Singer Monica Brown recently shared that she has been dealing with endometriosis and recently underwent surgery for not only that disorder, but to also take care of a few other serious reproductive health issues.

“May 30th I had an almost 8 hour surgery to remove my endometriosis (which I didn’t know I had until two weeks prior) , 2 cysts, fibroids & a hernia that all were making me very sick,” she wrote on Instagram. “I’ve known something was wrong but I also knew victory & better health would be near again!! Thank you Dr. Ceana Nezhat & Northside Hospital Staff.”

In a new interview with PEOPLE about it, Brown stated that she revealed her issues with the painful, chronic disorder in the hopes of helping other women see that they’re not alone.

“My reason for sharing is because we, as women, are built to be warriors and we will ignore something that seems so simple that can be so complex,” she told the publication. “Your uterine health is very important. I spoke up about it so people out there who are going through the same thing know that they’re not alone.”

For the 36-year-old, it wasn’t pelvic pain that sent her to her doctor and eventually gave her a heads up, but instead, it was being hospitalized more than once for “debilitating migraines.” Studies have found that migraines and endometriosis are comorbid disorders, meaning they are conditions that happen simultaneously but exist independently of one another. Realizing she was dealing with both taught Brown an important lesson about taking her health more seriously and using the resources available to her to do just that.

“One thing I’ve learned throughout this particular journey is that you have to listen to your body, and you have to listen to your doctor,” Brown said, “which means you have to know, respect and understand them; it’s a relationship that’s very important.”

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