The 24-year-old star shares the pain she’s been living in for the past decade.
If nothing else, Bindi Irwin is known for her cheery disposition and unshakeable smile. But the daughter of Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin has revealed this week the depths of the despair she’s felt after a drawn-out battle with endometriosis.
“I battled for a long time wondering if I should share this journey with you in such a public space,” the 24-year-old shared on Instagram, alongside an image of herself lying in a hospital bed – trademark smile still unwavering.
“It came down to the responsibility I feel to share my story for other women who need help.”
The young star, who is a mum to almost-one-year-old Grace Warrior, shared that she has been suffering with endometriosis for 10 years, and only recently began receiving treatment for the agonising condition that affects around 190 million women around the world.
“For 10yrs I’ve struggled with insurmountable fatigue, pain and nausea. Trying to remain a positive person and hide the pain has been a very long road. These last 10yrs have included many tests, doctors visits, scans, etc. A doctor told me it was simply something you deal with as a woman and I gave up entirely, trying to function through the pain.”
Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus, causing intense pain, and is often linked to fertility issues, and the young star went on to share a poignant reminder to all not to pry into women’s – or in fact, anyone’s – personal lives.
“Things may look fine on the outside looking in through the window of someone’s life, however, that is not always the case. Please be gentle and pause before asking me (or any woman) when we’ll be having more children. After all that my body has gone through, I feel tremendously grateful that we have our gorgeous daughter. She feels like our family’s miracle.”
It takes women eight years, on average, to be diagnosed with endometriosis, and Bindi dealt with the physical and emotional pain of the condition for even longer.
“Every part of my life was getting torn apart because of the pain,” she shared, adding that when she was finally able to go in for surgery, “they found 37 lesions, some very deep and difficult to remove, and a chocolate cyst. [Endometriosis excision specialist] @seckinmd’s first words to me when I was in recovery were, ‘How did you live with this much pain?’”
It’s an agony that one in nine Australian women know all too well, with telltale endo symptoms like chronic, debilitating pain both during menstruation and potentially ovulation, gastrointestinal issues, pain during intercourse and problems with fertility.
“I’m aware of millions of women struggling with a similar story,” Bindi closed her post. “There’s stigma around this awful disease. I’m sharing my story for anyone who reads this and is quietly dealing with pain and no answers. Let this be your validation that your pain is real and you deserve help. Keep searching for answers.”
Source @womenshealth.com.au: Read more at : womenalive.org