Lena Dunham has spent considerable time and money — and tolerated a good deal of pain — inking herself up over the past few months. (Check her intricate new Rihanna-inspired underboob tattoo.) But it becomes clear that the effort is more than worth it for the actress when you consider what a profound sense of agency over her own body that the tattoos are giving her.
Dunham opened up about why she's been making so many visits to the tattoo parlor lately in a candid Instagram story this weekend, as People reports. "Been tatting myself up like crazy this month," the 31-year-0ld captioned a photo of her new upper thigh tattoo, a large rose (and the scene of Kewpies she got on her right hip recently). "I think it gives me a sense of control and ownership of a body that’s often beyond my control," she wrote on a closeup of the rose.
Anyone who's battled a chronic illness or followed Dunham's own struggle with endometriosis will understand exactly what the author is talking about. Dunham has been incredibly open about her fight against endometriosis, a condition in which the uterine lining grows outside of the uterus and on other organs, like the ovaries — and which can be extremely painful.
It makes a lot of sense that Dunham would find empowerment in creating art on her body, the workings of which she cannot control. While there are a multitude of treatments for people with endometriosis — including surgery to remove the tissue, physical therapy, birth control therapy, and a hysterectomy — there is no cure for the condition, and no way of ensuring that it will never come back.
The state of Dunham's health has been all over the map this year. In April, the Girls creator and star announced that she was "disease-free" following her fifth surgery for endometriosis, which separated her ovaries and her rectal wall. But after the 2017 Met Gala on May 1, Dunham was rushed to the ER for endometriosis. And in May, Dunham was forced to cancel her Lenny Letter tour, revealing that she was in "the greatest amount of physical pain" she'd ever experienced. "After being told I was endometriosis-free after my last procedure, more disease was found in deeper spots that required immediate surgery and now physical therapy," she wrote.
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