This is a wonderfully powerful story shared by Kelly.
My name is Kelly. I’ve experienced symptoms of endometriosis for about 3 1/2 to 4 years. I was 28 and was in the beginning of a new relationship. I was not on any birth control at the time because I had an awful time on the depo-provera shot in my earlier twenties and any pill I tried always had side effects too. One gave me low libido which is birth control in itself! I took an emergency contraceptive (which BTW is equivalent to taking a whole pack at once) to prevent pregnancy after my guy and I had unprotected sex. In the next week I had to go to the emergency room with severe pain on my right side and was diagnosed with an ovarian cyst and I was told to follow up with my doctor and do the “wait and see” method.
My mom swears this is when all my problems started and I guess she’s right! The cyst was awful. I sometimes had pain for 3 days after having sex and the heavy pain medicine just made me feel heavy and depressed. During this time I met a woman who practiced Ayurveda and gave me coaching on a herb regimen and prescribed castor oil packs. After two months I had a follow up ultra sound and the cyst was completely gone!! The castor oil packs had worked but my pain wasn’t completely gone. I started experiencing very painful periods and extreme fatigue. My pain was exasperated when I’d eat and I started to be very scared of eating when I was on my period because it could easily make my pain level go from moderate to extreme, being keeled over in tears. I have a medium build but I had become very thin because I was so scared to eat anything. I had lost my job because I was calling in so much. This was the darkest time I had with my pain because I had no idea what was happening to my body. I lost my dad very traumatically two years prior and I was just beginning to really grieve. It was a tough time, needless to say.
I’ve never had a medical diagnosis of endometriosis. I went to a gynecologist once with my symptoms and they wanted to prescribe me naproxen for the pain and just to wait and see what happened. The doctor told me “I hope you don’t have endometriosis” and the only way to know for sure is by surgery. I didn’t feel the need at this point to pursue surgery so I continued to research myself and I found Melissa’s site as well as others and decided to change my diet. I cut out dairy, gluten, sugar and red meat. I tried to get my nutrients from an organic plant-based diet with some meats like organic turkey and chicken. My energy was so much better and my pain days were greatly reduced. I’ve also found it beneficial to eat cooked and warming soups and vegetables during my cycle to reduce the pain I experience during digestion. I’m drawn to natural and homeopathic healing. I see an Ayurvedic practitioner and I learned to do self-care practices along with my diet. Vaginal steam baths with herbs that support a woman’s body and castor oil packs are just a couple examples of some of the practices I’ve learned and am trying to incorporate into my lifestyle.
I also exercise regularly and do yoga. I don’t take synthetic drugs because I want to protect my digestion. I use cramp bark when I have pain days. I still experience some pain with my cycle but I am confident things are getting better and better! It’s a journey…
I think the most important thing I’ve learned from having endometriosis is to love myself and embrace my femininity. For most of us the culture we live in has taught us the opposite. We’ve been taught that our cycle is something to dread each month and even go to lengths to stop our cycle with birth control. Menstruating women were once relieved of their typical obligations and would rest and rejuvenate and eat delicious foods, be creative, laugh and sing and whatever else they needed to do that nourished their bodies and mind. We live in a predominantly masculine driven culture and are taught that we need to show up with the same energy output everyday when it is in our nature to pull away from the demands in our life and just have this time to turn inwards and reflect on what is working and maybe no longer working in our lives. I believe in honoring my body’s natural rhythms.
I have learned to pay attention to what my body is trying to tell me when I’m near my cycle and if I need more rest I give my body more rest and I am not critical of myself if I need a little more “ME” time. I don’t over schedule myself with any extra obligations. I tell my boyfriend and friends and family that I need time to myself, if I feel like being alone. I write in my journal, I prepare delicious and nutritious meals, take long baths, naps, do my nails, etc. It can be a wonderful excuse to give back to yourself and really show some love to the most important person, YOU! When my period ends I have so much more energy for my loved ones and I do better at work because I allowed myself that time to honor the natural rhythms of my body. My healing journey is about loving myself completely and accepting that where I am at is exactly where I need to be and enjoying the present moment. It took a long time for my body to have an imbalance so it may take a little bit longer to heal but I will continue to nourish it with healthy foods, exercise and do self-care practices but most importantly I will focus on what’s going on in my life and what areas I would like to improve upon. I think with endo we want to get better before we make a big leap like change of career, etc. But what if we embraced what we really want without fear? I think that is the key to my healing. Healing is body and mind so I try give my emotional health just as much thought as my body. I am going back to school and I’m looking for a more fulfilling job.
The job I have is very considerate and forgiving when I have pain but that may be the only reason I’ve stayed. I have developed a fear that I have to stay in this comfortable niche I’ve made because I fear I may not be able to find another job that works when I experience pain and I’ve decided that I’m no longer going to view my world as having limitations and I’m going to go after more rewarding work. Just one of the many ways I’m learning self love.
I still have some ways to go but I am exactly where I need to be!!!
Keep empowering yourselves!!!
Much love being sent to all sisters!!!
Thank you so much for sharing your very empowering story with us, Kelly.
A few things Kelly has mentioned in her story which may be able to guide you personally:
1. Castor oil packs. You can find out how to do that on my website here.
2. The REACH principles. Kelly has followed almost all of the REACH Technique© principles, which allowed her to feel in control of her Endometriosis by signing up to my free download below.
If you would like to reach out to Kelly personally or wish to share your thoughts, please do so, in the comments below.
How do you give yourself care and love at that time of the month? Do you take the time out? Do you respect your body’s desire for rest?