Hello, I'm Gerry

My history with endometriosis has stretched over decades. I’ve suffered with symptoms since the age of 16 years. I was in my late teens, early 20s when I went to the GP as I was concerned about the constant bowel problems, pain and horrendous bleeding. This was some time ago and there wasn’t much information out there. Back then there was no access to the internet, so I hadn’t heard much about endometriosis. The ironic thing was my mum had suffered from it, but we did not really talk about it.

Despite complaining to the doctor of stomach pains and unsettling bowel habits, I was not officially diagnosed with severe endometriosis until I was 38 years old.

My Story

Before my diagnosis, I was told I had Fibromyalgia and IBS and basically told to just get on with it. But I persisted with seeking medical help and eventually I was referred to a gynaecologist who agreed to perform an exploratory laparoscopic surgery on me. Unfortunately during that surgery he discovered a lot more endometriosis and problems than he envisaged. The operation lasted a lot longer than expected and I had to have a second operation to stitch my insides properly back together as I was left with a hole in my stomach.

Since then, I have had five major surgical operations between 2008 and 2021. My pain escalated since having surgery of right sided rectovaginal endometriosis and right ovary and fallopian tube removal in 2014. On awakening from this surgery, I felt severe pain in the right side of my pelvis which radiated down the whole leg to my foot. I suffered from nerve damage. Pain has been a predominant symptom and has been constant ever since.

Finding a reputable endometriosis specialist is such an important part of this journey, I just went along with surgical plans without carrying out thorough research and thought. I fully trusted the consultants and went along with their advice without question. 

I now have abnormal movements of the right foot due to the pelvic nerve damage which has been diagnosed as foot dystonia which now causes intense spasms and pain. I was fitted with a Spinal Cord Stimulator in 2016 to help with my mobility and pain, but I still have to take a daily maximum dosage of strong pain medications and use a walking aid.

I am affected every day in every way. From walking to standing, sitting everything. I now rely on using a crutch when walking outside and I am in pain 24/7. I have had to give up driving, and I can no longer enjoy the yoga I used to love or go to the gym.

I underwent surgery again to remove endometriosis from my pelvic wall during the Coronavirus Pandemic in 2020. My only hope now is that it goes away and doesn’t grow back and cause me more pain.

I also had secondary infertility, stopping me from being able to give my son a sibling. Endometriosis is hard, I wish I could give more to my family.

Along my journey, I have met so many incredible and courageous people and dedicated medical professionals. I am also so very blessed and fortunate to have such patient and caring family and friends. Now, I too want to play my part and am determined to help raise awareness in any way I can.

The Endometriosis Foundation has been invaluable to me. The kindness, support and knowledge of the other members has been a tremendous help and I really don’t know where I would be without it.