Endometriosis and Fatigue

"I'm tired, too."
"We're all not getting any younger."
"You don´t sleep enough, that´s why ..."


It is sentences like these that I have been listening to many times.  I´m not 20 anymore. I know that. My old concert T-shirts, which meanwhile roll up on my muffin top, often make me painfully aware of that. You don't dance all night anymore, have some shots and sit fit at the class test the next morning. I'm not talking about being tired - I'm talking about exhaustion as a symptom of illness. (If you like it fancy, you can say fatigue. )

The Trick is to keep breathing

I did not "develop" this chronic exhaustion as I grew older. No, it was suddenly there, and that almost exactly since my first operation, since the time when endometriosis really hit me. This exhaustion is clearly linked to the disease. This feeling that every cell of the body lacks any energy, as if the body had been stretched into the vacuum device and sucked out. The feeling that you are tipping over any moment, that even breathing is "exhausting", as if breathing paralysis would occur, if you don't constantly "work" on your breathing. It is a state in which every little move is too much.

One of my Endosisters once said to me that in these moments she had to really get herself up to everyday tasks like hanging up the washing. She is only 25 ...  Another Endosister told me that she gets up at 7 o'clock in the morning, and at 9 o'clock she is already completely exhausted like after a 10 hour shift. I talked to her about our jobs and we both have the same impression: that we spend our complete energy to function in these hours. You really scrape it together. Before and after that, hardly anything is possible. Only the pure survival instinct makes you go to the supermarket for food like in a trance. Hobbies? Appointments? They become a torture. Afterwards you fall into an energy deficit that the rest is not even enough for Sudoku.


I just read an article that says:

Tiredness and exhaustion are often mentioned with endometriosis as a main stress factor, sometimes even more important than pain caused by endometriosis. (1)

System Failure

Far too often they make our psyche responsible for the exhaustion. The say: A chronic illness leads to depression and this leads to exhaustion. To me it feels as if my body and my immune system conctantly try to upload something but due to Endo it comes to upload errors.

Endometriosis rarely comes alone. In most cases you have ordered an all-in-package with it. For example,  I am becoming more and more sensitive to food. Glucose and histamine in particular are increasingly causing me trouble. During blood tests I am always found to have some deficiencies, mostly vitamin D, vitamin B and zinc. This alone makes you tired. I´m suffering from Migraines, Brain Fog, Neurodermitis, Allergies ...  More and more researchers suspect that Endometriosis is a systemic disease. My hope was that when age comes Endometriosis goes. But I´m under the impression that only the Endometriosis related pain went, but everything else gets much worse. The system error somehow persists.

If you have cancer and say that you are exhausted, everyone is immediately aware that you are talking about a kind of exhaustion that you cannot imagine as person in good health. Endometriosis is not cancer. And this is exactly what makes it so difficult for most people to understand - that this also is an exhaustion that a person in good health does not know.  Once I was in good health. Exhaustion hit me when I was 29, when my Endo exploded. This exhaustion is not normal and it has nothing to do with age or having a lot of work!

Envious of Sleeping Beauty

But how to measure exhaustion? How can it be certified? How can you make it clear to the doctors that you are mentally in a great mood, but your body wants to fall asleep for 100 years? How do you emphasize the seriousness of exhaustion, which hinders you in everyday life just as much as severe pain? How to state it in pension applications, applications for a level of disability, so that the clerk doesn't think: "Oh, they all write that!

I do not know. I am also just too exhausted to think about it any further.

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(1) PD Dr. med. Brigitte Leeners: Psychosomatische Aspekte bei Endometriose, Zürich 2011. Download unter: http://tellmed.ch/tellmed/Fachliteratur/medinfo_Journals/info_gynaekologie/info_gynaekologie_Nr_2_2011.php