One day, without me knowing my mother was watching me, she came into my room and told me, "if you change your pad one more time, we are going to the emergency room." I was sort of scared, but not of my mother, but of the thought that we were going to the hospital because I knew my bleeding was not normal.
My mother later brought me pads for heavy flow, and for a few months I avoided going to the emergency room. My doctor prescribed me birth control and pain medication, but that went left and made my situation worst. The birth control caused me to have a bad allergic reaction, and I broke out all over; so goodbye birth control. I never wanted to try that again!
So now I was back to heavy menstrual flow, missing school days, family trips, and my emergency room trips increased. Inside a hospital, you expect understanding and empathy and maybe some sympathy, however we didn’t receive that all.
We received unpleasant comments such as, “As a girl, we bleed and have cramps which are normal." Some would also simply shrug their shoulders and say, "This is not an emergency!” No matter how much my mother would explain that this is day 10 or 11 that she has been heavily bleeding, or explain how I would miss numerous days from school, it was all no issue to the doctors or nurses! It appeared to them that we were crazy, or maybe I was craving attention.
We stopped the emergency room trips, and we ignored the school absence policy; this was to keep me sane. Heating pads, Ibuprofens, and herbal teas became my best friend. I missed several events and eventually, became anemic. I was about 21 when I went for a pelvic exam and finally, this doctor was the first doctor to tell me that I had Fibroids.
She stated that the fibroid was not very big, but can cause and had been causingissues for me. She advised me to have kids early, and later a hysterectomy, however I had already miscarried in silence and was not trying to let that happen again. I remember suffering at school and work. Still this day hearing, "excuse me, there is something on your pants," hurts my feelings.
I soon had a Myomectomy where I was surrounded by love from family, friends, co-workers, the doctor, and hospital staff. I had never experienced such a loving environment during this time. Complications did arise during my surgery, but God guided the surgeon’s hands and I was ok.
I have so many black shorts that I wear underneath my clothes daily from what was fear to now comfort. In 2021 I was finally told that my periods were not normal by a doctor. She looked at me and stated, "Carlee, you are NOT ALONE." She told me her story and held me as I cried. I was finally feeling like I mattered and I no longer felt that nobody cared for my pain and the pain I felt in my uterus.
During my 6-week post-op recovery period, the bills did not stop and neither did life. I was fortunate enough to have an understanding employer, church family, friends, and family to care about me and to help and make sure my needs were met.
But, what about the women who experience these problems, and their need for financial support? Who helps them?
THE GOAL FOR "GETTING HEARD," IS TO ALWAYS LET YOU KNOW WE WILL ALWAYS BE THERE FOR YOU!