Hello, my name is Mariamou, I am from Cameroon, and I am now 27 years old. When I was 20 my baby died in childbirth, because I had no doctor or midwife to help. After being in labour for several days I was also left incontinent. Three months later my husband also died.
I used to love being around people but then many people were cruel to me and said, “Go away. You smell bad”. I was a social outcast and I thought I would live the rest of my life sad and alone. For seven long years I wondered every day how I would go on.
But somehow I just could not give up. Every day I prayed to God asking Him to help me. I did not know that my incontinence was caused by what is called an obstetric fistula, that there are many other women that suffer the same medical condition, and that there is a surgery that can repair the fistula in most cases.
One day I heard on the radio about a ship that had come to my country to do these surgeries free of charge. I was almost too afraid to hope that I might be cured. The people on the ship were so nice to me. I had a shower, hot food and clean clothes every day, and I was with many other women with the same condition. I had not felt loved and cared for like this for a long, long time.
I was a little bit afraid, but my surgery went well, and during the weeks I was there recovering I started to feel whole again. I thank God for the miracle He did in my life, and I will always think of this place and be happy for as long as I live! They even gave me new clothes to take with me. It has been a long time since I felt like a young attractive woman who people want to be around!