Written by Katherine Stanley
We are Walking the World 4 Endo this October to raise money and awareness for the 800 000 in Australia with Endometriosis.
It costs the Australian economy 9.6 billion dollars annually and the individual around $30 000 a year. It is painful and has no cure. The disease affects one in nine people assigned female at birth, making it as common as asthma or diabetes. However, unlike Asthma and Diabetes, it has received little funding and research.
In Australia, the average diagnosis delay for Endo is 6.4 years. This means that those with Endo spend 6.4 years in crippling pain and no answer to what is happening for them. Symptoms of Endometriosis include painful periods, abdominal and back pain, pain during other parts of the menstrual cycle and painful sex. Heavy and irregular menstrual bleeding and change in bowel habits as well as bloating and fatigue.
Research has shown that 92% of adolescent girls and young women have period pain. A third of them are missing work and school because of it, and most of them are not telling their teachers, bosses, or doctor. We are on a mission to spread the message that period pain that interferes with your life is not normal. If your periods are interfering with your life, please talk to a medical professional.
Endo Help foundation was set up in 2018 by Gillian Walker after her daughter collapsed post her hysterectomy. Gillian and her family found it hard to know where to get help and support and wondered how many other women and families were in the same position. Endo Help has been providing support for those with Endo and their families since.
I joined Endo Help in 2019 with a passion for changing the pelvic pain space.
I had a seventeen-year diagnosis delay where Endo and pain ripped through every part of my life. I missed many life events, had so many days off work, and often felt scared, alone and like maybe I had made it all up. I am working in this space in the hope that no one will ever feel like I did and that women will be seen, believed and heard.
One of the things I love the most about working for Endo Help Foundation is the process of creating new projects and bringing them to life. For example, I wanted to create a walk to spread awareness and create a community. My hope is that women will feel more supported knowing that a group of people walked to raise money and awareness for them. I also intentionally chose walking as it is a relatively safe form of exercise for chronic pain. You can pace yourself and walk within your ability and capacity. Research has also shown that walking is good for both your body and mind.
We are walking across October. You can choose whether you will walk as an individual or a team. You get to decide how you want to exercise and how far you would like to try and walk. And you get to decide how much money you will decide to raise.
Due to Covid, the walk is virtual. Though we will be socially distanced, we will remain connected. We have a free webinar with a panel of Endo experts on Sat, Oct 2nd at 3 pm and will have several Instagram lives throughout the month. We also encourage you to jump on social media and snap your shots as you #walktheworld4endo.
We are walking to end the stigma around menstruation and Endo. We are walking to say to all those with Endo, we SEE you, we BELIEVE you.
Please dust off your shoes to join us and raise awareness and money to research this debilitating disease. It is a great way to get active and change the lives of many.
–Katherine Stanley is our guest journo this month and an inspiring woman
who goes to the next level when she gets behind something she is passionate about.
We love having her at Ponderings and encourage everyone to get behind the Geelong
local to help her fuel the action helping so many women.
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