Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Wedding Night Story: Part Two

***DISCLAIMER: If you don't want to know personal things about myself and my husband, or read words like "tampon", "period" or "sex"........you should just click that handy little "X" right now.  I am past the point of embarrassment, but completely understand that others may not be comfortable with this story. :-)***

Start At The Beginning -- Read Part One HERE

This is where it gets difficult to write. Up until this point, my story could be anyone's story. A girl who waited to have sex 'til she's married. We were a nervous couple.

I don't remember very much from our honeymoon. If I'm being honest, I try to block a good portion of it out of my brain. We had fun, and we enjoyed the beautiful West Virginia mountains, the city of Charlottesville, and historical Williamsburg. But we did not consummate our marriage. 

We tried, and tried, and tried. And tried. I cried a lot. I spent a lot of time in the bathroom, praying and begging God to make me "more comfortable" and "less scared." I didn't feel afraid, but without bringing too much detail into an already detailed story - there was searing pain every time we tried. 

I thought that surely I was just inexperienced, and it would eventually happen. God bless my husband that first time he suggested that perhaps there was something else going on...something physically wrong. I probably yelled at him; I don't remember.

In any rational situation, I should have come home and gone to the doctor. But in my irrational, emotional state, I did what any girl would do: I came home and lied. Oh yeah - honeymoon was GREAT! We totally had sex! Better remember to take my pills - ha ha! 

We moved into our teeny, tiny one-room (you heard me. one. room.) apartment in Lanham, Maryland in July. We went to the D.C. Capitol Fourth and (tried) to make friends with other married couples in our building. It was hard. Deceit was hard. 

In August, I told my mother and my best friend what was going on. My mother insisted that I see a doctor, and my best friend hugged me while I cried. I told my extremely patient husband that he could talk to his friends about it, too, if he wanted. I don't know who all he talked to, but he came back with the idea that maybe I just needed to be a little tipsy. It seemed like a good idea (you know, to a couple who have been married three months and are grasping at straws!) - but didn't work. Searing pain.

I made an appointment in October with my mom's OB/GYN. In November, I saw her. I made my mother go with me. Like, in the exam room and everything. The gynecologist could hardly do her examination without me freaking out. My body had gotten so used to tensing for the pain that it was getting worse.

It was then that we finally got some answers. I was not too afraid, I was not too tense…it was not my fault at all. She told me I was born this way, and would need a procedure called a hymenectomy to remove the muscle that was preventing sexual intercourse. She told us there was a hole the size of a pin-prick. This was why I had unusually long and painful periods (9+ days), and also why I could never use a tampon (though I had admittedly not tried many times). Unfortunately, the surgery could not be scheduled until February, 2010.

Although I was thankful for a diagnosis, the weight of not being intimate with my husband did not dissipate. I was still very secretive, telling only the people I had to tell. This probably made me seem unapproachable and depressed. I was. I was petrified that people would laugh at me for not knowing this sooner, or for not going to the doctor until now. Through all of this, Patrick was loving, patient, and kind. He would spend hours playing Uno or watching movies with me, never once complaining about the situation that we were in, and in return, he had to listen to me sobbing over something I could not change.

It was during this time that I realized a part of my emotional instability was probably coming from the birth control pills that I still religiously took. I think it was to maintain a sense of normalcy. Regardless, it was a waste of money and I laugh at myself for taking them! We discussed it, prayed over it, and decided, after some research,  we really weren't big fans of what it was simulating in my body to begin with.

I threw away the pills and that week, I regained some emotional clarity. I will never take birth control pills again. I don't say this as a judgment on those who do, but for myself, I don't like who I was when I was on them and I don't like what they were doing to my body.

In February, 2010, I had surgery. I was scared out of my mind. It wasn't even a major surgery; outpatient, and I could walk that night! I think part of my fear was from the lack of people who knew about it. I had no one to talk to outside of my immediate family, and even then, I didn't tell my sisters, sisters-in-law, or closer friends from school. Recovery was just a few weeks long, but I was under strict instructions not to attempt sexual intercourse for eight weeks. 

We planned a trip to Williamsburg for Spring Break. A second honeymoon. I was so excited (and nervous!). I got the "All Clear" from my OB/GYN just a week prior to the trip over the phone, as well as a prescription numbing cream, just in case. 

I'll skip the pleasantries and get straight to the point: It didn't work. I was in just as much pain, and now various extremities were also numb from the cream. Which, SIDE NOTE, who thought that was going to be a great idea?!?! 

My longsuffering husband ran out for two giant tubs of ice cream and we stayed up all night, eating ice cream and binge-watching 30 Rock and The Office. Bless him.

I called my doctor and explained what happened. She told me to wait it out, six more weeks, and then come in for an appointment, and if we were still having a problem, she would figure out what to do next.

Meanwhile, we moved back to Salisbury. Patrick's school (where we lived, worked, and attended) was having a financial crisis, and after dealing with many missed and late paychecks, we made the decision to eliminate a stressor in our lives and regroup back with our families. Patrick's parents graciously allowed us to rent a room from them while we got back on our feet. Much of our savings had gone towards my surgery and medical bills.

As if enough wasn't enough, I began to display symptoms of Lyme disease again in the time while we were living in Lanham. I was in denial about it for a while, but coupled with my other issues, my mother was attuned to my daily physical state and insisted that I go to the doctor. My best friend was getting married, I was starting a detox and antibiotic treatment, and we still couldn't have sex. It was a tough time for us.

I went back to the doctor at the end of August 2010. In case you've lost count, we'd been married 14 months by this point. I had begun to refer to myself as "The Super Virgin" in private.

To Be Continued...

1 comment:

  1. Vulvadynia...I too went through this. I too was diagnosed with Lyme Disease.