Zarina lives in Jacksonville, Florida. She was diagnosed with endometriosis in 2003. This is her story.
“When I was first diagnosed with endometriosis, I was relieved to know the pain wasn’t in my head,” says Zarina.
There was comfort in knowing that her pain was real, that she wasn’t just making it up.
Every year, women go undiagnosed with endometriosis. When they talk to their doctors, they often leave with more questions. Many doctors, unaware of the symptoms of endometriosis, will prescribe birth control pills or pain medication, a quick band aid that will not help heal the wound.
Zarina knows first hand what it’s like to go through the pain of endometriosis, and she knows it is real.
“Killer cramps and painful sex are not normal,” Zarina says. She wants other women to know that it is safe to voice your concerns and talk to your doctors. Especially when you are living in constant pain.
“Seven laparoscopic surgeries, Lupron Depot, birth control pills, physical therapy, superior hypo-gastric plexus block, a few more that I can’t remember because it was many years ago. There are no words to describe the pain,” she says.
“The worse pain I’ve ever felt in my life. Pain that makes piercings and tattoos seem like a walk in the park. I should know, I have 3 tattoos and 16 ear piercings.”
There are days when she will try anything to get rid of the pain. She has tried natural remedies and prescribed medications. But sometimes she just has to endure the pain.
“Endo sometimes tries to take my happy,” she confesses. “But I try not to let it.”
She focuses on the things that do make her happy like her boyfriend and doing yoga. It’s the little things like working out that can put a smile on her face.
According to Fitness magazine, exercise plays an important role in reducing endometriosis symptoms. “The good news is that regular exercise and reducing your BMI naturally, lower the body’s estrogen levels, which helps alleviate some of the worst symptoms and in some cases may even prevent the disease in the first place.”
Along with working out, Zarina is playing an active role in engaging the endometriosis community and fighting for awareness. It is important to Zarina to let other women know that they are not suffering alone.
“My hope for the future is that [they will] find a cure for this awful disease,” says Zarina. In the meantime, Zarina says she wants to continue to “raise awareness, so no one has to go through what I endure on a daily basis.”
March is Endometriosis Awareness month and I wanted to share a little happiness with other endo sisters across the world. That’s why I have created the Endo Can’t Take My Happy project. For the month of March, I will profile women with endometriosis to show that we are all battling this together, and we will not let endo take our happiness.
If you would like to participate, please comment below or email me firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please follow along with me on twitter with hashtag #EndoCan’tTakeMyHappy and tweet me pictures of your own happy moments. Tweet me @Sooktonsays.