For the love of writing. My random thoughts, parenthood and style intrude on design, health, and cooking.

Part one of a long hard painful struggle.

Part one of a long hard painful struggle.

The last year I have been having an increasingly hard time coping with the pain of my periods. I have always had painful periods and thought that my aging, body post two-ceasarians was simply letting me down more than usual.

The truth will set you free.

These last six months have sometimes seen me having to take large doses of pills – within acceptable dosages, but way more than I was comfortable with. This was exacerbated by me also finding that my period pain was no longer only around the first days of my period. It started well before and continued well after and even started to manifest after my bowel movements for up to two weeks after my period.

Then the colonic bleeding started. At first I thought “oh hemorrhoids” as I have struggled since my pregnancies on and off with these. Then I realised the colonic blood was dark red and centered around my period, however it soon started to continue for a week (and then two) after my period ended. Eventually I had to be honest with myself and admit the “ignoring” it and hoping it would get better was not working. I had to be truthful with myself.

And then sex was painful.

This was one of the worst parts of the last year. Sex became increasingly painful. I began to loose interest as the experience was invariably moderately painful at best during and afterwards I was invariably in quite a bit of discomfort. This was one of the things that really drove me to consult a gyne and local endometriosis specialist recently. Huge bonus the gynecologist was a woman.

A year before I had visited a male gyne and his solution for my very heavy bleeding (dysmenorrhea) and increasingly painful periods – after a cursory check of my innards was “have a hysterectomy”. At 34 I was not willing to accept that this is the only solution.

A preliminary diagnosis.

I catalogued all my symptoms carefully. Made sure my period calendar was up to date. Girded my loins and went of to the gyne. She was amazing. She listened, asked questions and never dismissed anything I felt might be pertinent symptom-wise.

She did the usual scan and the Pap smear and then did a secondary more extensive scan. She discussed what she was seeing the whole way through. Showed me what she felt needed more investigation and was kind in how she handled me. I was not simply a slab of meat spread open for inspection. She talked me throughout the whole process and made sure I was as comfortable as possible.

Once reclothed and comfortable in her office chairs, she confirmed what I suspected at least as much as she could without further surgical inspection. She made her recommendations and they did not include hysterectomy! It included a hysteroscopy and a laparoscopy.

A way forward at last.

I was so relieved to have a gynecologist confirm my suspicions and be straightforward with me, while taking into consideration “me” as well. So I left her offices feeling hugely relieved and a way forward to discuss with the hubby.

Part two: Surgery and recovery to follow soon.

As ever I would love to hear your feedback and comments. Please email if you have any queries .org want the Cape Town-based gynecologist’s name.

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