BENEFITING: ENDOMETRIOSIS FOUNDATION OF AMERICA
ORGANIZER: ENDOMETRIOSIS FOUNDATION OF AMERICA
I was diagnosed with endometriosis on July 23, 2014. I was about to start college, I had just come back early from a gap year abroad, and instead of being on the high that life is at that age, I was recovering from surgery in my parents' home. I was afraid and confused, and I felt like after years of searching, the answer to my pain was that I had a disease that would inhibit me for the rest of my life. Aside from my friends and my family, what got me through was founding Winning & Grinning, an empowerment organization for women with endometriosis. I knew that I needed to provide a space for others and myself to prove that we could beat endometriosis every day- it would not ruin us. It would not ruin me. I began running and training for my first race, a triathlon, because exercise (swimming, biking and most of all running) gave me the ephemeral rush that I was not sick, and reminded me that I would not be sidelined because of my endometriosis. Since Winning & Grinning's founding I have competed in a triathlon and half marathon, fundraising as a team for the EFA both times.
This past January, I had surgery with a doctor at a renown hospital, who I trusted, and admired. When he told me post-surgery that I didn't in fact have endometriosis, I was disappointed. I was disappointed because I knew he wasn't right. I was ecstatic when my new surgeon across the country found endometrisois everywhere, just 2 months later. I am ecstatic every day knowing that I feel better, I am weightless, and I was right. I won this battle of being a women with endometriosis. Every day, I know I won, and it runs shivers down my spine. These same shivers run down my spine every time I run. When I run, I prove to myself, and others with endometrisois, that we can win. Crossing the finish line of the TCS marathon in November will be a sliver of the suffering I endured for 7 years, and the struggle endometriosis is to 1 in 10 women, but it will mark my defeat of endometriosis. I run to empower other women still in pain, still not being heard. I run to remind myself that the marathon of having endometriosis, that I succeed in every day, makes every other obstacle, even a full marathon, seem like nothing.
I can't wait to run with the EFA's name on my back, and it would mean the world to me if you donated anything that you can, to contribute to a world without endometriosis. To help women like me become a better version of themselves. Thank you in advance - your donations and your support motivates me every day!