I am 45 years old and have had endometriosis for over 25 years.
Oh goodness, so much to tell! Bad cramps when I first got my period 8th grade, but I thought everyone had cramps. Years went by with just period pain, could handle that, not too severe. Got married when I was 23 and could not get pregnant (see the infertility page), so upsetting, but I finally saw an infertility Dr. who suggested a laporoscopy and I was diagnosed finally. Many years of bad periods, extreme knife stabbing cramps, sick exhaustion with period and also VERY SEVERE PMS-no doubt that I was estrogen dominant. Many fertility Drs. for 10 years, oh my life was obsessed with this!! Birth control pills, Clomid... hormones messed up and medication for this, every test in the world done and everyday thinking about how I wanted a baby so much. I was jealous of everyone who had kids(another chapter). I thought about adoption, but really thought "I want a baby to look like my husband" and not really that interested, but we did apply for adoption anyways. Pain now controlling my life more, but never did I want to see another Dr. ever again. 10 years of it-no more treatments!
It got worse- the pain and also the sickness with periods, anxiety - PMS (see the pms page) was so crazy/manic crying fits, ask my husband about it-he has some stories, he says I hissed at him one night. I just hated my husband for no reason a week before my period and then I would start my period, the pms would disappear and I was left with guilt for treating him so horribly, I was in so much pain I did not think of the guilt much. What a wonderful husband I have, it was not easy for him. The period ended but then I had to recover from it, sort of like I was recovering from the flu.
We adopted our kids-oh what Blessings! the most perfect children in the world, I think of course. Such Joy! It was all meant to be this way and I am so glad now and thankful that I never got pregnant. I would never love children as much as I do, unless this all happened. Waiting certainly makes you appreciate them more!
Anxiety attacks came because of my health. I worried so much about everything and how to take care of my kids, the future, being sick....years of this that no one knew-I did not even relate any of this to my whacked out hormones at the time either, but that played a big part. I will not explain all of it, but I was frozen in fear a bit, prayed so much" Lord help me" but really I did not know him. The anxiety, endless same cycle every month continued for a while and the panic attacks also but somehow everything remained together, my family, my business, everything! I did come to know Christ at this time. I prayed non-stop, read the Bible...which was my peace. I feel he was calling me towards him, but I am very stubborn and it took a while for me to rely on him. He ended my anxiety and I was drawn to knowing more, was feeling different, felt more peace & less worry, real strange how I felt better mentally, but physically did not.
I was complaining about cramps one day to my sons tutor and she told me her daughter also had endometriosis and was using natural progesterone cream for it. She gave me a tube. The cramps got better and better, some months no cramps. I had not been to a gyno. for years, but I felt that I would try anything. It worked so well! Having the pain gone was wonderful, but I was still left with sickness, fatigue, pms... better - but far from good.
Fast forward to October 2003: So fed up with the cycle of it all-pms 8 days before period, sick with period, recovery and with a 26 day cycle there were not too many good days left. Most days were filled with fatigue. I felt that I could not handle it anymore! I slept everyday, but amazingly the best year of my business career. My 11 year old son was such a help with my daughter, but I was always sleeping. I broke down and went to the gyno. I needed a break, wanted to go on the pill. He said "the pill contains estrogen and estrogen causes endo to grow" I talked of a hysterectomy. He said "You should try Lupron 1st as a trial to see how you would feel without a period, some women are not helped by hysterectomy's" I said I will think about it, but No Way! Researched Lupron on the ob-gyn site and was adamant about never trying it. The pain was not a major problem anymore with the progesterone cream that I continued. The periods were horrible though: stomach, bladder, bowel, major fatigue, body spasms at night, heart palpitations, pain at my belly button, pms, gas..there is more. It seemed like every month I was worse. No way out~I thought at times. Prayed a lot.
Went a little crazy in a good way though, not too many knew about all of this except family of course and really they did not know the extent of it all. I isolated myself, missed many events but how can you explain it to people really and I am not a complainer. I had gone to a small church, but they did not know either, my fault, hard for me to reach out to people. Like I said I went a little crazy outside of myself, prayed so much for help, researched endo and was shocked! I could have been so much worse. I wrote a letter to the pastor of my church explaining how bad my health was, I broke down at bible study, I needed to make a choice. I wanted a hysterectomy but I could not choose it, wanted it chosen for me, somehow like a cyst bursting or some other emergency where I did not have to make a decision.
