Thursday 15 July 2010

Scared & Embarassed: Making a Breakthrough..

This post has been written as part of Josie's writing workshop. It has been a while since I last joined in and I have missed it. The prompt I choose this week was one word 'Running'. Here is how I have been running from a situation over the last few weeks...

It was about 6 weeks ago that I last went swimming in the pool at work. It was a Tuesday morning about 7am, my normal time and I was looking forward to gliding through the water (yeah right, more like lumping) and having 30 minutes of 'me' thinking time. I adore my time in the pool (when I get there, not when I have to get out of bed at 6.20am and everyone else is still asleep!) and this day was no different to any other. At first the water was easing my period pains and the calm swooshing of the water was clearing my mind. I happily chatted to God and thought about what my week ahead would entail. It had been a rough month for me, what with my miscarriage and I was enjoying this precious peaceful time.

About 40 minutes later it was time to get out and get lively, off to work I needed to go. I had to be there for 8.30am made up and looking presentable. I got out of the pool and walked to the changing room to collect my towel and toiletries and then onto the shower. At that point I looked down and I did not know whether to cry, scream, hide or just die with embarrassment. I am sure the blood drained from my face and I felt such shame. I slowly opened the door and looked around, was anyone else there? No, sneak out and look round the corner, 'oh my goodness'. There from the pool right to everywhere I had walked was a trail of blood, my blood. Day two of my period, I was using the highest absorbency tampon you can, only recently inserted and it has failed me. I assume I bled so hard due to the miscarriage the month before as I have always swam at this time of the month and been heavy for a few years now but this was beyond heavy. This looked like someone had been murdered.

I quickly took my towel and swished it around the floor directly by the shower so that no trail led to me. Closing the door I died as the shower washed away the cause of my shame and then realised it was one of those awful things that I was in the last shower and the red washed down 2 or 3 showers more before reaching the drain. I stayed in that shower for 40 minutes that morning in the hope that I might just disappear.

When I finally found the courage and strength inside to re-emerge I saw that the blood was still there. How could this be? The staff are normally fab and these are probably the cleanest showers I have ever seen. I sneaked into one of the toilets and again shut myself away from the world, hoping no-one would see the guilt written over my face - 'it was me, I am the unclean person!'. Consoling myself I wondered if people might think I had cut my foot and that was it but realistically with that amount of blood it would have to of been an amputation. I could hear the speculation of people in the changing rooms, what had happened, who was it, why had it not been cleared up?

As I sat there praying I heard the lady come in and clear it all up and in my heart I was profusely thanking her. Over an hour after leaving the pool I came out and got dressed. I did go to work, although the urge to go home and hide was very great. It was a busy time at work and I am not one who likes to let her colleagues down. So in I went and felt terrible all day. Each time I remembered what had happened I relieved that embarrassment.

I have been so scared to go swimming or do aqua ever since. Normally I go twice a week and I have missed it but the thought of THAT happening again was just too much. Having had a coil fitted about 3 weeks ago this means my bleeding has been unpredictable but pretty low considering my norm, so this morning I felt I had the courage to take those steps into the pool and I am so glad I did.

Have I overreacted to this incident in staying away for such a long time - maybe? but I think much of my reaction has been tainted by the miscarriage and my hidden sadness at losing my baby. As said before realistically I know that it was not ideal to have another baby but from my heart it would of been lovely to have one.

NOTE: (Mum, do not worry when you read this. Fundamentally I am fine, it was just good for me to get this out and let go)
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