Just over three months ago I had surgery.
I feel like a broken record at this point but, in summary, I had a laparoscopy to investigate and excise endometriosis and had a mirena inserted while I was under (for more on that you can check out my surgery and recovery post here).
Since I put up that post, I’ve had my post-op appointment and started in a physiotherapy clinical trial at my hospital.
In my follow up appointment I got to see photos of inside my pelvis from the surgery and where the tissue they removed was, and had it confirmed that it was in fact endometriosis.
The perks of being treated in multiple disciplines in the same hospital is that I already knew my diagnosis going into this appointment because my physiotherapist was able to check in my file in my introduction appointment to her trial.
Which I appreciated no end, what I and so many other women like me have experienced in regards to our pain is this persistence to find a cause before really taking treatment seriously.
I’ve been lucky, I have a great GP (finally) and gynaecologist, but theres always this lingering notion of having to find out what is actually wrong to validate my pain.
A lot of that has ended up affecting the way I think about my own pain, really feeling like I need a diagnosis to validate my pain and feel like this was going to move forward.
I wasn’t nervous about the procedure itself, I was nervous that they weren’t going to find anything, that I still wouldn’t have an answer.
I think it was a little unnerving to those around me that I was excited to go into surgery, but I reached a point where I was so desperate to find something to help my pain that I undergone any procedure I was referred to.
This was, in hindsight, not a great way to go in to this. Not because I shouldn’t have been hopeful, but because I was putting all of my hope into this fixing me.
I had this expectation that I would recover and I wouldn’t be in pain anymore, which I knew was unrealistic, but I ignored that because I needed it to be.
That made my recovery really rough, still not knowing whether I was going through all of this with no result.
When my body didn’t bounce straight back from surgery, when I needed painkillers, when my body was exhausted so quickly, I didn’t cope.
This was supposed to fix me, and I still didn’t know if they had found endometriosis or not, so was I going through all of this for nothing? To go back to square one?
I knew that because I hadn’t heard anything it couldn’t have been worse than what they were assuming to find, not knowing if they found anything was really difficult.
However, knowing that I have endometriosis and having it removed hasn’t stopped my pain, which isn’t uncommon.
That’s a hard reality to come to terms with, that the tissue damage can be fixed, but the pain can persist, but I’m very lucky to have been placed into a clinical trial to help me understand and treat my pain, which I’m half way through and feel really positively about.
This has been a very up and down period with some very low lows, and has required a lot of learning, about my pain and myself.
Living with chronic pain is exhausting, and I’m eternally grateful to all of the doctors and practitioners who have listened to me, validated me and helped me get to this point.
I also really want to thank my mum, for reassuring me, looking after me, supporting me and listening to me cry over the phone and in person.
And thank you to everyone reading this, for being here and giving me a supportive place to process and cry about my pain.