Bindi Irwin is opening up about the health problems she’s faced for the past decade.
On Tuesday, the Crikey! It’s The Irwins star revealed on Instagram that she was diagnosed with endometriosis, the reproductive condition in which uterine tissue grows outside of the uterus, causing cramping and chronic pain.
Sharing a photo of herself in a hospital bed, the 24-year-old admitted that she wasn’t sure if she wanted to discuss her health publicly, but ultimately felt a responsibility to share her story for other women who need help.
“For 10yrs I’ve struggled with insurmountable fatigue, pain & nausea. Trying to remain a positive person & hide the pain has been a very long road. These last 10yrs have included many tests, doctors visits, scans, etc,” Irwin wrote. “A doctor told me it was simply something you deal with as a woman & I gave up entirely, trying to function through the pain. I didn’t find answers until a friend @lesliemosier helped set me on a path of regaining my life. I decided to undergo surgery for endometriosis.”
“Going in for surgery was scary but I knew I couldn’t live like I was. Every part of my life was getting torn apart because of the pain,” she said. “To cut a long story short, they found 37 lesions, some very deep & difficult to remove, & a chocolate cyst. @seckinmd‘s first words to me when I was in recovery were, ‘How did you live with this much pain?’ Validation for years of pain is indescribable.”
Irwin then thanked her family and friends who had been on the journey with her for the past 10 years, encouraging her to find answers. She also praised the doctors and nurses who actually believed the pain she was in for so long.
“I’m on the road to recovery & the gratitude I feel is overwhelming,” she continued. “To those questioning the cancelled plans, unanswered messages & absence – I had been pouring every ounce of the energy I had left into our daughter & family.”
“Things may look fine on the outside looking in through the window of someone’s life, however, that is not always the case. Please be gentle & pause before asking me (or any woman) when we’ll be having more children. After all that my body has gone through, I feel tremendously grateful that we have our gorgeous daughter. She feels like our family’s miracle,” Irwin said of her 23-month-old daughter Grace Warrior, whom she shares with husband Chandler Powell.
“I’m aware of millions of women struggling with a similar story,” she ended the post. “There’s stigma around this awful disease. I’m sharing my story for anyone who reads this & is quietly dealing with pain & no answers. Let this be your validation that your pain is real & you deserve help. Keep searching for answers. www.endofound.org.”
Powell, 26, also shared a sweet message to his wife on his own Instagram account following her endometriosis diagnosis.
“You are my inspiration to be as strong as I can be in every aspect of life. Seeing how you pushed through the pain to take care of our family and continue our conservation work while being absolutely riddled with endometriosis is something that will inspire me forever,” he wrote alongside a photo of the couple. “The greatest gift of all is knowing that you’re out the other side of surgery totally free of endometriosis. I cannot wait to embark on this new chapter of life with you.”
“Thank you. For everything. I love you and Grace with all my heart,” Irwin commented under the post.
Irwin joins a list of celebrities who have talked openly about their experiences with endometriosis. Lena Dunham, Halsey, Julianne Hough, Amy Schumer and Padma Lakshmi have also shared their struggles in the past.
A lot of smiling for someone in “pain”…