I was reading over some old posts on one of my favourite blogs, Adventures on a Dusken Path and I came across this post. And as I was reading it, I was having a “I hear ya” moment. I hate having a period; it is the worst time of my life each month. I have agonizing pain in both the abdominal and lower back region, I on occasion get severe pain in my right shoulder (which is from a sort of rare kind of endometriosis), not to mention the difficulty breathing, the chest pain, the occasional flu like symptoms (because, weirdly, endo is an autoimmune disease and when some one has a damaged immune system like me, it can make things difficult, especially during flu season) and the skull splitting migraines. I take, on average, every four hours, codeine and two ibuprofen and that only minimally dulls the pain. I become a functioning basket case for a week. Not to mention how it affects me every other day of the month, exercise is difficult because it causes pain, I find myself with shortness of breath, tired, fatigued and also have difficulty concentrating.
And for those who are of the mind to suggest having children might help, I have a pithy phrase of the cursing variety for you, but I’m too polite to write it. I had a gyno suggest to me when I was 18 to start having sex or have a child as this would help ease it. My Mum came with me to that appointment; she damn near tore the doctor’s head off. You see, my endo is hereditary, my mother had two children and the bulk of her eleven surgeries for endo were after she had children, so that “advice” is myth in my book. I’ve had the surgeries, the medications engineered for this (made me very ill every time). I’ve been on the pill since I was 16 in an attempt to regulate and control the pain – it regulated my periods. My last resort as suggested by another gyno was “medical menopause”. I read about the meds for that, it would be fine if I wanted to end up looking like some lumpy, hairy welted thing (the side effects of the drugs were horrendous). So I passed. But where is all this leading?
Like Dusken, I am mystified at the whole spiritual, get-in-touch with your inner goddess, rah rah menstruation thing that seems prevalent. I honestly don’t understand how suffering in agony for a week can be seen as some empowered feminine time? Seriously, you come near me when I’m in pain and the last thing I will be is empowered and feeling all feminine, I might be empowered to knock your head off, but that’s about it. I really don’t get it, I know I certainly don’t get heightened powers, probably too zonked out on painkillers but even when I’ve tried to go a little sans meds, the pain is rather overpowering so I still do not feel this whole ‘inner connectedness’. Mostly I feel like my insides are being ripped out by a blunt fish hook. (Lovely imagery right?). I can’t meditate on the loveliness of being feminine because I am too busy trying not to vomit or pass out from the pain (which I’ve also done several times).
In case it’s not clear, this week would be “that time” for me, so my crazy is coming out in a ranting way. I’m PMS-ing in hot weather which brings it to a whole other level of insanity. Mostly I am going to sit in front of the tv with a book eating copious amounts of junk food which I will occasionally pepper with fruit juice to keep my vitamin intake up. Yeah, yeah, some one who is studying Nutrition should know better but what the hell? If I’m going to suffer, it’ll be on my own terms.
Anyway rant over, but I want to say, if some one gives you a hard time because this time is difficult for you, ask them to go get you a fish hook……