Today marks exactly one year since I had surgery and was diagnosed with endometriosis. Oh how my life has changed.
The pain has come and gone. I had some good months over the past year and I am so grateful for those times. Overall, though, I’m not doing well. The last few months have been particularly awful. The pain has been unbearable more days than not. The fatigue is everlasting, regardless how much I sleep or how much coffee I drink. And the emotional disaster that I am is probably a struggle for everyone around me.
Often I think about all the things I used to do, but am no longer able. Working out. Hiking. Driving long distances. Laundry. Walking the dog. Grocery shopping. Meeting friends for dinner. I pretty much used to do anything other than lay on the couch for hours on end. Now, it seems, that’s about all I do. Recent days have looked a little something like this: wake up, go to work (lucky if I last all day), come home and lay on the couch with my two heating pads and pain killers, and go to bed. This is no way to live, especially for someone as active and adventurous as I used to be.
This horrible disease has taken so much from me. I don’t feel like myself anymore. I hate being in pain 24/7. I hate that I can’t focus on my job. I hate that I am unable to help around the house. I hate being tired all the time. I hate feeling lazy. I hate that I have to rest after taking a shower. I hate that people are worried about me. I hate feeling weak, physically and mentally. I hate that no one understands what it’s like. I hate medical bills. I hate that every few months it’s time to “try something new” in hopes of finding relief, but the relief never comes. I hate it all.
As miserable as this disease has been, it has taught me so much and that, I love. I love that I am more understanding of other people’s struggles. I love that no matter how weak I feel, I know I can keep fighting. I love that I’ve found out who truly cares. I love that I’ve learned to advocate for myself. I love the awareness it has brought, and that I can now help educate others. I love the brave women I have met who do actually understand. I love how little I take for granted anymore. I love the hopeful days.
Today is a hopeful day. Even though as I write this, there is a war going on in my pelvis, my hip aches, and my headache is setting in, I have hope. I am hopeful that one day I will get the “old” me back, but the “new” me will be stronger and wiser than ever. I am hopeful that one day there will be a cure for endometriosis, and until then, that effective treatments will be discovered. I am hopeful that one day prevention will be possible, so no one has to suffer any longer. I am hopeful that one day my story will inspire other women to keep fighting. I am hopeful that today and everyday, I can use my struggle to educate.
Tomorrow may be a hopeless day. You see, I just never know what is in store for me from day to day or even hour to hour. What I do know is that if I just keep going, another hopeful day will come. I’ll hold on for the hopeful days, the enlightened days, the low pain days. It won’t be easy, but I’ll just keep holding on.
Here’s to a years worth of fighting. Hopefully March 10, 2017 will bring a much better “year in review”. Thanks so much for reading! Sending love to you all.