Body Talk is an ode for all bodies and diverse bodily experiences. Nobody and no body is alike. Even though mainstream media sometimes tells us the opposite. That’s why we want to start inspiring conversations with a reminder to foster a gentle relationship to our own body.
Say hi to Yasmin Medina. Yasmin is 23 years old, working in the fashion industry and breaking taboos around endometriosis. Endometriosis affects 1 out of 10 women - but a lack of research means people living with endometriosis can live in severe pain, unable to work or socialize.
When did you become aware that you were living with endometriosis?I became aware that I have endometriosis in December 2019. I have always had a lot of pain and migraines since I first got my period. I got a lot of cysts and abscesses emptied in my uterus in September 2019. After a few months the very excruciating pain came again and after countless hospital visits I finally got the right treatment with a binocular examination to see if my ovaries were possibly sick. Luckily they were not, but I was diagnosed with endometriosis. Which was nice to finally get a word to the pain I had felt for years.
Has endometriosis impacted your life? Mentally and physically?
Yes, most definitely. I would say that physically, I have a tendency to get bloated and just the feeling that my body is not quite right. Mentally I have learned my boundaries on what I can manage on a day to day basis. I do get very tired and I get a lot of headaches - so I make sure to really listen to what my body needs.
Where do you go to find out the latest research or findings you can recommend to others?
I read a lot of blogs and different Instagram pages that has some good facts about the illness. Mostly I talk to my family
— which has been very helpful as my mother is a midwife and my sister is a medical student. So they both have a knowledge and interest within the subject.
What kind of treatments have you found that are helpful for your condition?For me it has been very helpful to eat gluten-free as much as I can, and going to acupuncture. This doesn’t take all of my pain away but it helps stabilizing it. Endometriosis is very different from person to person so my treatment will not necessarily work for others. The illness is chronic and I therefore have to get the best out of my routines.
When things gets difficult - who or what do you reach for? Do you have any self care advice for others living with endometriosis?
The most difficult about it all, is that the pain will never go away overnight which can be quite frustrating when the pain is at it's worst. Then I reach out to my family and to my boyfriend. They are very supportive. I would say that everybody is different and therefore what works for me will not necessarily work for others as well. For me I make sure to get a lot of rest and taking time for my body to develop the pain. I love going to acupuncture - this gives me balance in my body. I also love to use a heating pad when I am sleeping on my stomach. And I also get angry sometimes which is needed when you feel helpless.
Is there anything about the body in general that you would like to be more accepted in society?
I feel like over the past years the womans body has been more accepted. Which is amazing. But I would say that a woman’s period will always be a taboo subject for both men and women and that is something that should be a more open subject — because it is natural!
If you were to write an ode to your 15 year old body - how would it sound?
Take it slow and listen to what your body needs.
What’s the best advice you ever got from your mom?
There's a lot, but in terms of endometriosis the best advice from my mom is to remember to breathe down to my stomach. Which is something that I'm still working on, as I have a fear of feeling pain as I have experienced previously.