I asked everyone to pray for me, something very hard for me to do! Knew that this is what the Lord wanted from me- to reach out that is. I searched the internet and saw alternative treatments. What is this I thought, but worth a shot! I felt led to a certain Dr. The treatment was unbelievable! Liquid horrendous herbal tonic that was like drinking gasoline, amino acids, vitamins, progesterone cream....27 pills a day, 9 tonics a day & not tasty! But I felt led to him, so I continued the treatment. I knew it would work! Just felt it, put " Lord Please Heal Me" on every herbal bottle and vitamin container. I felt some results in a week and continued to feel better until Christmas, just like the Dr said "You will feel so much better by Christmas" He was right! I had 3 great months! 90% better and so many symptoms gone. I was normal on my period, not tired, really cannot remember any health problems, if there was anything it was so slight, that is why I say 90% better. Incredible really how this treatment worked-nourished every gland in my body, detoxed the liver, balanced my hormones...
I got the flu in March 2004 after feeling great for months. I had not had the flu for 10 years. It lasted only 24 hours, but seemed to throw everything off balance. My period came early after the flu and it was bad, also at the same time, my Dr. changed the herbal treatment and we agreed to cut down further on treatment, as I was getting better, come to some maintenance plan. I explained which bottle of herbs worked & when I was the best, but he was not listening and he sent me a different herbal combination...
I was getting worse again and I did not want to continue with this Dr. who would not listen!! I know my body come on. The prices were outrageous anyways, I could not afford it! I prayed so much what do I do? I Felt the Lord leading me to another naturopathic Dr., the nicest sweetest woman in the world she is and the price is amazingly low. The treatment is easy compared to what I had done. She said mix the fish oil with cranberry juice, hey no problem I can take this straight, nothing compared to what I had drank!
5-19-2004 I have been seeing her for 3 weeks and incredibly feel an improvement, period is not here yet, but I am very hopeful. Less herbs, more vitamins, more progesterone cream, estrogen clearing diet...
I write this story and think wow I have been through a lot! I really do not feel that way though and everyone has always thought I am a very sunny person-they just did not see me in the down times I guess. One major difference is when I asked Christ in my life about 5 years ago(see the "Don't read" page). He is my true peace, my helper, I rarely worry about anything anymore and even though there are hard times in all of life, I look back on all those years as a struggle, but not horrid or anything. Of course there are still emotional and physical down times, but what an amazing contrast in how I feel emotionally, to how I felt years ago without the Lord. This does not mean that my life will be perfect with endometriosis, I am still having occasional pain and chronic fatigue. I do not know how this next period will be, but I have hope that he will pull me through.
6-8-2004 I am doing pretty well, I had 1 very bad PMS day, 1 extreme fatigue day and 1 bad sick feeling day. Cramps were minor with the last period. The diet makes a big difference in energy-but hard to keep it up. I need to go to the store again for lots of fruits and vegetables. One problem is periods have gone to 21 day cycles-oh no!. This has been ever since I got the flu and stopped the major herbs from the 1st Dr., I hope it balances out soon.
6-28-2004 Period is back to 26 days yea! 2 days of pms but way better than last month, even so the depression is not fun, no sickness with period, but medium cramps (was on vacation & forgot many doses of progesterone cream) the homeopathic drops work great for pain, but very hard to keep up every 2 hours. I did have a few hours of intense cramps at a restaurant with no medicine....I asked a woman behind me if she had Tylenol, I would have asked everyone! But then there was a store across the street, so my husband ran there while we waited for our food.
New findings -adrenal gland fatigue (no wonder I am so tired) diagnosed through a saliva test with this new naturopathic Dr. Starting treatment for this which will take 6-12 months. I am very glad to have results on paper that there is a reason for the fatigue and this also contributes to the PMS/anxiety... adrenal gland fatigue caused by stress of this disease no doubt. It is treatable through my naturopathic Dr., more vitamins. I am hoping to end this struggle with chronic fatigue soon.
