What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue that normally lines the uterus grows in other parts of the body. With each menstrual cycle when the lining is shed the tissue outside the uterus also bleeds. This bleeding causes inflammation and scar tissue, adhesions, scar tissue and cysts can also form.
I went through life thinking feeling extremely bloated and pain, not bad pain, the first couple of days of my period were normal. While many have excruciating pain, I count my lucky stars that I didn’t have unbearable pain.
Crazy to think that we were always told “this is normal” growing up I would take a panadol and put on a heat bag and get on with it. Knowing what I know now I would have sought help with someone more experienced.
Years of trying to conceive and being unsuccessful we went in search of a specialist to help. First cycle was horrendous! But no investigations were performed so we moved on and this is where we met the wonderful Dr Kee Ong.
After 2 cycles with Kee and multiple failed embryos transferred he finally persuaded me to have a laparoscopy. (He was trying for a long time before but me being a nurse I knew too much and let’s be honest, I was scared).
I kept thinking there is no point! You won’t find anything! In a way I wanted kee to find something so I would get answers but I was also scared to hear what he might say.
Here is me about to go in for my first lap.
I couldn’t believe it when I woke up and had 4 port holes. Kee always said if I had 2 he wouldn’t find anything, anything more than that meant I had Endo and he would excise it for me. (Excuse the blood).
I had a moderate amount of Endo removed. It came as such a shock because I never believed I had it. Minimal symptoms, minimal pain and no way of assuming I would. Aside from not being able to have a baby I was oblivious to Endometriosis.
Straight after my first laparoscopy my embryos started to implant. I couldn’t believe it! Endometriosis can play a huge role in stopping embryos implanting in the uterus. It can wreak havoc on your body inside without you even knowing.
After another year of recurrent miscarriages and again multiple failures it was time again to have another look inside.
Again more Endo found, again it had grown back, again in different parts of my body that it wasn’t in, in the first place.
Again another shock! A lot of Endo this time around my pouch of Douglas!
I won’t lie I honestly never believed it could or would happen to me. Call me naive, or not in tune with my body but having regular cycles and no pain I didn’t think.
Here is a pic of my tummy before my period arrives. To me I always thought was normal. When I showed kee he straight away knew it wasn’t. How did no one bother to investigate prior to this?
That’s not a pregnant belly! That’s an Endo belly!
In 2018 I was asked to become and ambassador for QEdno. I jumped at the chance. Raising much needed awareness for Women’s health I have always been passionate about. I always will be.
Experiencing loss, infertility, and years of heartache makes it more important for me to ensure that other women should feel and know they aren’t alone. I’m here for you and with you.
While I still don’t have my take home baby after years of IVF and trying, I know I am not far off. Small glimmers of hope keep me going.
Don’t ever give up on your journey, seek the right help, advocate for yourself and don’t let someone try and tell you its normal. It isn’t!
Here s Emily Jade and I at the QEndo lunch. Both had very similar journeys and both passionate about creating awareness.