Why I Started Hpv AwakeningIf I tell you I started this out of the goodness of my heart that would be a lie. HPV Awakening Inc. came to life as a suggestion by my mother to take a negative and turn it into a positive.
In October of last year I gave in and got into my first relationship with a guy who we will demote to initial Z. He was the first person I ever slept with or ever even saw naked. Due to a number of issues we broke up in January. I had my pap smear done in July only to find that it was abnormal, positive for C1N1 and I now needed a follow-up biopsy - Planned Parenthood is where I got my pap done paid for via a donation on my behalf due to lacking in funds and having no medical insurance.
I call him up to inform him, being the responsible human being that I am, and he kindly intern informs me that he "is sorry to hear that I have that..." due to his oh so not surprised manner I asked "Z. you mean to tell me that non of your ex-girlfriends have ever told you about this before me?" and again (insert sarcasm here) he kindly informed me "well they've have abnormal pap smears, cysts, and stuff but since it didn't directly impact me I didn't care." I hung-up. he had known that he was sick but it didn't impact him so what did it matter to him if it did impact me?
I emailed his ex-girlfriend that came after me and told her to get tested. She called me up as my number was displayed on facebook and informed me of their relationship history - she had also been a virgin; they broke-up after the about the same amount of time he and I did; but she had started suffering from vaginal bleeding during sex which according to the CDC is one of the few symptoms related to this illness, because in most cases people are not systematic. She also informed me that he had not called her to tell her he was a carrier after I had spoken to him.
I then tried taking this to the next level and called FIU, the school all three of us attend, I explained my situation a nurse in the medical center. She told me it wasn't a reportable illness and it wasn't that serious. When I asked why it wasn't a reportable disease if he knew he was sick and passing it around purposely she laughed. She said that 80% of the population carries one form of HPV or another so you would have to report everyone then.
I called the CDC the next day to see if this was true. And they confirmed it. Mind you there are only 2 strands of HPV linked as cancer causing strands and there are 2 types of vaccines on the market that can protect you from them. Had I known he was a carrier I could have saved myself all this woe and just gotten the shot. But it is not required by law for someone to give you a fair warning that they carry this illness and all you need is a shot to prevent you from getting the 2 HPV strands associated with certain cancers.
Depression hit me, and boy did it hit hard. Here I was 26 had never messed around with anyone before in anyway and the first person I choose to be with is knowingly sick and gives me HPV. What luck right? So my mom suggested a non-profit. "Take a negative and turn it into a positive. Make it so that other girls or people in general don't end up in your shoes." So here we are.
HPV Awakening Inc was created to awaken one person at a time to this illness. An illness that even by most in the medical field is seen and known as a "**** disease". I guess I missed that memo, I mean I was the virgin girl yet when my mom called my aunt who is and has been a nurse for over 20 years with questions. My aunt told my mother "Nancy, girls get that from having sex at too young an age or because they have had too many partners." Thank you oh dear sweet aunt... If 26 is too young an age than God help the average person in the USA and Eastern Europe who on average loose their virginity at 14. And if too many partners is 1 then everyone who has ever had sex please sign over your lives to the **** guild cause it seems one is too many.
I have spoken to many doctors from all over the world since I have gotten my pap results for a follow-up and the word promiscuous seem to come out of their mouths a lot. Funny I still haven't even been with anyone else since Z what does that make me? But at the same time I have met several people on my journey that have shared their stories many of which were not as lucky as I was to catch this on time, and have had full historectamies at a younger age than myself. Or whom are now going through chemo and/or radiation as treatment. I have also had the pleasure of meeting people like Muffy whom is with WSSA at FIU and David Block from Planned Parenthood who have worked with me to have my first panel about HPV at FIU where education on the matter is greatly needed.
I have my first fundraiser Dec 3 & 4, 2011 a yard sale that you can follow on www.facebook.com/hpvawakening for more info. I am lucky and greatful to where I see this going. Every new person I am able to meet and educate is one less person I pray will not be in my shoes or worse off. The purpose for the fundraiding is to stop this epidemic through education so we do not end up again with a once "gay disease" (AIDS) again.