Healthline.com Asked Me to Help!

 

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Screenshot from Healthline.com; 1/31/18

 

I’m so excited I’m going to BURST!

Earlier this month Healthline.coms staff asked if I would be interested in writing a few pieces for their site.  I’ve enjoyed the information they’ve had to offer in the past, and have been honored with a few of their blog awards, so I jumped at the chance to help!

They requested two things:

  1.  An Open Letter to their readers about my experience with Endometriosis, and any thoughts I wanted to share; and
  2. Tips & Tricks on handling painful sex that can sometimes accompany Endometriosis.

I jumped at the chance and began writing.

After I submitted the two pieces, I was then advised that Healthline.com would like to compensate me for my work.  Whua?!? You’re going to PAY me to write about Endometriosis and spreading awareness and helping support others?  …Now if you know me, you know I have this little unwritten moral code: if I make any funds dealing with Endometriosis awareness, fundraising, or the blog, I’m donating it straight to the Endometriosis Foundation of America.  I asked if they could just donate the money directly to the EFA for me; however, due to accounting reasons and stuff, they couldn’t.  So as soon as these funds hit my bank account *poof* they’ll be going straight to the EFA.

I will not, nor will I ever, profit from this damn disease.

BUT, I’m SO honored and excited and jazzed and thrilled and … excited! 😀 I wanted to share these two pieces with you.  If either of them resonates with you, please feel free to share with anyone and everyone.

The Open Letter:  Hey Girl, You Don’t Have to Live with Severe Period Pain

Painful Sex:  The Boss Babes’ Guide to Sex with Endometriosis

Thank you, Healthline staff, for this incredible opportunity for outreach and support.

If you read the articles and want to chime in your thoughts, I’d love to hear from you 🙂

Feel Good Fridays

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Photo by Nicki Varkevisser

Happy Friday!!! It’s the weekend! We made it through yet another week! WOOHOO!

I can’t get enough of today’s quote:

“This life is for loving, sharing, learning, smiling, caring, forgiving, laughing, hugging, helping, dancing, wondering, healing, and even more loving. I choose to live life this way.” 
― Steve Maraboli 

Apparently, I’ve used Steve’s quotes several times in the past for Feel Good Fridays (you can see them here)!  What can I say? I enjoy what he writes.

I hope you have an incredible weekend and live life to the fullest!

Love, Lisa

Blogs I’ve updated this week:

2018 Events Around the World:  added several events in Australia, Canada, South Africa, the UK, and the United States

Support Group – added our February 19, 2018, support group meeting

Dungeons & Dragons & Donuts – updated the story with our January 14, 2018, session

Turmeric & Black Pepper

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So, back in the day when I first received my diagnosis and went nuts researching how to best rid my body of inflammation, I started making a tea that contained ginger, honey, and lemon.  I later added turmeric.  And when I could, I used fresh ingredients.

Now I’m lazy and just sip on a mug of tea steeped from a tea bag.  I’ve tried several different ginger teas (some with turmeric, some without).  But my favorite right now is Trader Joe’s Organic Ginger Turmeric Herbal Tea.  I’ve also started putting a turmeric powder in my shakes in the morning.  It’s made by Gaia Herbs and it’s their Turmeric Boost Restore formula.  I blend it with a banana, some almond milk, and a pea protein powder mix.

But somewhere between making my homemade tea and finding TJ’s tea, someone told me that in order to allow my body to really soak in the benefits of turmeric I needed to incorporate black pepper. What?  Hence the hunt for the alleged uber anti-inflammatory tea (and other products) with ginger, turmeric, and black pepper.

I was tellin’ my Mum about it recently and she poked me to research and write about it.  Why ARE they supposed to be consumed together?  Why not? So, here I am…drinking my TJ’s tea and hitting the internet for answers!!  AND using goodsearch.com drops a one-cent donation to the Endometriosis Foundation of America each time I search a term! A double whammy!

I’m no nutritionist and don’t understand the chemical breakdowns of these types of things, so here’s my laymen understanding …

From what I can tell, an ingredient found in turmeric (called curcumin) is processed too quickly in our bodies and we don’t have a chance to absorb it well.  An ingredient found in black pepper (called piperine) slows down that process and allows the curcumin-y goodness to enter our bloodstream and work its magic.  There’s a 1998 study out there that compares the levels of curcumin in the bloodstream with and without black pepper.; showing a 2000% increase when consumed with black pepper (don’t ask me the ratios).  Do be careful, though: there are suggestions and concerns of piperine and certain drug interactions. So, as usual: talk to your doctor first.

BUT…please…feel free to read the articles in the Resources section below and form your own opinion!  I know nothing!!  But I do know I’ll continue my turmeric & black pepper combo routine.

 

Resources:

Healthcloud – (Article, Feb. 18, 2015) Do I Need to Take Pepper with Turmeric?

