For the past 5 years I have been living with endometriosis. Endometriosis is a disease in which tissue that normally lines the uterus grows outside the uterus, throughout the body on other internal organs, and causes adhesions and cysts to develop. It is incredibly painful and causes intense fatigue. (Here and here are some insightful articles about the challenges of living with this crappy disease).
On June 8th, I am having my 4th surgery to remove the adhesions and and as much endometrial tissue that they can access. There is a strong possibility my right ovary is too damaged to remain functional, so I might lose that as well (my left ovary was removed during my 2nd surgery).
After my 3rd surgery, last October, I felt like a brand new person! I became focused on having a healthy and active lifestyle. I had so much energy since endometriosis wasn't sucking the life out of me and I was no longer on narcotic painkillers 24 hours a day.
I was so grateful to be pain free, until the first week of May, when I found myself in the emergency room 3 times because I couldn't get the pain under control.
My doctor says this is one of the worst cases of endrometriosis he has ever seen. After this surgery I will be going on bed rest for approximately 3-4 weeks. My doctor is suggesting I start hormone therapy to induce menopause. I want to avoid this at all costs. Not only will it effect my physical health, but the drugs they use are known to have a drastic negative impact on patients mental health.
I've battled Depression and PTSD for most of my life and I am finally in a healthy, stable place. I've worked very hard to get where I am today and I am just not willing to compromise that progress.
Pathway to healing:
I want to do whatever it takes to avoid hormone therapy and menopause at the age of 34 so instead, I am going to fight this disease with other treatments that have proven to be successful in other cases, such as acupuncture and alternative medicine.
If I am not able to get my endrometriosis under control, I will have to have a full hysterectomy, forcing me into menopause and having to deal with long term impacts on other organs in my body and compromising my mental health.
My (humble!) request:
I am reaching out to my family and friends to help support my alternative medicine and my healing process. $1,500 will get me the acupuncture, medicine, and rest that I need to hopefully tackle this disease.
It is my hope that I can get my life back and and get back to doing the things that l love, like spending time with my family, going to shows and dancing with friends, spending time being active out in the world and working on great causes I care about.
Anything you can give would be amazing. I am so grateful for the support you've all so selflessly poured into my life!
- Jonathan Elliott
- Cheyenne Wester
- Anna Apperley-Dill
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