Physical Effects of Stress
The past couple of months I was blessed with pretty mild periods. Then this past week — BAM! Pain central. Enough for me to have to leave work early to curl in bed with my heating pad.
My period brought with it pure suffering filled with bouts of uterine spasms and waves of pain that made me weak and dizzy. The week prior to my period was painful too — aching hips and lower back and a familiar pain of a potential cyst on my right ovary. Ugh.
In review of my basal body temperature (BBT) chart from this past cycle, I believe the reason behind this pain is readily visible — See the pattern of the beautiful Rocky Mountains in my luteal phase? Lol.
I relate the fluctuations in my temperatures to my mindset the past couple of weeks. I’ve been quite stressed — yes usual story 🙂
This stress played out through my body, affecting my hormones — up, down, up, down…. Kind of like the weather here in Colorado during this same time — snow, sun, snow, snow, sun….
Fortunately, these past few weeks of stress and pain ends with lessons learned and today — pain removed, sunshine and a happy sigh.
I figure I should write these lessons down — so I remember… and perhaps you will find some usefulness too 🙂
Lesson One: Ask for Help
I am taking an online programming class and have been struggling with a piece of a project for a couple of weeks now. I’ve spent hours and hours trying to figure it out, re-reading the lessons, spending much of my “free time” on Google researching….
The class has a time period for completion, and the looming deadline has kept my stress accelerating.
There were days where I literally woke up and got to work immediately on this problem, sure each time that I’d be able to figure it out…. with no avail. I contacted the instructor multiple times asking for help and she offered little to no guidance. Argh. This issue was taking over my mind!
My poor husband had to lend his ear to my near constant complaining and frustration about this issue. “Why don’t you see if someone else at the school can help you?” He suggested.
I heeded his advice and contacted an advisor. After dealing with an instructor truly lacking in empathy for my stress and frustration around this unsolved issue, it felt good to talk to someone who really seemed like they cared.
He offered up some suggestions and extended the course for me for an additional three weeks. Thank goodness. This helped ease some stress and allowed time for rest from this issue 🙂
Lesson Learned — Ask for Help. And if you don’t find it where you expect it — keep looking till you find someone who wants to help.
Guiding Lesson: Do Good.
The pain that catapulted into my body over the first couple days of flow forced me to rest. I spent a couple of days watching movies in bed. One of which is one of my all time favorites — Good Will Hunting 🙂
The part that always chokes me up is Robin William’s message that he repeats over and over towards the end of the film — “It’s not your fault”. Bonus lesson here 🙂 And an important one for anyone holding on to old pain (that continues to cause new pain).
I also watched a couple of awesome, recommended documentaries — Vegucated and Happy.
In their own ways each of these films left me with messages on compassion — compassion for our fellow animals and the correlation between compassion and happiness 🙂
This message or lesson is that of general karmic reaction — do good and good will follow. Happiness follows when compassion is shared with others 🙂
Finding the Answer
I tried out the suggestions from my advisor but was still unable to solve my programming issue. After continual struggles, strong thoughts of self doubt and resolution to just quit (a decision my husband would not accept, Lol) I decided to post my problem in an online help forum.
I received a prompt response. Yay! I tried out different suggestions over the course of a couple of days with no success, but I felt better, finally having someone trying to help me.
A couple of nights ago, I received a response that included a snippet of the original code I posted, with comments outlining the errors that I had made, along with corrections. When I incorporated the changes — it worked!
I cannot express just how relieved I was! And how grateful I was for this guidance.
I was looking for help from my instructor because this was my most obvious source. I paid for this instruction — but the answer was not here. I continued to frustrate myself seeking help where I thought I should find it.
Instead it came from someone on the Internet gaining no monetary reward, only satisfaction of helping someone out. My answer came from someone sharing a little kindness 🙂
Seeking Peer Experience Over Paid Advisors
I can’t help but correlate this past stressful experience with that of my path to healing my endometriosis. As shown this past cycle, my stress correlates with my endometriosis pain — and a lot of times, this pain causes more stress, because… well it hurts, Lol.
When the pain gets bad we search for answers as to how to end it. We seek out answers from where we think we should find them. I sought out help from my instructor because that was the “obvious” person I thought I’d find the answer from.
Similarly with endo pain, we seek out answers from doctors — because that’s where the answer should be — right? I mean we pay them and all for their “expertise”.
I know that I never found the answer from my doctors as to how to end the pain, except to add pills and unnatural things into my already unbalanced body.
And I did not find the answer from my instructor — who repeatedly just told me to read the lesson, as though some magical answer would appear that I hadn’t already seen or tried.
The answer came from the Internet and from someone with similar knowledge and experience to help me out.
The answer to my endometriosis pain also came from the Internet — from blogs and support groups of fellow endo warriors — of those who’d failed to find answers from doctors and who started to incorporate natural changes to end the pain 🙂
On the Positive Side?
So my point here? The Internet is awesome 🙂 Seeking out connections with others is easier and with a little searching — it is a platform that shows that compassion is still alive 🙂
The support system I’ve found from other endo sisters online and in social media sites has really, really helped me to not feel so alone with this pain that no one around me will every truly understand.
I feel so much better today now that my lingering programming issue has been solved — with help from a stranger who gave me the feedback I was looking for — who helped because perhaps they’d been stuck in the past and someone else helped them out.
The lessons on compassion and “paying it forward” are true lessons learned from this experience. These acts precede true happiness, contentment and hopefully the release of future stresses.
With much love 🙂
I love your blog post Aubree. Even in a stressful situation you managed to find a positive twist to it. Very inspring! Thanks 🙂
Thank you Susie! I believe there is a positive in every situation – sometimes it takes a little work to find it, Lol.