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Now I Just Think of Myself as a Mermaid

Hello Everyone. My Name is Rebecca, but I prefer Becky. I guess my story starts when I was 12. I was going to the doctor for a routine checkup and to get updated on vaccinations. The doctor had been my doctor for a while. They did the usual checking of my weight and height. When the doctor got to the room, he looked worried and concerned. He told my mother and I that it had been a year and a half since he had last seen me, and that I had not grown even a single inch since then and had only gained a pound.

I never ate very much and got full easily. Plus, I wasn’t showing signs of puberty like I should be at my age. He said he thought it might be something, but he thought it most likely would not be it. He did a blood test and we were sent on our way.

A few days later, we got a call to come in to his office. It turns out, the doctor thought I might have had Turners syndrome, and he was right. The blood test confirmed it. He said he had never seen such a case as mild as mine.

From that moment on, everything changed. I was started on growth hormone right away.

Every night before I went to bed, one of my parents would give me a shot. After a few months of this, I started getting tired easily. I would sleep 10 to sometimes 12 hours a night and still wake up tired. I was also getting sick a lot. I would miss school a few times a month because I was sick or because of how tired I was.

When I was 18, I was taken off of the growth hormone because my growth plates had already

hardened. It was a bitter sweet moment. I will never forget looking myself in the mirror and being sad that I would never be any taller.

I used to not tell anyone that I had Turners syndrome; not even my friends. Now my friends know, and it has helped them to understand why I sometimes get tired easily. One friend was sweet and wanted to know more about what her friend was dealing with. She did research. When she saw that some babies with Turner syndrome are born with webbed feet, hands, or neck, she got excited. She said that we were mermaids! This made me laugh, but now all of my friends call me a mermaid.

Now I don't think of myself as having a medical condition, I just think of myself as being a mermaid. Some days are still hard. It does make me sad when people assume I am adopted because everyone else in my family is over 6 feet tall, and I am only 5'2. I am in my late 20's now, and it gets frustrating because people think I am still just a teenager and don’t treat me like the adult I am. I try not to let it make me sad because when I am in my 50's I will

still look young. I hope to read some of your stories and experiences.

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