In this episode, Zoha and Chris speak to Renée, a law student, who lives with endometriosis. They talk about the difficulties in getting a diagnosis of endometriosis and the varying impact that chronic pain can have on different days.
“I feel like you should ask for help if you need it, but I’m still learning how to do that.”
Renée candidly speaks about how her pride had prevented her from reaching out for support in the past and how she now understands that people who care do want to help. Whilst juggling university, a part-time job and advocating for endometriosis, Renée found comfort and support from her family and friends. Her platform on Instagram initially started with the intention of finding other people living with endometriosis but she has now built a community of many people with chronic pain.
“Being ill is a full-time job.”
On the topic of the fluctuating severity of her pain, Renée talks about how there can be some days when she accomplishes all her goals and more; and other days where she has no choice but to take a step back from her tasks. Her honesty regarding the reality of being someone living with chronic pain strikes a chord with many other people in similar situations.
“For every little thing that you do, be proud because it is really hard.”
Renée also mentions the importance in avoiding comparison with others, and judging yourself based on your own metrics. It is a testament to your character to be able to continue living your life whilst suffering with chronic pain; no small achievement should go unnoticed. Finally, and most importantly, Renée emphasises the importance of allowing yourself to be sad and feel emotions in the same way that you allow yourself to be happy.
You can find Renée on Instagram (@rayraydoesitt) for more insight into her life with chronic pain.