The Adventure Continues!
13 August 2018 – Patient Stories
The adventure that accompanies a pain free life is finally being lived out by Christine — a vivacious young woman who has experienced pelvic pain since she was 12-years-old. Since finding Dr. McGuirk and undergoing dietary changes, surgery, and hormone suppressant therapy 5 years ago, reclaiming her youth as an engaging member of society has been restorative.
Christine and her husband, Herman, enjoyed Oregon as state number 10 on their quest to visit all 50 states. They enjoyed a hike and this was the highest point of the trail!
The Odyssey Toward Pain Free Living
To revisit her story briefly, Christine came in contact with the term endometriosis for the first time at 19, after visiting a myriad of physicians and specialists attempting to solve the mystery behind her increasing pain.
“I had zero idea what it was, I just thought, ‘Great, someone has a name for this. Give me medicine and I’ll be out the door and back to school!’ I was definitely more shaken when the GI [gastroenterologist] explained that it wasn’t that simple and [I had to] learn more about it.”
Christine was committed to rescuing her health from the disease that held her captive in the Spring of 2013, when she sought out Dr. Barbara McGuirk for a treatment plan. This consultation took place approximately 7 months after her initial laparoscopic procedure in 2012, when it proved to be unsuccessful. When recalling her first memories made at the Endometriosis & Pelvic Pain Center, she states,
“I felt like I was heard, which was my number one concern when I was on this journey. One of the things I appreciate about Dr. McGuirk, is that she listens to my concerns, is willing to have a conversation to figure out what’s wrong and what’s a good path forward, all while keeping in mind the rest of my life situations. I remember being put on one plan to ease the pain and when it didn’t work, I had said this wasn’t working and she immediately went to plan B. Fortunately, this plan has been keeping me pain free since!”
“One of the things I appreciate about Dr. McGuirk, is that she listens to my concerns, is willing to have a conversation to figure out what’s wrong and what’s a good path forward, all while keeping in mind the rest of my life situations.”
Charting a New Course
Since her laparoscopic procedure, hormone therapy regiment, and dietary shift to Whole 30 was started in November of 2013, this combination has proven to be positively impactful for Christine — even when comparing the swift recovery time, the ease of this operation brought relief to her body as well as her mind.
When asked about what her swashbuckling life looks like in 2018 and what she hopes to accomplish, Christine shared,
“I’m feeling great! I always have the time around Thanksgiving marked as my anniversary of the start of a pain free life! This year will be 5 years, a milestone anniversary, I’ve heard. Daily life, I’m still doing all of the stuff that seemed out of grasp before I came to RAD because of my pain — still married, just celebrated 3 years of marriage! I’m starting to build a career and can’t wait to see how far I’ll go! We also work with the teenagers at our church, who certainly keep our life interesting! Our most recent adventure, we knocked out states 9 and 10 out of our 50 states by 50 bucket list [Washington and Oregon]. I also knocked cage diving with sharks off of my bucket list! We also bought our first house together, and we recently got our first puppy (who is the biggest ball of energy!).”
“This year will be 5 years, a milestone anniversary, I’ve heard. Daily life, I’m still doing all of the stuff that seemed out of grasp before I came to RAD because of my pain.”
In an effort to catch up on the years she has missed out on, Christine plans to take scuba certification classes so that she can free-dive with sharks and other animals of the deep blue, in addition to training for the Dopey Challenge at Disney World which includes a 5k, 10k, and a full marathon all within a 4-day window of time.
Pearls of Wisdom
Observing her endometriosis journey from the other side of this new chapter, Christine’s advice to a younger version of herself and to others is,
“Don’t be afraid to say, ‘Ouch this hurts!’ — don’t stop saying it until someone listens, and keep looking until you find someone who listens. You are your best advocate; don’t be afraid to be a loud mouth when it comes to your health. A good doctor is going to listen to your concerns and have a conversation about how to move forward.”
“Don’t be afraid to say, ‘Ouch this hurts!’ — don’t stop saying it until someone listens, and keep looking until you find someone who listens.”
This is one of Christine’s favorite photos from one of her most recent adventures! Christine shared, “I bet Dr. McGuirk didn’t think giving me a new lease on life meant jumping into a shark tank!!”
Christine and husband Herman, enjoying a relaxing getaway to Cape May, NJ. “We also work with the teenagers at our church, who certainly keep our life interesting!”
Christine pictured in her “happy place” with penguins.”I’m still doing all of the stuff that seemed out of grasp before I came to RAD because of my pain.”
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