How Endometriosis Created a Monster Inside of Me
My days differ on a day-to-day basis. You never know what side of me will come out. It’s either the sweet, lovey girl or the I-hate-the-world, leave-me-alone girl. While I try my hardest to be that sweet girl, the reality is, I’m not.
I used to be. I still try to be. But I’m not. And it is not because I don’t love the people in my life. I do with my whole heart. It’s because what is going on inside of my body has taken over the girl I once was. The girl who used to laugh at anything now stares with a blank face. The girl who just wanted to be held and hugged hates when anyone touches her. The girl who could light up a whole room when she walks in has had her light bulb burn out.
I’m quiet. I don’t laugh as much. And I certainly am not a romantic. Where did that girl go? How can an illness be so cruel? Why do women have to struggle with this?
The funny thing is, that girl is still in me. She wants to come out, and is begging to come out. But the illness inside of me won’t let her. I don’t really remember when I left my body and let this new monster inside. I have always been anxious and moody, of course, aren’t we all? But then, I could control it. I have no control of myself anymore. It is like I am in the middle of a boxing ring with my body every day, and my feet are glued to the ring so I can’t move, I can’t fight.
Things I used to love have become distant memories. Every day is a struggle to not cry, to not get mad and to stay calm. Endometriosis is so much more than just pain. It truly is a monster staking out in our bodies, waiting for the perfect moment to attack. I never know if I am going to laugh, cry or yell at something. My hormones are broken. I feel like I am stuck in a moody teenager’s body, and I cannot get out.
Some days I feel ridiculous over things I cry or get angry at, and it is tough because I don’t think people truly understand that I am not able to control my emotions and I simply can’t just “relax” when I am angry – that’s not how my body is tuned. Sometimes it is hard for me to understand jokes because I am extra sensitive. I always think someone is taking a jab at me, even if they aren’t trying to be mean.
Endometriosis does not just affect you physically; you are mentally and emotionally affected also. It is tiresome worrying if what you ate or did that day is going to hurt you. It is stressful being so exhausted and not being able to fix it with just a “nap.” And it is heartbreaking not knowing if and when you are going to snap at your loved one. The monster inside is in control.
But do you want to know something? I am a warrior. This illness found me because it knew I can kick the crap out of it. Right now may be tough, later down the road may still be tough, but I am a fighter. I will fight this monster and be in control once again. For those struggling with this monster inside of them, you too can fight it. And for those who have to deal with us and our monsters, please, be patient, be kind, be understanding and, most importantly, be there for us to fall on.
Here is a quick exercise I want you to do every morning (or night). It has really helped me look my monster in the eye and build my confidence back!
Go and look in the mirror and repeat these five things out loud:
1. “I will not be defeated by endo.”
2. “Every day I wake up alive is just another day I have defeated this debilitating disease.”
3. “Whatever my dreams are, I will achieve them.”
4. “I am better than the monster inside of me.” (Believe me, you are.)
5. “If I want something bad enough, I will not stop fighting for it.”
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