I’ve always known that my story was meant for something greater than just the experiences I have had, and I was reminded last week about how strong I really am and how much my story should be told. If in my sharing, I help just one woman who is going through the same thing, then this is worth it.
If you, or anyone you know, has dealt with chronic pain, it’s one of the hardest things to go through. It eats away at your soul. It attacks you physically, emotionally and mentally. It’s so difficult having an invisible illness that includes chronic pain, because on the outside, it’s as if you are the same as everyone else, but on the inside, it’s a totally different story.
My everyday life has always been 3 really great weeks and one really difficult week, every month, every year, without fail. Since I was 14, I’ve been diagnosed with a disease called Endometriosis. My Endometriosis causes pain like I’ve never experienced before, and I’ve experienced some real pain over the course of my life! If feels like I have barbed wire swimming around in my belly, digging in with each and every move I make. It’s constant and consistent, and every passing month, it just gets a little worse.
Here’s what I have tried so far: 2 surgeries, 2 rounds of medically induced menopause, 6 years of shots in my hip every 3 months, years and years and years of more shots, pills, hormones, appointments, drugs, and doctors upon doctors telling me I was faking it, that I was a drug abuser, that I need to just take Advil and get over it, that it wasn’t that bad, and then having to fly out of state every 3 months for the last two years just to get my prescription.
This last month was the first time in about 15 years that I had to go through it without my pain medication. There was a mix up with my prescription, and I had no choice but to fight it alone. I honestly didn’t think I was going to make it. For the first 4 days, I struggled to teach, to stand, to smile, to be normal. By the end of the 4th day, I couldn’t even fake it anymore. Every moment that I wasn’t at work, I was home crying because the pain was so severe. The next 4 days I didn’t leave my bed. I got up only a few times a day and went straight back to lay down. I was either in tears, throwing up, or I was sleeping out of exhaustion. I was so tired and frustrated and reeling from the constant pain that would never go away. I started to doubt everything about myself and it took me to a darkness that I hated being a part of.
This disease will never go away for me. It’s a disease with no cure, very little info and very few doctors that take the time to understand it. There aren’t any big foundations fighting for it or support groups to handle it, except for this one! I realized just how little information is out there, and it makes me really sad. I know there are women out there just like me, suffering from pain so severe that it rules every moment.
I have fought and fought for my pain medication, and it makes those days functional. I feel normal, and I can focus and do everything that I would do otherwise. Not everyone is that lucky.
I’m not sure what my next steps are, but after going through last week, I’m thinking of some things that I’d like to try to remind those of us with this awful disease that we’re not in this alone. No one should ever have to go through that alone.
The informational content of this article is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.
This story is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.