Ok, It’s time to talk about having 1 or more chronic condition and the impact on our emotions, specifically depression. I get it, we’ve all hit that low point where we feel overwhelmed, helpless and beyond hopeless. Then the isolation sets in. Our friends slowly disappear, our families either ignore or dispute our illnesses-
“ it’s all in your head” “ But you don’t look sick” stop being lazy….” ect you know the drill.
I’m not lecturing, I’m there myself. If my endo doesn’t have me laid up, my fibro does, if the fibro doesn’t have me laid up my bone damage does, and if it’s one of those especially fun days all three are screaming. And there I am, with this dark place creeping in because I have no help or control for what these are doing not just to my life but to each individual day. It’s scary. Here I am, I’m the strong one- I’m the one who can take on the world, but instead of heels I’m living in ragged bunny slippers. And all I can do is cry, or try my best not to. Then I ask for help.
I have a set support system, not just for my physical health, but that of my mental and emotional as well. It’s not a great secret, but the biggest tool in my arsenal is knowing I’m not alone. And neither are you.
“Blah blah blah counseling blah blah blah” Sound familiar? We hear it all the time from doctors fighting us on our DX, but seriously- wouldn’t it be great to have a professional help us with our deep seated anger and frustration? Our physical health sucks, and we’re managing it- it’s time to take care of our emotional and mental health as well. You know as much as I do how stress aggravates the Endo bitch. And we ALL know how the Endo Bitch and our voodoo who whos send our stress levels to the moon. Our own personal daily catch 22. We can survive it, but better yet there are tools to help us LIVE in spite of it. The key is being able too accept help, or demand it if needed. Some days making it out of the house is just way too much, we don't have the spoons for that. Good news! We live in the cyber age. Reach out to one or more online tools to help get you through that rough patch:
1. Support groups Online.
The best thing about social networks is we can now reach to others who are in exacly the same place we are. Maybe not location wise, but there are an estimated 176 million world wide with Endometriosis. 3 out of 5 of those 176 million have sisters conditions : IC, Adenomyosis, Pelvic Floor Dysfunction, Fibromyalgia, Lupus.... the list goes on. You're not alone. In anything ;) So you're online searching group names and hoping when you click " join" that you land in a positive and strong place. Interview groups like you would your medical team. If you want positivety look for positivety. What you will likely find is a lot of " poor poor me" and " mine is worse than yours because" or the infamous " my treatment is the only one that should be considered and you're wrong if you don't". don't get me wrong, we can't always personally be in a good positive place- but for goddess sake why would you want to be sucked into wallowing in it? Misery isn't healthy ;) Look for small populated online groups with good moderation. No drama allowed andplenty of spoons to share. If you need help finding one contact
Endometriosis Awareness Campaign We'd be happy to help with your search.
2. Mental Health outreach.
Cyber age + grass roots organizations + medical proffessionals online = a chance to heal your heart.
I know I know, you hear "mental health" and it automatically translates to the dreaded " it's all in your head". Well guess what? It's NOT, but mental and emotional health is as necessary as our physical health. You can't have one without the other two. Package deal. My favorite resources are pages on Facebook simply because I can store the links and get in contact with an actual person.
these are two of my best resources:
Grass Roots Initiative
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
The great thing about online resources such as these, they also have a wealth of knowledge of where to go and who to call in your areas. Not just the Americas. You're worth it, you're not helpless, and I can fight for your positivity until I'm blue in the face. But I need your help to help you. It does not make you weak to ask for help. Which brings up:
3. What do you do if you suddenly find yourself scared that you're going to get that email or phone call because another angel has fallen? This is a hard one, in our community how do you differentiate between the daily dull-drums and a friend ( cyber or otherwise) who is suicidal? Reach out and talk to your friend, or listen no matter how hard, and though you feel like you're betraying them- contact a loved one or an organization because your worried and scared. They'll be angry at you at first, feel betrayed at first, but it will be understood later on that you love them enough to get help. It's hard, I've done it, and been branded a bully and insensitive because of it. I can live with that as long as the one saying these things is also alive to do so. This is where your heart comes into play. And though I know they won't thank you, I do. I aim for no Endo Angel left in the dark, and by doing this you've just lit a candle to help them find their way back.
I know this blog post will hit quite a few people wrong, may trigger others, but this is what's in my heart as I read through news feeds and group posts and goddess help me the pain and loss coming through my awareness page's inbox. I'm tired of burying Endo Angels, I feel helpless when I can't reach one who is struggling. We're stronger together, and only as strong as our weakest sister. You are loved, you are valued and you are NOT alone.