was forming cysts and my endometriosis had spread rapidly. Was I ready for a hysterectomy?
I waited over a year to decide and finally, I figured I was just delaying the inevitable it was time to end this and begin a pain free life. I was in a way very excited about it. After all, I really knew only one way of life and that was with the pain.
So, October 2008 I went into surgery one woman and came out someone totally different. I had to wait for 6 months to go on any type of hormones to make sure that the endometriosis was all gone first so I dealt with all the effects of menopause which were not pretty for me, but even scarier for my loved ones since they were the ones that got most of my wrath. Over a year later, for the first time in my life, I really thought that I was in control of my body. I had no pain, no hot flashes, no night sweats, NO PAIN! NONE! I felt great. Was that it? Was it over?
Not by a long shot Heather!
The happiness did not last very long for me. Pain returned a few months ago. I never even gave endometriosis another thought, after all that is why I had all my girly organs removed to get rid of it. Over the past two months, I went to over 5 doctors and had man different diagnoses. I was finally sent to a surgeon with the prognosis of a hernia. Okay great surgery again! The surgeon sat down and talked with me and we began talking about my history of endometriosis. I laughed at him, because I just figured he hadn’t read my chart clearly. I had a hysterectomy, there is no way it can be that. Since, nothing showed up on any scans (including the so-called hernia), the next step was a laparoscopy to check things out.
Long story short, there is no cure for it people. Estrogen is the Miracle Grow for endometriosis. That is the only thought I have. It came back! I have been home since Friday recovering from my surgery and while I am happy that they found out the answer for my recent pain, I am so angry that it is what it is. I now have to stop taking my hormones and go back to the zombie that is me in menopause, and I am scared. I am so scared to have to go back to that.
I just had to tell someone. I wanted to do this, so that men and woman together understand how common it is to have Endometriosis. Many woman don’t realize it until it is too late. Some catch it early. But now matter when you catch it, just know that it will be there for good. There is no cure, especially if you are on hormones, which I cannot imagine life without them. Sadly, now I have to deal without for a while, but that is my scarlet letter. The BIG E! I am not complaining, I am just tired. I am tired of it always being there. But life does go on with or without hormones, with or without pain. It goes on. After all, I made it this far with it.. What is the rest of my life?
That is all. I hope this at least helps someone understand. Pain is not normal! And for Men.. Just be supportive, she can’t help it.. Really.

Peace n love..

Sunday, July 4, 2010

4th of July Vent

I am having a hard time getting motivated at all lately. Today is the 4th and I have been home all day attempting to rest off this "summer cold" I was blessed with this past week. Something about muggy hot weather just makes a cold that much worse. So the day is just about over and it is now coming up on fireworks time. My boys are on their way home from visiting and I am being expected to actually leave the house to go watch fireworks, and to tell you the truth I don't want to leave the house. I just want to sleep.

Don't get me wrong, I have always loved fireworks. My all time favorite is sparklers. I am not sure why, I think it is because I ALWAYS remember sparklers as a child. Not those little sparklers though, the long ones that have the pink stick, they last alot longer. Those were the only ones my dad would let us play with while he lit off the ones that we could possibly blow our hands off with. I want Mason to have the same memories of the fourth of July. I want him to write his name in the air with it and watch the letters slowly disappear.

I guess I am just venting today. I really don't have a point that I am trying to reach. I just wanted to let it out that I am trying to feel better, even though I am pretty sure everyone believes otherwise. That is the great thing about my blog.. I can say what I want and I don't have to wait for a reply or anything. It's like my shrink that I don't pay. I am going to drink some caffeine and get a bit of motivation I think. I don't want to disappoint my baby today. I am going to take pictures of some fireworks and my sons face when he hears the big booms and cracks.


Peace Love and TheraFlu..