Then I’ll try to sleep, And I can’t tell anyone
I’m so scared they’ll get up and run
So I don’t speak, And oh I miss when we were younger, The days were so much funner
Weren’t they, Oh, I book a new appointment
It’s another disappointment, They’re all the same, same, same, When the doctor says I’m fine
One at morning, one at night, These pills will help you remember how to smile, But what does he know, Cause I feel so alone, And mom and dad both tell me I’m alright, Cause the doctor said you’re fine. . .”
As I’m laying in my bed listening to “The Doctor Said” by Chloe Adams, tears running down my cheek… all I could think about is the doctor who told me I was crazy and refused to do my laparoscopic surgery, for those who don’t know a laparoscopy is the diagnostic surgery for endometriosis.
This was my 167th ER visit, the 5th hospital & months of suffering in pain… but this visit was different, I didn’t get any needle pokes, pelvic exams, CT scans, ultrasounds, or false diagnoses. Instead, I got a genuine, caring doctor who took the time to review my extensive hospital records before ordering any unnecessary test. He did however, order something for my pain, asked if we could call my mom and speak with her together. This doctor was beyond amazing and if I could thank him personally, I would. On the phone, he apologized for all that we’d been through based on my history and suggested I speak to my Gynecologist about doing a laparoscopy to determine if endometriosis could be the cause of my pain. & the next morning, that’s exactly what I did. Til this day, almost 5 years later… I am beyond grateful to have been under his care that particular day.
After speaking with my gynecologist, she agreed that would be a good option for us. But… my mom thought it would be a good idea to talk to her gynecologist about possibly doing the procedure due to their trusting relationship and her prior experience with him. So, we scheduled an appointment to speak with him about my medical history/symptoms and to find out the steps we would need to take to complete the procedure.
The appointment day finally came, and after hours of waiting in the waiting room.. the nurse called my name. Like any other doctor visit.. we went inside, she asked about my medical history, took my vitals and I waited for the doctor to come in. He came in introduced himself and began to ask about my symptoms. But it was this particular question… “on a scale 1-10, on one of your worst days how would you rate your pain?” Thinking back to being curled up in a fetal position on the bathroom floor, in excruciating pain, unable to walk, the shooting pains, the narcotics, the pelvic exams & hospital visits… I replied, “10” & can you believe that man LAUGHED in my face, YES. THE “DOCTOR”, whose job is to treat and care for his patients .. LAUGHED IN MY FACE & replied, “I don’t think your pain is a 10, you know what a 10 feels like.. a 10 pain level is when they crucified Jesus, there’s no way your pain is a 10” & it was at that moment, I realized the world was a cruel place, & I no longer wanted to live in it. (Well… that was kind of dramatic..) but no really.. I felt humiliated & empty.. like how could a doctor say this to me, it was like a really big slap in the face and at 18, I honestly didn’t know how to respond, so I went silent. I didn’t speak for the remainder of the visit, I was sad, torn, heartbroken & anything else that describes someone who feels like SH*T.
The rest of the visit doesn’t even matter at this point.
Hearing those words caused tears to fill my eyes, a sharp pain in my chest, my body went numb, my mind went blank. & for a moment, I believed him. (“Maybe I was crazy”, “maybe this pain was just in my head”, “maybe…”) it was just all these maybe’s and no actual answers. After that visit, I was honestly skeptical about doing the surgery, I thought what if the results came back negative and I didn’t have endometriosis, everyone would think I’m crazy and this doctor would be right. But I knew deep inside, something was wrong & it wasn’t the usual UTI, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease or a ruptured cyst that every ER doctor tried diagnosing me with. It was DEEPER. I had have ENDOMETRIOSIS. I AM 1 in 10.
I wrote this post in hopes to continue to bring awareness to this invisible illness and to hopefully prevent this from happening to anyone else.
P.S. Don’t let anyone tell you, your pain is not real. No one knows your body like you do.
I’ve undergone 3 laparoscopic surgeries, found an amazing gynecologist, I have a 2 year old daughter, I attend the University of Florida, & the pain from my endometriosis has decreased tremendously thanks to medical marijuana – don’t get me wrong flare up days are by far the worse but, hospital visits rarely happen. I am beyond grateful for my journey and aspire to inspire others with my story.
I AM AN ENDOMETRIOSIS WARRIOR.