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Apr. 18th, 2011

white spiral

deserving love.

I have a final exam tomorrow in Québec history. I'm stressed, I'm exhausted, and I want to go to bed. I can't. I have another 36 hours until all my exams are over... and I'm afraid that's going to be 36 hours sans sleep. Hear me grumble.

But I need a break. My brain is fried. As much as I love history... too much of something is just that - too much.

My boyfriend and I are still together. It's been just over 2 months, and it has been pretty rocky these past couple of weeks. My insane schedule with school and his work schedule haven't been matching up, I've been stressed and so I just want to stay inside my little shell, and he wants to come home and spend time with his girlfriend. I've been relatively selfish and have been neglecting him, which has caused us being close to breaking up several times now. I get to go home this week for a week and a half, which is great. I'll come back ready all refreshed and energized... and ready to start spring classes lol.

In one of our big it-looks-like-we're-going-to-break-up-fights, he said something to me. It hurt to hear, but it was true. And it made me think. He said that being with someone else who doesn't have endo, who isn't in school, etc. would be easier (taken out of context it sounds even worse, I know, but I'm not about to give too many details here... can you blame me?)

But then he said something else. He said that just because I have endo... doesn't mean I don't deserve to be loved. It doesn't mean that I shouldn't be given that chance. There are a few other things on that list that make me not the most ideal girlfriend (again, details I'm not about to give away here, but they are things that can be very difficult to deal with in a boyfriend/ girlfriend).

But he's right. In all honesty, I have been extremely lucky with my past relationships (serious ones, that is). The guys I was with were supportive, kind, caring, understanding, and patient. Of course it was extremely frustrating when sex was entirely off the table, and probably led to some resentment towards me.

It makes me wonder. How many relationships have failed because our boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands, wives, fuck friends, lovers, fiancés, whatever... just can't deal with the fact that we have endo? How many of them have walked away from us, saying that it's just too difficult, that they don't need to deal with it, and that they can find someone who doesn't have these issues? How many of them have walked away from us, and walked straight into the arms of a healthy person who can bing-bang no problem and never think twice about it, never worry about getting her period, never stress about being stressed because it causes more pain, never worry about doctor appointments or prescriptions?

I can't say I blame them, to be honest. If the situation was reversed, would I have the strength to stick by someone so sick all the time? I can say "yes" because: 1, it's in my nature to take care of someone, and 2, I have already lived through that. I know what it's like. I can sympathize, empathize with that. If anything, having endo has made me a more loving person. I know how I want to be taken care of, I know how much it means and has meant to me, so of course I'm going to do that for someone else.

But not everyone has that experience. Not everyone understands chronic pain because they just haven't lived it, haven't seen it, haven't experienced it in any shape or form. Is it their fault? No, absolutely not, and they can't be expected to understand it. They just can't, and it's not fair to expect them to understand. If they're willing to stick around, then they will learn to understand - and they'll learn because they want to.

It's the first time that I've been in a relationship where the topic of my endo came up as a possible reason to end a relationship. Of course, when I first thought about it I was enraged, I was pissed, I was hurt, I felt betrayed, and I just wanted to yell and kick and scream and throw a tantrum and cry at the top of my lungs, "I didn't fucking ask for this!!!"

And then I took a deep breath and listened to him. He's incredibly honest and I appreciate his honesty (at least I know how he thinks, which means I understand him better). Yes, it can hurt... but that's just the dynamic of the relationship we're creating, I'd say.

Anyway. Despite it all, he's still here. He's still here because he accepts everything about me - the good and the bad. Now that... maybe isn't love yet... but it's close.

But, what he said is true... and that's the point I'm trying to make here at the end of the day...
Just because we have endo... doesn't mean we don't deserve to be loved.


P.S. I should have noted: my boyfriend is a truck driver, which means he's only around on weekends - which are often cut in half - and usually just one or two nights a week on weekdays.

Mar. 7th, 2011

white spiral

making love.

The symptom that alarmed my doctor in 2003, to the idea that I probably had endometriosis, was pain during sex. I was used to the cramps each month (that had gone from a few days a month to a week... and would later to go 2 weeks, 3 weeks, then every day), but this new symptom really bothered her.

She was right. She saved my life.

If it had not been for her, I have little faith that another doctor would have found a diagnosis. In the research that I did a few years ago, I found so many statistics of how long women wait for a diagnosis, how many doctors they see. If I ever have a daughter, her first or middle name must be Anna, to honour her.

Sex was painful. For several years it was painful. It was painful before sex, during, and especially after. How awful is it to feel like you don't want to make love to the person that you are in love with. The guy I was with at the time when I was diagnosed was not particularly understanding. He was even less understanding when I began my first round of Lupron (some women call it Liquid Gold, I call it the Essence of Hell).

I'm not about to give a list of the people that I have been with, but I know when I'm in love with someone or not by how my body responds to them. They're connected. My heart and my body. I have managed to succeed in having painless sex, but only with the people that I have been in love with. Of course I have had times where it absolutely has been painful, too. But painless sex. The first time it happened, I cried. There is a difference between pain, not painful, and pleasure. Those of us that are plagued with dyspareunia know the difference.