7-15-2004 Have to post today- Feeling a burst of energy today. I have not felt this good for a long time-very energetic, no doubt that I am progressing, maybe it is all the prayers...just sent out the prayer letter yesterday to the members. Hmmm.
I am 43 now, forget the diet on my birthday, I had cheesecake-so good!
7-20-2004 On my period today and feeling pretty well. No depression, no pain, some anxiety a few days ago and last nite, but took the homeopathic drops that took it away. I had some hours of not being able to think straight, but finding out most all of that is because of the adrenal gland fatigue. Energy level is really improving! Very Happy!! Let me put this in relation though, it is not like I would go out bike riding or anything, will see how tomorrow is, usually the worst day?
7-22-04 Period was a little late, wow maybe everything is getting better and I will start having 28 day cycles, instead of 26-that would be nice. I think that is how it was in my 20's. Anyways I feel very well. Slight cramps last night, but went to a concert and very manageable! Fatigue/sickness during period is loads better. Low cortisol messes up everything which leads to estrogen dominance obviously what I have. The confusion-cannot think straight, chronic fatigue, body twitching, trembling when I get stressed, heart palpitations....all from the lacking cortisol in my body. The pms is worse than the actual period. Feeling hopeful that I will continue improving! Still fighting the fatigue, but getting better...
8-22-04 My period was actually very good! not even a slight bit of cramps this period. I did suffer with PMS a few days before period, but thank goodness it was not the entire day. Also had a mishap when I ate soy Ice cream-PAIN-mid cycle. I did was not start the progesterone cream after my period as quickly as I normally do. As a result of the pain, it sent me into a bit of a panic and depression for a few days. I ran out of the adrenal gland pills, so I think this compounded the fear. Fear of the unknown is the worst thing in the entire world! Yes I am doing so very well, but thinking that I am on the edge of being back to how I used to be is very scary. It is very important to talk about it and not hold it in like I did. Once I told my husband, cried and relied on the Lord, I got back to my normal self. It was torture those few days, fear! Some days I am just tired of fighting this disease.
Feeling great tonight!, so back to the fight that I am determined to win, with the Lord's help of course. I am thinking about trying acupuncture to help progress the healing of my adrenal glands. I have heard from many women on endo-natural who have had very good results. Very hopeful...
9-1-04 If reading this, I would appreciate any prayers as the fatigue can be quite unbearable.
9-5 The Lord has revealed to me what the problem is and that it is my blood sugar causing me chronic fatigue problems, as I have been having hypoglycemic attacks. This all relates to the adrenal glands. Great that I know the problem, but food is not raising my blood sugar as it should. Please pray for wisdom given to my Drs. and a quick resolution which can solve this fatigue.
9-8 On my period-absolutely NO PAIN & NO PMS -YEA!
9-20 Progressing wonderfully with precise supplements YEA! So up and down this year. This makes me wonder about some things. No doubt that I rely on the Lord more as I go through these trials hmm? Honestly I do wish I was 100% better, but to serve him fully, will I do it when I am well all the time?
9-21 My naturopathic dr. called-I am anemic and also lacking B12- gosh more findings that I am sure I have had for years. B12 shots 3 x week for 3 months. Please anyone reading this: we do not have pain for no reason and chronic fatigue is not without reason. There is always an underlying cause. Please push for more thorough testing and perhaps see a naturopathic Dr, if you are not getting anywhere with your normal MD's. Well even when I do get well, staying on a precise diet, taking all my supplements and shots, hey no doubt I will continue relying on the Lord forever!
10-15-2004 2-totally pain free periods, PMS almost non-existent, no sickness, 1 hot flash, fatigue improving greatly but still up and down. Getting much better and that makes me happy!
11-17-2004 Its not over just yet! Periods very good though. I am up to 200 pds. yikes, I have been slowly gaining weight for many years. It really is a big deal because it is a problem with the adrenals, insulin, estrogen imbalance as I am on the perfect diet & exercise but gaining fat weekly. Please Pray. I am being sustained by the b12 shots and feeling better than ever! but come on, this is going to take more time to heal this endocrine mess up. It is sort of a false reading, Yes I am so much better, but No way is everything fixed just yet. Well the Lord will get me through it all once again.
