Bloom

“It is well” is at the tail end of things that I like to hear in times of turmoil. It is a phrase that I heard in the gusts of pain and wondered how anyone could conclude that what felt like a near death experience was something to talk about on a positive note.

10 years ago as I writhed in pain, it was not well. My body was not well, my mind was not well, and, I was not well. Everything hurt; passing urine, bowel movements, ovulating and menstruating were all accompanied by pain. I hated the journey, and I didn’t have good things to say about life. I was drowning on dry land. A few months later, I began my journey to get a diagnosis, which changed my life even more. Endometriosis is a silent, seemingly subtle thief, that lurks in the night at first, and then becomes brash as it matures and steals unashamedly in broad daylight. The pain that I had been battling over the years was all linked to the painful and heavy periods but I had no idea.

Pain is a very good teacher, thankfully we do not all have to attend its classes, especially if we have other people to teach us. My experience through pain and life change bore a desire to teach what I wish I knew as a teenage girl. One year ago, I decided to put the lessons into a book.

Bloom is here

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I am stoked that it is a reality, Bloom is a product of tears, surgeries, questions, countless medications, and a desire to be the change that I want to see.

Bloom is your practical guide for your period journey. It describes how a normal period should look and feel like, it explores the sanitary product options, healthy practices that every female should employ and teaches girls and women how to keep a period diary, the different factors that they should look out for and it includes a one year period diary.

Keeping a period diary over the last couple of years has revolutionized my life. I am now more self-aware, able to identify patterns in my cycle, and kinder to myself, there is a kindness that stems from understanding. I am able to hear my body whisper before it forces me to lay down and listen to the opera of its screams.

Bloom is Ksh 500/=, to purchase it in Nairobi please contact Rosemary via 0731224223. To purchase in Mombasa please contact me via 0746622833 or yellowendoflower@gmail.com.

When you look at a rose from the top, it is difficult to see the thorns beneath the blossomed petals. Sometimes the exterior appearances make people doubt the pain, but just like the sting of the thorn is very real so is the invisible pain that has somehow been branded as normal.

Through the years I have learned to bloom despite the thorns.

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Endo Prayers: I Need You

Dear Lord,

I need you.

There are so many things that I could say, but my words fail me. The weight of my heart is weighing me down. The words unspoken, sap my strength. You see the cries of my heart even before I mouth them. You know all things, you see all things, you are able to do ALL things.

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Lord, I ask you to help me feel you even in this state of being overwhelmed. As I feel like it’s me against the world: I stare at the pain, hospital bills, the societal expectations, my own expectations of myself and I feel weak. Unable to move.

You see the battle within, the fight of my life to try and stay afloat when I feel like a boulder in the deep, wallowing in the blues.

Wrap me in your arms. Remind me of your promises. Speak to me again.

Help those who feel like me, help them know that they are not alone.

In Jesus name, I pray and believe,

Amen

 

Energy Forecasting With Endometriosis

There are days I have the energy to change the world and other days that I want to put the world on pause and sleep. The latter is especially when Aunty Flo is in town. I usually have no motivation to do anything. I just want to sleep, but life, oh life must go on.

Fatigue is like a leech that sucks the life out of you. Sometimes I think that I am draining more than just blood; my mental energy is usually at an all-time low, and the desire to do things that I normally would is at zero.

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One day in December I woke up running on reserves and on that day a simple thing like wearing earrings felt like so much work. A few years ago, this would have seemed so strange and out of character for me, now it is (almost) a non-issue. After I had children, I stopped wearing small earrings, to reduce the items that they could choke on, I miss how light and pretty they were. Now, when I do wear earrings, I wear big ones, that tend to make me feel like I am lifting weights using my earlobes. God forbid they get stuck on something, or better still, my Ky yanks them.

As I am more self-aware and seeing the pattern in my life, I am learning to plan ahead and forecast my energy. There are days that I have energy coursing through my veins and those are the days that I write books and put things in order, and there are other days that I have to access my reserves to try and make it through the day. Especially when Auntie Flo is in town, she has a way of depleting my energy even before it comes to the surface.

My energy graph would be high when I am not on my period or close to my period and (almost) non-existent when I am on my period. During those days I only do what is absolutely necessary, the funnel I use to decide is pretty small, so doing my hair and wearing earrings seem like too much work.

