A librarian from Kimberley is the driving force behind a new group designed to offer support to women who suffer from a debilitating condition.
Wendy Walker, who works part-time at Hucknall Library on Market Place, has suffered from endometriosis for more than ten years with the condition having a major impact on her life.
Endometriosis is a chronic and debilitating condition that causes painful or heavy periods.
“I was in so much pain at times that I just couldn’t function,” said the mum of two.
“It has had a devastating impact and led to financial problems too as I was unable to work and my husband had to take time out to look after our children.”
It has taken Wendy several years to finally get a diagnosis for her condition which she says is typical for many sufferers.
“It wasn’t until I had a hysterectomy in July last year and they were able to do a biopsy that I finally got the diagnosis,” added Wendy.
“My doctor in the past kept putting my symptoms down to many other conditions which I was incorrectly treated for.”
There is no cure for endometriosis it is all about managing the symptoms.
“I was finally referred to a gynaecologist four years ago and it took three and a half years of investigations to realise what it was.
“I just felt like a bad mother because I couldn’t do things with my family and although my family, friends, colleagues and employer have been very supportive, they don’t have the empathy of sufferers.”
It was this need to talk to fellow women with the condition that led to Wendy setting up a self-help group.
She has also arranged a monthly reading and support group at Hucknall Library.
“It’s a chance for women to talk about their experiences,” she added. “It’s also about raising awareness of the condition and empowering women to seek further help and advice on how to navigate the NHS.”
Since Wendy’s condition has improved she is embarking on an adventure for the Endometriosis UK charity by climbing Snowdon as part of the Pink Pants Challenge.
“I just wanted to set myself a target to show how far I have come,” she said.
I” have a donation page for the Snowdon challenge. www.virginmoneygiving.com/wendywalkerendo