1-8-2005 Better! Still struggling with the weight problem, scale not moving down. As long as I stay stress free, without a cold or too much excitement, than the energy level stays pretty well. It could be better though as my goal is to start going to the gym-that takes a good amount of energy. A few bad days here and there, but every month improving.
2-16-2005 More findings!! Strong reactions to dairy -itching ears, nostrils...a symptom of yeast. ahhhhh Good in a way because it is another one that contributes to the chronic fatigue & I think it is another thing I have battled for a long time. Candida throughout the body. One month treatment to kill off the yeast. My naturopath says that I should really feel well when I am done with treatment. I look forward to that as the fatigue is worse than ever during this treatment! What a great Dr. I have. The Lord has led me in the right direction to curing all my ailments. Imagine how dead tired I used to be! Yes like a walking zombie I was. So many times I got lost on the road and forgot what I was doing or saying. My son had gotten used to finishing my sentences for me.
3-31-2005 One month treatment did not cut it. I have still been detoxing from the candida, the treatment this time is garlic cloves & physicians formula oregano oil-2 drops per day. 2 weeks now and the itching is really fading. The inside of my ears were itching so. so, so bad and my scalp and really not itching on your skin but inside my body. Fatigue has been so very bad during the detox. Today, I will rejoice! It is 2 days now of good energy, so am hoping that I continue progressing. Hey no period problems, no more PMS!!!
4-26-2005 Ok that was grueling, so much time spent in bed. BUT I really do feel my health has taken a turn now. I am feeling pretty well. Napping just occasionally. I am finally back to working full time. Yea! It has only been about a week of feeling this way, so time will tell!
7-15-2005 Still detoxing for candida. Nyastatin for a month. My dr. did a stool test a few weeks ago and I still had a medium amount left. Oh my, imagine how bad I had it-probably a horrific amount. I have been detoxing now almost 5 months. I have read candida and endo commonly go together. I will ask my dr. about this. Well lately so many other endo girls have told me they had/have candida also. Another underlying cause to so many health problems. Feeling very well! I have come so far and now am only improving as I age. This is exactly the way to explain the last almost 2 years of healing. 2 steps up, then 1 step back. Now baby steps up and up....
I am 44 years old now. Praise the Lord for good health! Thank you Jesus!
8-17-2005 2 wks. left of Nystatin and using oregano oil for the die off. I added kefir, which I hope accelerates this. It adds beneficial bacteria to the gut. I also take acidopholis as my Dr. said that you cannot overdose on too much good bacteria. I have been so, so tired through this detox. You see the detox kills the candida and the results are candida symptoms 10 times worse than the norm. I have had some good days and some bad days. There are still some depressing fatigue days, where I read my Bible in bed all day! and cannot work. Periods are great! Maybe I said that before, but want to say it again. Thank You Lord for everything that you have done for me.
9-6 Done with the detox. Yea! Into the Lord's hands I will stay...... Feeling pretty well!
10-21 On my period and better than ever. I may start surfing again. Ha Ha.
2-25-2006 I did have a bleeding polyp removed from my cervix, but other than that I am doing great. Very rare to have any endo problems anymore and also since getting rid of the candida, I do not have to use as much progesterone cream. I have read that sometimes candida and endo go together. Not sure how, but I do know since the candida is gone, I hope? that my endo is better. I now work out ON MY PERIOD with a trainer, so the workouts are intense. My trainer has no idea how far I have come. She just assumes that I am healthy really. Last month I worked out 3 days in a row on days 1-3 of my period. Yes! and no problems. I have no more PMS and feeling very well. Thanks again Lord! Very slowly I am getting in shape and losing weight.
11-5-2006 I was diagnosed with insulin resistance and it seems that is the problem with being unable to lose weight. I keep trying though and not about to give up as I am led to continue with what I am doing. I recently bought a new bicycle and have been having so much fun riding it around town. Sometimes I forget how sick that I used to be. I do not want to forget, because it is an amazing journey to Him.
