Living in the limelight, people only see what you choose to show.

LIVING WITH ENDOMETRIOSIS – A WOMAN’S PERSPECTIVE

The difficulty you face with regards to your health issues. How you were diagnosed, the symptoms and how you deal with it.

My name is Chantelle Owens, 25 years old and happily married – and I’m a #EndoWarrior

Living in the limelight, people only see what you choose to show. They feel like they know you but have NO idea what is going on behind the scenes. They have no idea that your smile might be forced, standing there with cameras and flashes all over trying to hold your composure while you are in so much pain. The pain becomes… normal. The pain is sometimes so bad that I pass out from it.

Chantelle Owens

I think what is the most frustrating for women are that other people judge our pain. They don’t understand what we are going through. I remember the first time I had the most excruciating endo pain, went to the ER and the (male) Doctor that was on duty simply said: “Are you sure it’s not just your normal menstrual pain?” I wanted to smack him right there and then… after I insisted on a sonar, that is when they found the cyst on my ovary (this all happened when I was about 17 years old) and so my endo journey began.

Up to date, I’ve had 5 surgeries, seen countless Doctors and was only diagnosed last year after 8 years with endometriosis. Insane!

I find it totally disgraceful that we so often get to do with discrimination especially when it comes to our health. Who gives a Doctor the right to question the way we feel? What gives them the right to assume that our pain is all in our head? I read every day how sisters are being told that they cannot be in so much pain. How will these Doctors know if they do not walk in our shoes…

Especially male Doctors who have never experienced period pain for a day in their lives!

Now you will ask me, what exactly is Endometriosis?
The best way to describe it without medical terms; in the body of a woman with Endometriosis, the lining of the uterus (endometrium) that is shed every month is unable to be shed, so it is reabsorbed by the body. It then sticks to other organs and grows like weeds in a garden wrapping around and over other organs. Endometriosis causes chronic pain, sometimes infertility and bowel malfunctions and chronic fatigue.

There is no known cure.

I have to keep reminding myself that living with a chronic endometriosis, doesn’t make me less of a woman. I let go of the fear of maybe never being able to have kids of my own. I learnt that through all the pain… you find yourself through it. Everything falls into place, and will work out for the good. Never let someone else define you, you are perfect just the way you are.

Join me next year for the Annual Worldwide Endometriosis walk to help raise awareness!
#BeStrong #SpeakOut

Twitter:  @MrsOwensC

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Dear friends, family and other interesting creatures,

During the month of August I have contacted a few woman and asked them to share some of their stories  Subject choice is up to the writer and I trust you will enjoy this introduction to the special females on my various platforms. If you want to be part of this series, mail me wenchy@mweb.co.za

Happy Woman’s Month!

I wish you enough,

Wenchy

“What makes the desert beautiful,” said the little prince, “is that somewhere it hides a well…”

Dear friends and other interesting creatures,

I have readers, loyal and long suffering readers that have been around 20 years next year (party?), and when I don’t blog, they text, email or whatsapp me messages to ask “Everything ok?” “You ok?”You gotta love it, right?

Thank you for knowing me well enough not to phone me. No idea however why I have not received flowers, cupcakes or chocolate…. although to be perfectly honest, if you can deliver low carb meals, snacks or general groceries to my house I will be forever grateful. #Smile

Everything is OK. I am permanently completely exhausted. Not tired, not need a break, not take the day off… It’s a much more intense level of EXHAUSTION. Although in all honesty, I do believe @SirNoid and I are in need of a serious holiday.

It is on an I can’t deal, I can’t think, I can’t remember,  I can’t reason, I’m too sore, it’s too much, please help me, without me asking, kinda tired.

Naturally having very close to no iron in my body, does contribute towards my levels of exhaustion.

It is VERY unpleasant and I’ve really fallen very much out of love with having no energy. None. Physically. Mentally. Emotionally. Medically. Every level I may have skipped, please include it, and tick that box.

December and some of January, I was in severe pain, not coming downstairs, just staying in bed, “wish me luck as you wave me goodbye” kinda pain. Christmas, New Year is all a blur really.

I felt very aware of how scary or helpless this must have been for @SirNoid, but also for our 15 year old son Douglas. I think it was one of the first times Doug saw me mid pain attack, crying, asking @SirNoid to help with small things. Pour water, help me down the stairs, covering my legs like I’m 104 years old because the heat and the little pressure helps the pain,  while other times having any fabric touch my skin0 is hell. It is very confusing for all of us!

@SirNoid like many, expresses his helplessness and wanting to make it better, in getting angry, … but I’ve come to realise I don’t know who to direct my anger at. This acceptance bit is a bitch. I’m nowhere near accepting any of this.

I feel excessively exposed and vulnerable… Chronic illness has stolen from me, my husband and children which leaves me with more pent up anger.  Yes, it has been suggested a bit of counselling may go a long way.

I saw a new Rheumatologist &  Specialist Physician this past week.  For someone with “ailments”, I actually do not enjoy going to the doctor.

She was very proper and I liked that she saw ME, and spoke to ME as a person and not a number. The consultation was all consuming and as she predicted by the time I was done,  I felt a small tractor may have driven over me.

She has requested previous documents from other doctors and off course, ran more tests. She wants to compile a time line and see which of the illnesses is doing what, and seriously attack the anemia and find out why my body doesn’t hold onto iron.

The Fibromyalgia and Ankolysing Spondylitis can put on quite a show I tell you!

Looking at my anemic self, she took me off certain meds and gave me more pain meds to take until we have a plan of action.

Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them. –  Le Petit Prince (1943)

I don’t know the answers, only to try every day . Sometimes successfully and others not.

I wonder if anyone truly knows how much goes into pretending I’m feeling well?
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I wish you enough,
Wenchy