Healthy and Natural World – (Article) How to Optimize Turmeric Absorption for Super Boosted Benefits

Lucy Bee Blog – (Article, Sept. 22, 2016) Why We Should Be Eating Turmeric with Black Pepper

Just Vitamins – (Article, Sept. 25, 2017) Why Turmeric and Black Pepper Need to Be Taken Together

Pharmacy Times – (Article, July 28, 2017) Piperine Drug Interactions

Planta Medica – (Study, 1998) Influence of Piperine on the Pharmacokinetics of Curcumin in Animals and Human Volunteers

Turmeric for Health – (Article) 6 Amazing Health Benefits of Black Pepper and Turmeric

~ Again, I am a layman. I do not hold any college degrees, nor mastery of knowledge. Please take what I say with a grain of salt. If curious, do your own research 😉 Validate my writings. Or challenge them. And ALWAYS feel free to consult with your physician. Always. Yours ~ Lisa

 

 

 

Feel Good Fridays!

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It’s Friday (already?!?).  This week I am inspired by all of the uplifting and encouraging people in my life.

“Sometimes our light goes out, but is blown again into instant flame by an encounter with another human being.” 
― Albert Schweitzer

If you are feeling worn down, exhausted, defeated – try to find someone who can lift you up, ignite that spark, encourage you to keep on going.  The embers are there…they just need a little encouragement to burst back into flame.

Love, Lisa

Blogs I’ve Updated This Week:

2018 Endo Events – added a March 17, 2018, Endo Awareness Event in Delaware through The Yellow Cape

Share Your Story: Lish

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Lish was diagnosed with Endometriosis when she was 23.  Now, eleven years later, she shares her story with us from Ohio.  And she comes to you for help in answering some questions:

Lish’s Journey:   I was diagnosed with endometriosis in my 20s I went into the hospital with pain they thought it was my appendix’s so they went in and found out that I had stage 3 endometriosis. I had a cyst on my ovary and endometriosis all around my pelvic area.

I have had to have several surgeries due to having this. They ended up taking my left ovary out due to getting the same cyst again and again. I had a surgery and a week later it came back. So then that why they just went ahead and took the left ovary out.

I was scared not knowing if I would be able to have kids but I have a 7-year-old and a 1-year-old. So have faith don’t let the doc tell you otherwise ’cause that is what I was told I probably would not be able to.

Here lately I have had horrible back pain right before my period. I was just told that it’s more than likely from my endometriosis. I had my daughter a year ago so it was somewhat in remission. I am a stage 4 now. I came across this ’cause I am worried what I am going to have to face is a hysterectomy. The lower back pain is so debilitating I can barely get out of bed when it hits me. The pain shoots down like electric into my feet. I am trying to understand what spinal endometriosis is? Is it just the nerves that are being attacked by the endometriosis?

Words of Advice:  Don’t give up. People who don’t know what this does to your body will never understand unless you have gone through it. There are doctors out there who care to help.

If you wish to contact Lish, you can email her here.

My thoughts regarding spinal endometriosis:  It’s been said that it’s incredibly rare to develop Endometriosis of the spine.  I personally know of one friend who suffers from it.  And I’ve “met” a few other women online who also have a diagnosis of spinal endometriosis.  My laymen understanding is that the lesions may affect or impinge the nerves.  But, please talk to a physician for their understanding…

I want to send a special Thank You out to Lish for being brave enough to share her journey with us today!!   I wish you luck in all of your endeavors and seeking answers. .  ❤ Yours, Lisa.

downloadAnd if YOU would like to share your story, you can do so by clicking here.  The best part about this disease is the strong network of love and support from our fellow EndoSisters, and our friends and family, too.

Yours, Lisa.

Share Your Story: Shadoegirl19

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Shadoegirl19 was just 16 years old when she learned she had Endometriosis.  Now 48 and living in Michigan, she shares her story with us today…and uplifting encouragement.  Not only was she able to have three beautiful children prior to a hysterectomy, but she, unfortunately, was also diagnosed with inoperable Endometriosis of her spine.  However, she remains incredibly strong and supportive.

Shadoegirl19’s Journey:   At the age of 16 I lost my right ovary to Endometriosis. I had suffered from about 13 (the on set of my periods) until the day my ovary basically exploded from all the endometriomas & scarring. The surgeon had never seen anything like it (lucky me).

Back then (1980’s) girls my age didn’t have “female problems”. Every time I had pain prior to the ovary burst they told me & my parents everything from gastric issues to I was looking for attention.

After the true diagnosis I continued to have issues however, I was extremely blessed to be able to give birth to 3 healthy baby girls in between bouts. Throughout the years the problems continued to plague me and I had multiple procedures (ever heard of a Cauldocentisis?? OUCH), surgeries & treatments to try to stem the growth of the disease. I finally made the decision to have a hysterectomy when I was 30. They left my remaining ovary in to save me from having to take HRT or go into menopause so young.

Unfortunately that only lasted for 2 years before the cysts started again and I had to make the decision to have the ovary removed also. After that I went on to HRT and live awesomely pain free for about 12 years until I started to have problems with my hip & sciatica. Of course, I figured it was just my luck to end up with a bad hip after all the years of suffering with abdominal pain. It got really bad after I had a small car accident. Because the pain was so severe (radiating down my leg and causing numbness & weakness all the way to my toes) I had an MRI. When the doctors read it they realized I had a crushed disc and sent me off to a Surgeon. When I went to see him he asked me all the normal questions about my pain and symptoms, did an exam and went to look at the MRI once more.

