The fierce Lena Dunham is fighting for women everywhere, one nude photo at a time.
The influencer celebrated the nine-month anniversary of her hysterectomy with gorgeous photos of her body.
Posted on Instagram, her revealing portraits exposed the rawness of her painful experience over the past few years in a way that has resonated with women everywhere.
“I’ve never celebrated the 9 month anniversary of anything and I realized last night why that number feels so funny- I won’t ever do it the way I planned to.
“My body is mostly healed and every day I find a new bruise on my heart, but today I offer myself gratitude: from the most pained place, I somehow knew to choose myself.”
Today is National Leathercraft Day, National Relaxation Day and National Lemon Merengue Pie Day. It’s also the 9 month anniversary of my hysterectomy. I’ve never celebrated the 9 month anniversary of anything and I realized last night why that number feels so funny- I won’t ever do it the way I planned to. My body is mostly healed and every day I find a new bruise on my heart, but today I offer myself gratitude: from the most pained place, I somehow knew to choose myself. The purest glint of who we are and know we can be is always available to us, calm and true at our center. My friend Paul named my uterus Judy, and when she was being uppity we called her out, hence the tattoo on my ribs, which hurt like fuck even through the pain meds: #RIPJudy. Today I give thanks for Judy, for her graceful exit and for this body, which is stronger than I’ve ever given it credit for. Happy Giving Birth To Myself Day.
The American actress was diagnosed with endometriosis, a condition where cells of endometrial-like tissue migrate outside of the uterus and attach to other places in the body.
These cells are structured to break down and bleed, but they cannot escape through a period if mislocated. This results in extreme pain that varies as hormone levels change, according to Endometriosis UK.
The condition affects one in ten women in the UK, and along with agonising pain, it often causes infertility.
After three hospitalisations within a year, Lena was unable to bear the terrible symptoms any further and decided to undergo a hysterectomy. She wrote about her life-changing experience in a moving letter.
“All along the way, a massive fear of mine was ‘being discovered,’ that someone would decide I wasn't strong enough for my work or my life because of what I dealt with physically and emotionally. But I am strong because of what I've dealt with.”
Now, the Girls star is reflecting on endometriosis in honour of her hysterectomy anniversary with a powerful statement.
“The purest glint of who we are and know we can be is always available to us, calm and true at our center,” she said in celebration of her health. Lena urged women to remember, no matter what we are going through, that we can always find ourselves through the pain and trauma. Somewhere buried under all that hardship is a strong and powerful woman capable of digging herself out.
The actress explained her friend named her uterus Judy, and Lena has a tattoo in tribute to her lost, physical symbol of womanhood that reads ‘RIP Judy’.
“Today I give thanks for Judy, for her graceful exit and for this body, which is stronger than I’ve ever given it credit for. Happy Giving Birth To Myself Day.”
But the courageous actress is clear to convey that a woman's femininity does not lie in her levels of estrogen or her functioning uterus. It is defined by her strength to carry on and fight for her true self to shine through whatever obstacles life throws her way.
Lena continues to be a bold advocate for women’s health and openly sharing about her chronic condition has helped raise awareness of endometriosis and it’s painful symptoms.
“I am no longer scared of my body,” she declared. “In fact, I listen to it when it speaks. I have no choice but to respect what it tells me, to respect the strength of its voice and the truth of my own.”