I used a sanitary napkin for the first time in my life.

I used a sanitary napkin, a panty liner, a Maxi-pad, today, for the first time in my life.

“Wait. What? You haven’t written to us in a month and this is what you decide to start the conversation with? Not that it’s terribly surprising news, you trying something new, but what the fuck, man?”

Just give me a minute to explain.

About a month ago, I came down with strep throat. That took me a good week to get over. After that, it was May and I was just trying to sleep well. Then, just over two weeks ago, my anal fissure started acting up. About ten days ago, my sister arrived for a visit that we’d been looking forward to for a while. Last week, my buddy committed suicide and I found out through Facebook because we weren’t really in close contact anymore. This morning, after a rather satisfying bowel movement, my ass started to bleed.

See, I just didn’t have the time to write. I could’ve made time but it would’ve been disingenuous.

Back to what I started with: my anal fissure. I first found out about this problem some ten years ago. It started innocently enough, just a little bit of blood when I shat. The pain and the itch got worse, so I saw a doctor. After his thorough examination, he determined that I wasn’t suffering from hemorrhoids but an anal fissure. It comes and goes, some days are suffered with a little discomfort, but this time it came and isn’t letting up.

I was all set to go to work, applying the Lidocaine ointment that the doctor prescribed, so as to alleviate some of the pain and help me get through my day, when I noticed that my finger was covered in blood. I was getting late, and I needed a solution.

When my sister was here, I asked her to leave some of her Maxi-pads with me (on my dad’s recommendation). She left me some for the light days and some for the heavy days. Today, I used one for the light days.

It was tricky work, trying to stick it to the right spot on the inside of one my good pairs of underwear. I took a guess and it panned out. I hardly noticed it throughout the day, but I knew it was there.

Never in my life had I ever given any consideration to the fact that I may one day need to use a panty liner. Searing pain originating at your asshole and exploding like a sea urchin with a tick through your body will make you think of interesting ways to find comfort. I never thought that I’d need to rest on ice cubes between my cheeks to fall asleep, either.

It’s been a busy month and I haven’t quite absorbed it all yet.

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