For these days I plan ahead to have help, especially with the girls, I sleep, oh, I sleep, this is my current symptom of Endometriosis, a wave of sleep that will not go until I enter bed for a couple of hours. I (try to) eat well, so as to keep my energy up and avoid constipation, Auntie Flo and constipation make for a horrible duo. I do my hair a few days before to avoid walking around looking like I came in to close contact with high voltage and wear simple outfits that do not need matching or ironing, long live dresses. I think about my meal plan in advance, otherwise, we will eat the same thing every day, because the energy is limited to surviving. Anything that needs order and analytical skills is avoided during this time.

I am grateful for a good support system, my husband and daughters are so understanding when it comes to these couple of days. I desire to increase my energy levels so that is a work in progress, but good planning is definately working in my favor.

 

 

 

 

Post-Valentines Love

Aunty Flo ruined red for me, she was such a drama queen, who wanted to use my whole life as her runway as she strutted her stuff. Red for me was a reminder that she was coming into town, and that meant my life would change, I should have adjusted and adapted since her visit was periodical ( pun intended) but it still shook me every time. She was always EXTRA, robbing me subtly until she decided it was not worth hiding and did it in plain sight.

Then came Endo, Aunty Flo’s sidekick who refused to leave. She was like a leech, going in for blood; a permanent guest with terrible manners, hogging all that was mine and redefining me to myself. I was moody, understandably so, and irrational. My relationships suffered, and it was hard to give love when I felt like I was hemorrhaging the essence of who I was.

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The thing about living with pain is that sometimes you miss out on celebrating special days, because of pain, fatigue and/or other complications. When you are finally well enough to celebrate the after-party clean up has already been done.

This Valentines (week), we are taking time to celebrate the MVPs who are constant through the pain, those who are present, pillars of strength, voices of encouragement, bearers of hope even when they do not fully understand the pain that we undergo.

For those who help us feel like roses: soft, beautiful, vulnerable, dainty and precious, when in reality we feel like thorn bushes,  horrible to be around, offensive, not the best to look at and dull.

We celebrate you and we thank God for you. Thank you for being in our lives and loving us. Our journeys are a little easier because of you.

Endo Prayers: Missing Out On Opportunities

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Dear Lord,

My heart is heavy, burdened by the weight of all the opportunities that I have had to say ‘No’ to because of the pain and discomfort. Many times I am willing to take up great projects but my energy levels fail me. The pain overwhelms me. I fail myself.

Please help to be patient with myself, to do the things that I can in this season, and to find the silver lining in the midst of the storm. Grant me your contentment, joy, and peace to get through this.

In your time, please give me other opportunities to be there for those that I love, to do the things that I love and to be the person that I would have loved to be.

In Jesus name, I pray and believe,

Amen

Endo Prayer: When My Cycle is Erratic

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Dear Lord,

I can’t seem to understand my body. My period cycle is everything but predictable. My hormones are all over the place and this is affecting my life as a whole.

I’m struggling with feelings of anger, and I feel like I am losing control over my emotions and my body as well. When my periods come, the flow is irregular and the duration fluctuates from month to month.

Please help my hormone levels to become balanced. Help my body to have a predictable cycle. Please forgive me for the things that I have said and done as I have used this state as an excuse.

Reveal to me the things that I need to do and stop doing to help my hormone levels get back to normal. You knit me in my mother’s womb and I know that nothing is too difficult for you. Revert my hormones to the optimum levels.

In Jesus name, I pray and believe,

Amen

 

Endo Prayer: Struggling With Lifestyle Changes

 

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It’s February and I haven’t been able to sustain the lifestyle changes that I set out to make. I’m discouraged because I feel like I keep disappointing myself. I can give excuses but deep within I know that I have been my greatest barrier.

Lord, please help me to see myself through your eyes. To love every part of my being. And to see these changes as a good thing, not a punishment, so that I do them out of a place of love.

Give me divine wisdom to know what to do, help me find what will work for my body. Change my attitude as I do this.

Strengthen me and renew my resolve to be kinder to myself in all that I do, to eat well and exercise. Help me to be a good steward of the body that you have given me. Even in the moments of pain, help me to see that you are right there with me.

In Jesus name, I pray and believe,

Amen