Kristen's Endo and Adeno Story
By Kristen Doyle
Kristen Doyle devotes her time between teaching the next generation and helping women with endometriosis through QENDO. Like many of us, Kristen's endometriosis journey hasn't been an easy one, here she shares her story: (Photo by Steph Sanders)
You know how whenever you hear about nasty diseases or conditions and you think, "that'll never happen to me"? Well that was me.
Why would I ever actually be sick? I ate well, exercised regularly, always followed every rule in the book and was a good person- why would it ever be me? I learnt fast that Endometriosis does not seem to discriminate. My endometrial cells did not care that I always used my manners or ate more vegetables than carbs today. I was female and that's all it needed.
1 in 10 females have Endometriosis. 1 in 10 mothers, sisters, daughters, wives and female friends. For a disease that is so common I was surprised it wasn't common knowledge.
This is my story.
In 2012 I was found to have stomach ulcers. They were due to the fact that I was taking way too many painkillers and drinking way too many energy drinks. It was the only way I knew to stay afloat.
That's when I finally came to terms with what I was feeling was not ok. I was in pain daily and no one could give me answers. I was defeated - a story that is all too familiar to Endo sufferers. I'd had enough of crying - I needed to be heard. I needed my answers.
My Endometriosis diagnosis was somewhat forced in 2016. I was 28. After seeing just about every specialist my GP could think of, I saw a gynaecologist. I was told I wouldn't have Endometriosis as the doctor laughed at me. Probably thought I been playing Dr Google. I was also told that surgery was too invasive and could be a wasted effort. I rang back a week later and said I WOULD be having a laparoscopy. Thank God I listened to my gut.
They found Endo but they also found that it had caused an adhesion from the back of my uterus to my stomach that had to be cut away.
I was 1 in 10.
Recovery was rough but there was 3 months were I felt better than I had ever. I cried most of those days because I was so relieved. I finally got what I deserved.
But after this wonderful honeymoon period with my new beau Endo, something wasn't right. Pain crept back in. Fatigue started to pull me back. Daily tasks seemed impossible.
I went back for some advice, 8 months after surgery. I should have known my gynae wouldn't think much of it. He kinda just shrugged it off. We had surgery to check it all out and put in a mirena. "It's all fine" - we thought.
Things got worse and fast.
I went to see another gynaecologist who is top rated in every online resource I could find- Graham Tronc (A proud supporter of QENDO and somewhat of a saviour to many of our members). I went back in for more surgery (2 in 4 months at this stage). He found Adenomyosis- what I always call the ugly step sister to Endo. We treated this with 2 mirenas for some time. I was upset to have another disease under my belt but so grateful that it was found.
Today, with the help of Dr Tronc and regular Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, and support from my partner Mitch and my family, this is the best I have ever felt.
My story is ever changing, evolving and growing. I have grown to accept this is my journey. It may be yours too. Be aware of the signs. Seek second opinions. Don't let anyone tell you to suffer.
You deserve better.
Be like the illness, don't discriminate- get heard and find your answers.
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