Colin said to me, you dress like you’re always going to battle. And he’s sort of right. One battle that I’ve been dealing with for the last 19 years is a particular infection. And something changed after my brother’s wedding. When I shared my child abuse story, I got a lot of questions from women asking if I had trouble with intimacy. The answer is yes. Emotionally, it’s always a work in progress. Physically, it’s something that caused me years of pain. I would get a UTI every time after sex. I tried everything to prevent future infections but nothing worked. Except being on antibiotics. I was on antibiotics for 19 years (this sounds crazy but it’s true) and developed resistance to six major kinds. I saw a urologist, had countless medical exams, and they couldn’t find anything. Finally, I went to a pelvic floor therapist. On our first session, she went in and felt my pelvic floor. She said, my regular relaxed response is like someone having a fight-or-flight response. My pelvic floor was damaged and she needed to stabilize the extreme amount of tension. The pelvic floor therapy did work for a little bit, but it didn’t stop my UTIs. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
When I saw my parents and my relatives at my brother’s wedding, they didn’t look larger than life as before. And in that moment, my pelvic floor DROPPED. It’s hard for me to describe, but it felt like there was a physical release and separation between my rib cage, pelvic area, and legs. It was as though, I felt that I no longer needed to tap into my fight-or-flight response. After seeing my parents, I have NOT gotten a UTI. Being on antibiotics for 19 years, I’ve been antibiotics-free for the last three months.
I’m sharing this story, because when people think about trauma or sexual abuse survivors, they usually think about the mental and emotional pain, but not the physical manifestation of that trauma. It’s incredible how the human body works and how it holds trauma.
New York, New York