Next in our Raw & Real Motherhood series is TMM’s CEO and Founder Sophia Moreno who shares her decade-long battle with endometriosis and talks diagnosis, symptoms, and guilt after conception.
My journey and diagnosis
After 12 years of suffering; pain, disappointment, heartache and two cancelled operations I finally had a life-changing operation five years ago. After a laparoscopy operation, tube and dye test I was officially diagnosed with endometriosis, blocked tubes, fused organs, adhesions and PCOS.
I was also told I wouldn’t be able to conceive naturally.
You may think I would have been disappointed with this news, but I was over the moon to have finally got some answers. After years of nobody listening, all the pain and no answers, you start to feel like you're going crazy.
I had already made lots of changes to my diet to help with the pain, especially when I was menstruating. But with an official diagnosis I could then investigate making more permanent changes in my diet. This, alongside regular acupuncture, exercise, and supplements has helped me massively. But it wasn’t solving it, and I still wasn’t getting pregnant.
My surgeon was a miracle worker - she removed the endo, lesions, chocolate cysts and managed to un-fuse my womb from my bladder! But I was told I'd need IVF to be in with a chance of conceiving. (It was that or go through the menopause which is not what you want to hear aged 25).
I always knew I wanted to be a mother and even if it wasn't the route I had envisioned, I was fully prepared to have IVF and we were grateful to be get some help.
You can see in the photos the morning of my LAP with a bit of bloating, vs the night coming home. I had no idea what the next part of my chapter was going to look like, but I was ready for it.
However, by some miracle I fell pregnant naturally a few weeks later. We found out I was pregnant the day before our IVF appointment. It was a shock and when my surgeon found out she couldn’t believe it. It all felt so surreal. We are truly lucky.
Even after the rainbow comes guilt
I now have three beautiful rainbow girlies and honestly, I could pinch myself every day. This, of course, comes with its own guilt. How have we been so blessed when there is still so many women sufferings or struggling to get that positive test?
My hope is that sharing might help hurry diagnosis and spread awareness and hope.
Don’t suffer in silence
Ladies... if you feel like something isn’t right, if there might be a problem - keep banging on. I didn’t know what endo was, or what the symptoms were and I often wonder if I did, maybe it wouldn't have taken so long to diagnose.
But most importantly to anyone struggling with infertility, please know that miracles do happen and there are AMAZING resources out there.
Don’t suffer in silence and don’t give up.
Where you can find out more information
I have a saved story highlight with endo facts and stats that might help you so feel free to check it out here or reach out to me. My DMs are always open.
Endo isn’t easy it’s something that we will battle with forever. But the more we talk about it. The more women we might be able to help.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition where a tissue similar to the lining of the uterus (called “the endometrium”) is found elsewhere in the body.
The condition causes this tissue to grow on the ovaries, the fallopian tubes, or the outer wall of the uterus. In rare cases, the cells grow in other parts of the body, such as the bladder, the intestines, or the lungs.
It induces a chronic inflammatory reaction that may result in scar tissue or cysts. The average time for a woman to be correctly diagnosed with endometriosis is an astounding 10 years.
This is largely due to the fact that pelvic pain and symptoms are often belittled or blamed on normal aspects of menstrual pain. In fact, 68% of women with endometriosis were initially misdiagnosed with another condition.*
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
The most common symptoms include*:
- Painful periods
- Chronic pelvic pain
- Abnormal bleeding
- Difficulty with getting pregnant
- Painful sexual intercourse
Symptoms vary between women. Pain intensity can be different from month to month and some women may feel pain constantly or only during their periods, while having sex, or when they go to the toilet. As shown in the infographic, endometriosis may also cause infertility in 30% to 50% of women affected.
Endometriosis affects one in 10 women and there are no known cures. Please help spread the word and share this with the women in your life. You never know, it could change someone’s life.
You can shop TMM CEO and Founder, Sophia’s edit here. And you can get 15% off everything using the code SOPHIA15 What are you waiting for Mamas?!
*Information shared is from qunomedical and can be found here