So I wonder how much of my experience is typical, or if it's just me? I wonder how much of my mind weaves in on this heart-body connection. Is it a triangle, a mathematical equation... a positive relationship with each 3 factors = a positive outcome, whereas a positive relationship with only 2 factors = unbalanced result? Now that's a topic to study... too bad I didn't think about that when I wrote my thesis.

So those are my thoughts for now. It's a snow day here today, and the city buses have stopped running. Even if I wanted to go to school, I wouldn't be able to. It looks like at least a foot of snow has fallen in the last 12 hours. My roommate and I both woke up early, both of us having something due this morning that neither of us were prepared for - and then found out it was a snow day for both of us, and danced around the kitchen. I'd go back to bed, but days like this can also be taken advantage of to get caught up. What was I thinking.... 6 classes plus a weekly practicum...

Feb. 21st, 2011

white spiral

Babies.

I wanted to make a post about fertility and babies. I actually started this entry a few weeks ago, saved it and then completely forgot about it. I guess that's what happens when school consumes you...

For about the past year or so (longer, even) my mind has been on babies. My sister is having her first baby (a little boy) next month, my childhood best friend had her daughter last year, and there seemed to be a wave of pregnancies not long ago when all I saw on Facebook updates were that my friends were getting married and getting pregnant.

I know that my biological clock has been going off for awhile now.

I know of a young girl, she's 16 years old, and is about 5 months pregnant now. She has been telling people that she is not worried about having a baby, that she believes it will be easy, and she is hoping to have a girl so that she can dress her up. First of all, babies are not dolls. Secondly, I didn't think parenthood was supposed to be easy. When you're a parent, you are responsible for another human being's life - I didn't think that fell under the category of being "easy."

I know of another woman... she tried for years to get pregnant. She had to deal with the heartbreak of reading a negative pregnancy test every month, which in itself I can't imagine having to deal with. She finally got pregnant, gave birth, and her and her husband were happier than they'd ever been. A month later, they buried their daughter after she passed away from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

And lastly, a young woman that I got to know very well a few years ago... she is one of the strongest women I know, an endosister. She decided in her early twenties to make the heart-breaking decision to have a hysterectomy. She suffered from extreme pain from her endo and had gone through so many treatments, but nothing worked. She is a bright, sweet, intelligent, compassionate, and incredibly caring woman, and I know that she would be the most amazing mother. It's a fucking shame that she can't make a baby with love the same way people make babies in a drunken haze.

So the question I come to: who deserves to have children, and who doesn't? Is there even such a thing as deserving? One might say that young teens who are stupid enough to have sex without protection don't deserve the right to have children because they aren't mature enough (please note: these aren't my beliefs, more of just speculation, I guess)... but I just can't agree with this statement. My roommate, who is like a sister to me, had her son when she was 14. Her and her boyfriend (now her ex) planned their daughter a few years later. She is a wonderful mother. She doesn't have full custody, unfortunately. She is in university... she wants to have an education so that she can provide for her children. Who is to say that she doesn't deserve to have children?

This post is not a well-thought out one, it's more just simple ramblings... the idea of deserving to be a mother.

It's midterm time and I'm stressed. I have pain and I hate it. I hate how when I'm stressed, exhausted from staying up late studying, and hyped up on caffeine is when the pain really digs in. As if I didn't have enough to deal with already.

I met someone. He's really, really terrific. There's something about him that I can't put my finger on yet. I keep a wall up around my heart, and he is somehow managing to scale it. It's scary. What scares me is the idea of "what could be." I care about him, I'm insanely attracted to him, we talk and have great conversations (well... as best as I can, since we really only speak in French), and we're both sort of at the same stage in our lives, mentality-wise. The connection with this little anecdote to my post is that him and I talked about what we want in life.... marriage, children, work, etc. He wants children just as much as I do, and he wants them soon just like I do. I told him about my endo. He researched it. This guy that I just met took the initiative to go and look it up, learn what it was and what different things can help it. I was blown away... to say the least.

Anyway. Enough procrastination.

Jan. 31st, 2011

white spiral

I'm baaaaaack...!

I was given an unlimited supply of spoons 3 years ago, when I was blessed to have an outstanding gynecologist. He performed my second lap and removed all of my endo. All of it. Even though I had been on treatment for the three or four years before that, my endo had still managed to go from stage 1 to a late stage 2.

Over the past few weeks I have noticed twinges, pains, discomfort... symptoms that I know all too well, symptoms that I have tried to imagine would disappear. This is unfortunately not the case, and today I admitted to myself that I am certain that my endo is coming back.

My life has literally flipped upside down in the last few months. My three and a half year relationship and engagement ended, and I am now trying to reconnect with parts of me that... well, made me - me. My research, my writing, my angst, my activism, it has all sort of dissolved over the past few years. I want to get it back.

I am still trying to figure out how to fit in this complex social networking world. There are so many applications and programs now, it's unbelievable. There are so many ways we can connect with other people.

I have missed livejournal. I have missed the endometriosis community.

I needed to stop all of that because I needed to enjoy being pain-free. I had other complicated problems, but I realize how fortunate I was to have those few years. But I miss it. I want it back. I need it.

Not sure how I'll go about this. We'll have to see. It may be a week before I do another post, or it could be as long as a month. I'm back in university getting my second bachelor's degree, in secondary education, with a specialization in history, physical geography and environmental studies. I practice my second language every day with my roommate. I go to the gym. I'm a busy girl. But... this is at least a start.
white spiral

April 2011

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