In the second part of our inter­view, Lea tells us how liv­ing with endo­met­ri­osis changes everything and what helps her in her every­day life. You can read the first part of the inter­view with Lea here 

How do you feel about liv­ing with endometriosis? 

I have come to terms with my endo­met­ri­osis. It is a part of me that will accom­pany me for a very long time. That’s why I can’t fight against it forever and have accep­ted it as it is. She is just my silent com­pan­ion who gets loud from time to time and brings me to my knees. But that’s ok for me, I can handle it

How does endo­met­ri­osis affect your every­day life? 

In the begin­ning endo­met­ri­osis affected my every­day life a lot. I thought about it all the time and had a hard time push­ing it away. In the mean­time, how­ever, I try to focus on the here and now and spec­u­late less about future con­tin­gen­cies that may never hap­pen. That helps me a lot! Of course, this is often dif­fi­cult due to the every­day pain and prob­lems, but I have now found quite good ways to focus on some­thing else.

Endo­met­ri­osis often lim­its activ­it­ies, but I, or rather we, have come to terms with that and I am no longer annoyed when it throws a span­ner in the works. In the end, I didn’t choose all this and I can’t change much about it. But I can influ­ence how I deal with it and whether I let it drag me down – and I try to stay pos­it­ive as much as pos­sible, no mat­ter what happens.

Are there any daily habits that help you live with endo­met­ri­osis more comfortably?

My pain is chronic and there­fore almost daily. At first it was hard for me. Most of the time I did noth­ing, stayed on the sofa because I wasn’t feel­ing well. But that didn’t make it any bet­ter, in fact it some­times made it worse. That’s why I decided at some point that I can’t put my life on hold forever. There­fore, I returned to sports: horse­back rid­ing, going for walks, yoga. Espe­cially when I am in pain. Of course, it’s often hard for me to get on the horse and do jump­ing or dressage train­ing when everything hurts. There have been times when I just couldn’t do it. Often times it helps me to focus com­pletely on some­thing else. On bad days I do some­thing light, just go for a walk or do a relaxed yoga ses­sion.  On bet­ter days I like to do more.

Leben mit Endometriose, Endometriose, Bewegung bei Endometriose, Schmerzen bei Periode, Schmerzen durch Endometriose, Ernährung bei Endometriose, Alltag Endometriose, Hilfe bei Endometriose
Leben mit Endometriose, Endometriose, Bewegung bei Endometriose, Sport bei Endometriose,Schmerzen bei Periode, Schmerzen durch Endometriose, Ernährung bei Endometriose, Hilfe bei Endometriose

Photo Cred­its: Lea

Nutri­tion

I have always been keen on my diet, also before the dia­gnosis, any­way, so I hon­estly haven’t adjus­ted any­thing yet. I’ve been doing inter­mit­tent fast­ing for sev­eral years now, which means I fast for at least 16 hours every day. Most of the time, the food is then con­cen­trated on one very large but healthy meal in the even­ing. Lots of salad and veget­ables, some fish and cheese, hardly any meat and gen­er­ally almost no products con­tain­ing glu­ten. How­ever, I don’t let myself be deprived of sweets from time to time. Since my dia­gnosis, I have also con­sidered elim­in­at­ing or repla­cing dairy products, but I failed. Cof­fee with organic milk simply tastes much bet­ter to me than with almond/oat or rice milk. In addi­tion to that, I have also con­sidered a com­pletely anti-inflam­mat­ory diet, but so far I haven’t imple­men­ted it.

How has your life changed since your diagnosis?

Of course, liv­ing with endo­met­ri­osis has slowed down a lot of things. My stud­ies have been kind of on hold for a while because I just can’t really get on with it. Nev­er­the­less there are also pos­it­ive sides: I’ve become much more open – I think that’s also the biggest change. I never thought I would be able to talk so openly about my ill­ness, but it helps me and so many oth­ers. I get a lot in return, a lot of grat­it­ude and appre­ci­ation, some­times from com­plete strangers – that encour­ages me to do the right thing. Moreover I get an incred­ible amount of under­stand­ing from friends because I talk about it so openly. Every­one knows where they stand. That often makes things easier for me.

Through endo­met­ri­osis and the edu­ca­tional work that I am now try­ing to do, I have found some­thing that I believe in, that gives me mean­ing and is incred­ibly fun – and that is worth a lot.

What inspired you to cre­ate your blog?

When I first sus­pec­ted I had endo­met­ri­osis, I scoured the entire inter­net for inform­a­tion. Sci­entific art­icles, stud­ies, You­Tube chan­nels, blogs, Ins­tagram accounts – I prob­ably know them all. But still, there was usu­ally some­thing miss­ing for me: some­times a detailed descrip­tion or a per­sonal insight or a med­ical explan­a­tion. There­fore, I quickly had the thought that I would like to fill exactly this gap. That’s how my blog and then also my You­tube chan­nel came into being.

living with endometriosis, endometriosis treatment, acne, period pain, leakrssl, lea, Vulvani, endometriosis,
Endometriosis surgery, living with endometriosis, endometriosis treatment, acne, period pain, leakrssl, lea, Vulvani, endometriosis,

Photo Cred­its: Lea

Do you have any tips or ideas on how friends + fam­ily can help someone liv­ing with endometriosis?

I think the most import­ant thing I can say is: try to under­stand us and take us ser­i­ously! The worst thing is when someone dis­misses what you’re going through or doesn’t show under­stand­ing when we some­times can’t do what we’d like to do. Liv­ing with endo­met­ri­osis can be a huge bur­den – every­one deals with it dif­fer­ently. Try to be sens­it­ive to those affected, listen to what they have to say or even accept it if they don’t want to say any­thing about it. It is not easy, I know that myself. But it takes a lot of pres­sure off when you know that there is someone you can rely on, who takes you ser­i­ously and under­stands what is going on.

Leben mit Endometriose, Endometriose, Bewegung bei Endometriose, Schmerzen bei Periode, Schmerzen durch Endometriose, Ernährung bei Endometriose, Alltag Endometriose, Hilfe bei Endometriose

Photo Cred­its: Lea

Thank you Lea!

If you have ques­tions about endo­met­ri­osis or want to learn more about the dis­ease and liv­ing with endo­met­ri­osis, please check out Lea’s blog, Ins­tagram and You­Tube chan­nel

Britta Wiebe, period education, Vulvani
Britta 
Co-Founder Vul­vani | britta@vulvani.com | Web­site | + posts

Britta Wiebe is the co-founder of Vul­vani. She loves research­ing, writ­ing and design­ing new art­icles or innov­at­ive edu­ca­tional con­cepts about men­stru­ation all day long. When she is not trav­el­ling the world, she enjoys spend­ing time with her loved ones in the beau­ti­ful city of Ham­burg in Germany.