About The Following Blog

The following blog has been written purely for those wanting a first hand knowledge of what it is like to step into the dojo for the first time as a complete beginner as a Martial Artist. Through practising a Martial Art, you will gain many things such as self-confidence, self-respect and life-long and good friends. I hope this helps you to see into an amazing world of which you have never seen before and that I have had the privilege of belonging to and knowing.
Although I have not put my name or any name to this blog, it does deserve a dedication- a dedication to those who help people to train, who teach, reassure and most important of all- those who never give up, no matter how many times they hit the ground or a mental brick wall, with themselves or others. But above all- those who are ready to begin their own journey, it begins with one step….

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Chapter 67: And...Breathe and try not to scream with frustration

This post is in recognition of this Month (March 2013) being Endometriosis Awareness Month.
Around 1.5 million women in the UK alone have this condition, including me! So please do read the following, there is an Aikido link, I promise....

But before I get ahead of myself, I think I should at least try and explain what exactly endometriosis is.
I think the best way of explaining it is this. All us ladies of child-bearing age have a menstrual cycle. This, as I'm sure many husbands, fathers, boyfriends and partners will agree turns the most agreeable, sweet natured woman into a hormonal screaming banshee for about a week every month. As we all know, if a woman is not pregnant, the uterus (womb) lining breaks down and she bleeds. The cycle then starts again, with the womb lining being built up again in preparation for the next month. With endometriosis, the womb lining grows outside the womb, and is found around the uterus, its ligaments, tubes and ovaries. It can also spread to grow on the bladder and bowel and rarely the lungs. As its womb lining, every month when the bleeding occurs, the endometriosis bleeds too. As there is nowhere for the blood to go, it becomes trapped, causing pain. This blood then sticks to other organs in the pelvis causing further problems.

So onto the actual post, or reason why I'm posting anyway.

Grrrr...there is a saying 'never count your chickens before they are hatched'. How true this is.

Although I had been feeling alot better since the laporoscopy, the endometriosis pain had been creeping up on me again. I was so glad not to be in constant pain (the endometriosis I had was growing in a few places where there are alot of nerves) that I dismissed it at first, enjoying my first run of good health for a least 3 years. That was pretty stupid of me as it turns out. So I'm now back where I was a few months ago now.

Since my diagnosis, I'm finding that many people haven't actually heard of Endometriosis, and those who have, sadly are under the impression that it is 'just bad period pain'. The most annoying thing about endometriosis is that you have good days and bad days with it. Some days I have just too much pain and feel too tired and wiped out to do very much, and other days, I have too much energy. Its just the way it is. But I do wish that my 'energy days' could happen more on training days. I might have a shot at being able to train for my 1st Kyu.

I am not sure how many people there are who practise martial arts who have a chronic long term medical condition, but I am finding with Aikido at least, there is still training I can do, despite the pain and fatigue. Okay, so I can't do randori every session, but I can do basic foot and hand movements and still keep some flexibility by stretching to warm up and cool down. Oh, and breathing helps too with pain relief. I think that the adaptability of Aikido is one of my most favourite things about this art, I'm not sure that many other martial arts would be as quite so adaptable for people such as myself.

So at the minute, its very basic training for me. Little or no breakfalls, with emphasis on basic movement. This might drive some people crazy, but for me, its working. The most important thing is that by doing this, training slowly and going back to basic movement, means that I'm ironing out old and bad habits.

Thank you for reading. I know that the first half was perhaps too personal and hard to read. But its important that people know how debilitating this disease can be. And awareness starts with people being willing to talk and share experience.

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