Endometriosis through the eyes of a warrior

Rocheda Bartley
Rocheda Bartley

March 23, 2020

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Ten years ago, when Roxene Nickle tried to get pregnant, she learnt that she had endometriosis. This is a condition that results from the growth of endometrial tissue (tissue that lines the uterus) outside of the uterus and causes pelvic pain, especially during menstruation. Since the diagnosis, the agonising condition has become part of the media practitioner’s daily life. But today, she’s speaking out – not for herself but for others who are silently suffering.

“To all my endo sisters, get help in order to have a normal life as [much as] you possibly can. Do not suffer in silence. You have the support of others; talk to someone. Seek treatment as every one of us reacts differently to treatment, whether medication or surgery,” she urged.

Roxene has had two laparoscopic surgeries that have eased the pain, but only for a while. Although she’s in pain every day, she powers through, especially with the assistance of the BASE foundation with Shauna Fuller-Clarke and her team.

“I don’t know about coping, but good or bad, depending on how you look at it, I have a good threshold for pain, so where others are crippled and cannot function, I am able to power through each day,” she said.

ENDO WARRIOR

The ‘endo warrior’ told Flair that pain isn’t the only trauma she battles because of endometriosis. Depression is a major emotional effect. The constant pain hinders her ability to be physical with her partner, slows down her bodily functions, and simply wears her out as she engages in a daily duel to try to function as normally as possible.

She understands that there is no magic fix for endometriosis and knows that others share her experiences. Her remedy is mental strength. It’s a crucial element that she wishes others would develop as it would help them to push themselves to do what they can to make life easier and be better with medication.

“That’s if your medication works. I don’t take medication. Nothing helps my pain. If I need to stop for a moment, I do that. You can do some form of exercise where possible, too,” she said.

Story by Rocheda Bartley

rocheda.bartley@gleanerjm.com

Photos: Contributed

Rocheda Bartley

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Rocheda Bartley

Whether it's through her written profiles or quick retorts, Rocheda Bartley has a way with words. Quiet, diligent and observant, she brings balance to the Flair team and never ceases to surprise.

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