The week before last I got one of *those* calls at the office. The number on the caller ID was my GYN, who I’d spent some quality stirrup/awkward banter time with just a few weeks prior.
Nursie-poo says I need to come back, all the scary test results returned with a HALLELUJAH negative, but there weren’t enough cells for them to complete the scariest of all. She also rambled about my thyroid – which has behaved itself to the best of my knowledge since that radioactive iodine uptake over ten years ago – but I’d already checked out.
Let’s back up. What. The. F___. Not enough cells? For what, cloning me? I’m pretty awesome with my grey streak and sharp wit, but let’s not go overboard. How many do they need? And really, when you’re shoving a toilet brush up my hoo-hah so far I actually used the sweat sock covered stirrups to bear down, I’M CERTAIN you got more than your fair share of my fleshy bagel.
But yeah, okay, I’ll cut my over-earned vacation short to come for a bad boomerang visit because it has to be a certain time in my cycle and you’ve got a drunk frat boy working in your lab. Sounds like a hoot!
So I get there painfully early (as I arrive everywhere painfully early, a side effect of waiting on my perpetually tardy father during those dark days before cell phones) and sit reading and guzzling water in the lobby for half an hour next to a woman and her one month old who are chaperoned by every woman in her family over 30 because she clearly can’t be trusted to carry this precious cargo to a check-up on her own, or because they’re that bored. The latter is more likely since they were passing a cell phone around & yammering on in Spanish as the clock ticked like tar and I intermittently checked to see if their volume knob was somewhere I could reach.
When I couldn’t take it anymore – and by that I mean I figured it was close enough to my appointment time that I could check in without being judged – I went upstairs to find a continuation of my nightmare that will surely catapult me straight to hell for even considering documenting.
A creature I’d never fathomed was in the waiting room: a blind woman screwing with her cellphone that talked to her while babbling to no one in particular about how loud her phone is and how it doesn’t allow her privacy. Ohhhhhkaaaay. So for the next 15 minutes I endure her telling someone at the office how to sort files by type in Windows Explorer, and when it was finally, joyously over snapping her phone shut and muttering a hostile remark about mentoring.
Both impressed and annoyed (I had never contemplated a blind woman going for a pap smear and my imagination now has far too much fodder), I was not to be outdone.
When my name is finally called, I shift my mindset to a single focus: to be the first person to ever heed the request of the lab tech via her pleading post on the wall of the sterile loo – to write both my first and last name on the specimen cup. Oh, but wait. I plan to take the game to a whole new level and do so legibly.
Not to toot my own horn, but I accomplished my mission with execution that should earn me a gold medal, and don’t think for a second that I wasn’t tempted to take a picture. The only thing stopping me (with the exception of you seeing my legal name) was that in the time it takes to launch the camera on my nearly antique iPhone 3G, the nurse surely would have assumed I was taking an atomic poop. Which I wasn’t. In fact, I’m shamed I even wrote/typed that word. No one but the lab tech and I and I may ever know how skilled I am, and you, if you believe. Do you believe, Peter?
Off to delousing station #3, where I get to do that thing we all dread and push the red button on the wall and wait…eyeballing the tiny torture instrument on the counter and attempting a telepathic ceasefire with an inanimate object.
I swear it looks just like the little device I’d get from my orthodontist when I wore braces with bands to get the chunks of Wonderbread out of their homesteads between my brackets.
They look like this, and I bet my GYN pays more for them than I would at CVS.
Now, boys; I encourage you to imagine having that bit of modern medicine shoved up your pee hold and swept around a bit, because that makes you even with every woman reading this whose knees just clamped shut at the memory of her last visit and filled with dread for her next. Unless you’ve had children, in which case you’ve seen and heard worse and I’m sorry for that, but let’s be honest, that’s your own damn fault.
It’s all normal from there except for the part where she talks about my misbehaving thyroid while my ass hangs out the back of the threadbare sheet on my lap I attempted to pull around me. She asks if I’m tired. Sure I’m tired, but am I tired because I’m aging and had a 5 year bout where the most exercise I got was standing for 3 hours at a time during a Tweet-Up, or am I aging and tired because of the thyroid?
Either way, I’m going to take synthroid every day. With all that said, I’m writing this on my yellow tablet (see previous illustration) at my favorite haunt where I waddled in mentally willing that feeble cotton attempt to control the possible aftermath of my assault not to fall out the leg of my shorts (every woman reading this knows what I’m talking about, don’t act like you don’t).
What IS that? I mean I know what it was, but really – “here’s a pantyliner in case you bleed out from my having just scraped 10% of your lady bits off your cervix with a device we haven’t bothered improving on since the middle ages.”? It isn’t quite the antidote I’d go for after such an…interaction.
In fact, I motion that there should be a bar between the exam room and the checkout counter.
That beautiful nugget of innovation? Another of my under appreciated talents.