Until it wasn’t.
Until they weren’t. Again.
I had been off The Pill and ok for about a year or two afterward, but during this time I began to feel fatigued. Fatigue in itself is such a tricky term to quantify or measure, much like pain. But after a weight loss of 140 lbs, I knew this fatigue wasn’t normal, this was seemingly coming from nowhere. Workouts used to leave me feeling rejuvenated and refreshed and I would welcome muscle soreness. Now I could barely get through a workout, if at all, and could hardly lift my legs some days they felt so heavy. I dealt with this for a while and was so concerned and perplexed over what this could all possibly mean, that I hadn’t noticed my periods began getting progressively worse.
Like so many others, this appointment was unhelpful. My doctor ordered an ultrasound of my pelvis and when nothing out of the ordinary showed up, told me it’s likely I “just have a low pain tolerance” and gave me a prescription for 800 mg tablets of ibuprofen. I felt humiliated. Even the results of my ultrasound seemed indifferent, “Unremarkable pelvic ultrasound.” I was crushed; the whole reason for my visit was due to the fact that my uterus felt anything BUT unremarkable!
This went on for 3 more years with the number of “incidents” not only increasing in number but severity as well. It was not uncommon for me to be found either in my bed or in the bathroom on these 1st cycle days. The blood tests my doctors ordered always came back in normal ranges and my unremarkable ultrasounds certainly weren’t helping matters. The sad thing is, I probably would have continued dealing in this way had these incidents been consistent. I could learn to deal with the pain, I could plan ahead to use my PTO on cycle days, but I could not deal with the erratic way my incidents would just happen. There was no rhyme or reason and I couldn’t plan for them, so I reluctantly decided to go back in to try again and plead my case that something was not right.
By this time, I had a new family doctor who FINALLY said, “You know, I wonder if you don’t have endometriosis?” I certainly hadn’t heard of it and wasn’t until I got home and scoured the internet that I thought she might be on to something. She ordered another ultrasound and this time, I had a cyst and what appeared to be blood in the pelvis, so a referral was sent for me to see an OB-GYN. Dr. April Sherren, my angel. With her, there was no messing around. She was suspicious immediately of my symptoms and my misshapen uterus and wanted to schedule me for a laparoscopy. Her conviction and certainty of what was ailing me were almost overwhelming to the point that I legit had an anxiety attack while she was explaining what a laparoscopy was and endo’s effects on the body. I even tried to start convincing myself that it was probably nothing! Looking back, I know I was scared that she wasn’t going to find anything, that my questions wouldn’t be answered, and that I would have to start from square one all over again. I even asked for pictures from my surgery, in part because I’m a science nerd that loves anatomy and physiology (and who wouldn’t want or need cool color real-time photos of their uterus?!), but mainly because I think I wanted to prove to myself that it was really there.
In June 2017 at the age of 30 years old, I was formally diagnosed with endometriosis and, most likely, adenomyosis through laparoscopic surgery. The endometriosis was found in one spot behind my uterus and was removed by ablation. Since learning more about my disease, joining the Minnesota Endo Warriors an the online support group of the Minnesota Endometriosis Nook on Facebook I’ve learned that the gold-standard for treatment is excision surgery (where the tissue is fully removed) and that may need surgery again. I am thankful to Dr.
So the message I want to convey is not one of despair, but one of empowerment. There may not be an end game for endometriosis and it will be a process, but don’t give up, advocate! Advocate for yourself, for your health, for your friends, your family and don’t be silent! You are not weak, you are not whiners, and you are definitely not crazy. You, my pretties, are damn warriors – just like me.
— The Minnesota Endo Warriors are honored to help Meagan share her story and are committed to providing a place of community and comfort to those living with endometriosis and their loved ones. Meagan is proud to partner with the Minnesota Endo Warriors. If you would like to connect with her and continue to follow her story you can
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