He then came in and delivered some news I never expected….it wasn’t a crushed disc they were seeing, it was an Endometrial Mass between my spine & my sciatic nerve!! I was absolutely shocked! Worst part was that he advised surgery was not a viable option due to the proximity of the mass to my spine and how badly it was intertwined with the nerve bundle. He said he wouldn’t perform such a risky surgery because the chances of making it worse were far exceeding the chances of making it better.

So, after all these years & procedures, including my complete hysterectomy, the Endo wins again. Now I live with a pain patch and pain pills daily so I can actually walk and have some semblance of a normal life. I refuse to let this damn disease win! I have 3 awesome daughters & 2 beautiful grandchildren to spend time with and I won’t let some pain keep me from being happy! My only fear is that, since 4 of the 5 of them are girls, they will all suffer too. My daughters have each been diagnosed with PCOS and one of them confirmed Endometriosis so far. We knew to watch for it early so we’ve been treating it from early on and, obviously, it hasn’t affected my oldest since she is mom to the 2 grand babies. I pray that someday we can find a cure for this and stop the cycle of pain!

Words of Advice:  Don’t give up!! If you aren’t being heard by your doctor, find a new one! Look for someone who specializes in Endometriosis and get the treatment you deserve. This is a real issue and we shouldn’t be made to suffer for “being a girl”!

The Last Word: Thank you so much for giving us a sounding board and a place to offer support to each other! As women we need to lift each other up!!

If you wish to contact Shadoegirl19, you can email her here.

I want to send a special Thank You out to Shadoegirl19 for being brave enough to share her journey with us today!!  And I am so thankful that you spoke up about spinal endometriosis!  All I ever hear from skeptical readers is “it’s so rare, why do you scare people by posting about it?”  And you, my dear, are why.  There ARE women out there that suffer from spinal Endometriosis and they need to know they’re not alone or crazy. Thank you.  I am so grateful you were able to have three beautiful children and are a grandmother!!  I wish you luck in all of your endeavors.  I am glad that your daughter has such a wonderful EndoWarrior by her side.  ❤ Yours, Lisa.

downloadAnd if YOU would like to share your story, you can do so by clicking here.  The best part about this disease is the strong network of love and support from our fellow EndoSisters, and our friends and family, too.

Yours, Lisa.

The Blogger Recognition Award

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*squee* I love these things. 🙂

A fellow EndoSister and Blogger The Dissociated Press nominated me for this wonderful opportunity to tell you how the Bloomin’ Uterus blog began.

As you know, I have Endometriosis.  I was diagnosed back in June of 2014 with this illness I knew nothing about and could hardly pronounce.  My nurse helped me better understand Endometriosis by describing it as sort of a crabgrass that you cut and it can grow back again and again.

I felt disgusting on the inside.  Hideous.  Infiltrated by some alien.

So, I created the Bloomin’ Uterus and a little mantra to remind myself that I was none of those things:

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Then I delved into researching more about the illness.  Why had I not heard of this disease that affects one in 10 women?  What could be done? What caused it?  I obsessed.  And I needed somewhere to write down all of my findings.

I’ve never blogged before in my life.  But I grew up writing in my diaries. So, this was my online diary.  My thoughts and fears and pure opinion.  But that soon progressed into something bigger.

Rather than simply writing about my issues, I wanted to help spread the word about Endometriosis.  I wanted to connect with other women who had it. I wanted THEM to share their stories! AND I wanted to be able to share the books I’d collected and the things I’d learned.  So the blog morphed from an online diary into what it is today.

A place where people can ask me a question, I research the answers, and post my interpretation of what I’ve read.  Am I always right? No.  But that’s the beautiful part about having an illness that has no true black and white answers.

I’ve connected with so many incredible women.  And I’ve learned to embrace my illness; all of it.  Without it, I would never have become the strong woman that I am today.  And I will never stop…

I would like to nominate these fellow bloggers who I find incredibly inspiring in their own ways!   Tell us why you started YOUR blog!!

The Endo The World – Claire ❤ xoxoxo ❤

The Endo Zone – one of my all time favs, Marixsa

Yellow Endo Flower – a wonderful blog started by a woman in Kenya wanting to raise awareness and build a community of Warriors there.

Bloomin’ Uterus on Instagram!

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Well, it’s done!  One of our local EndoSisters from San Diego impressed upon me the importance and outreach Instagram could offer.  But, I myself an sooo not savvy when it comes to technology or these *new* *hip* sites…so, I’ve been resisting.

Luckily, this same Sister, Heidi, graciously offered to set up a Bloomin’ Uterus Instagram account and post on behalf of our group.

If you have an Instagram account and want to connect, please feel free to check out www.instagram.com/bloominuterus or @bloominuterus.

Thank you, Heidi, for all of your help!!!  You’re amazing.  And I *heart* you.