Jan. 2007 I am gluten and dairy intolerant. Check out www.enterolab.com My test was positive. I have a strong feeling that this is what is wrong with many of us! I am doing well and am FINALLY losing weight.
I read my story above and see how he revealed each ailment slowly to me through the years. I may have gone crazy if I found out all the things that were wrong with me at one time. It is just the way that it was needed. I still struggle with fatigue, but I truly believe that good health is an ongoing process. I also believe that the body works up a tolerance sometimes. I remain on the progesterone cream that keeps me pain free, but I now take a green drink daily and a protein powder and I continue with a great diet. All things work together along with the Lord as the most important, to keep me in good health and to keep me as His servant. I am constantly amazed when I read this website. He truly uses the weak and I was so very weak spiritually, mentally and physically. I also think that I am the healthiest I have ever been in 25 years. Vitamins, exercise, a healthy diet and the Lord Jesus Christ!
Do you know for sure that you are going to be with God in Heaven?? You can be sure. Jesus makes all the above worth it...There is some very good News! Please see here: http://www.theendoclub.com/donotread.htm
Saying all of that, my improvements are staggering!!
Symptoms before treatments:
1) almost suicidal PMS-8 DAYS before period-no exaggeration! anxiety/depression along with it. Estrogen surges-oh yuck.
2) chronic Fatigue-slept all the time-everyday.
3) sharp pain at belly button that was there for 6 months before treatments. MD Drs. said was hernia.
4) constipation or diarrhea especially around period.
5) extreme nausea especially with bowel movement.
6) extreme Pain with periods. Intermittent pain mid cycle-ovary pain.(this was before the natural progesterone cream)
7) painful sex
8) heart palpitations
9) body jerking when I lay down
10) major bloated stomach!!!
11) easily bruising-always had bruises on my legs
12) felt like I had the flu with period
13) hot flashes/night sweats
14) acne 8 days b4 period-when PMS hit
16) multiple ovarian cysts
17) frequent urination-I mean like 20 x a day.
18) major gas-food was not digesting
19) felt like a truck hit me when I woke up every morning & did not sleep well.
20) weight Gain for absolutely no reason
21) major Chronic Yeast Infections-every few months, sometimes monthly.
23) brain Fog
No exaggeration girls, I was so bad off!
Gosh this really makes me thankful for my improvements. Praise God!
-It seems my adrenal glands are not 100%, as if I get stressed a bit then I get tired for a few days after.
- occasional pain with sex before or after period.
- infertility, BUT I have my 2 beautiful children and that is all I need. Besides, I am 44 now.
If you are interested in the natural route, it will require DILIGENCE, DISCIPLINE and TIME. If you take a few vitamins, change your diet and after a few months do not have any results, do not give up. First you need a program to follow specifically and the program may change depending on if you are having any results or not. A naturopathic Dr. can help greatly with this (see the natural treatment page) www.naturopathic.org
If you are choosing a naturopath, I highly suggest one that specializes in hormones or women's problems and also one you are very comfortable with. Make sure to call around, ask to speak to the Dr. personally and see how the tone is and how knowledgeable she/he seems. This is what I did, I did not want to have another bad experience and waste time, so I asked the secretary to have the Dr. call me. I was in a very bad mood when I spoke to the Dr., I was not feeling well and I figured this would be a good indicator of her personality and her compassion which is also very important besides knowledge. Also my first Drs. appt. was over 2 hours long and consisted of my entire life health history. This should give an overall health picture of the ENTIRE body, which should be treated-not just the pelvic area...
A list of my health problems: endo and hypoglycemia. What this Dr. found: Anemia, B12 deficiency, estrogen dominance, adrenal gland fatigue,insulin resistance, gluten/casein(dairy) intolerant and candida. Well that is enough to make anyone feel extremely Lousy!! Most all is overcome, but not cured. I do live symptom free the majority of the time.
Thank You for reading this & many Blessings sent to all of you!
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the Lord with all your Heart and rely not on your own understanding. In all ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.
Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!!