So, I mentioned in a previous post that I had had a doctor’s appointment recently that was a little bit eventful. First of all, it was one of those annual appointments, so you already know how much I was looking forward to it! And I will try to tell the story without actually telling the story...I don't want anyone to find this blog by some weird google search!
Well, I arrived in the waiting room with my Beth Moore book in hand, quite looking forward to a short wait at least, since I was childless and would really enjoy just a few moments of uninterrupted reading time. I found myself, however, people watching more than reading for the most part. It’s just so funny (knowing what kind of doctor’s office you’re in) to try to guess who is there for what.
Obviously the ladies with the large, protruding bellies are the OB patients. You can tell the first-time mothers as they are, for the most part, young and pretty with their make-up and hair done to perfection and their maternity outfits are cute and stylish. They have looks of excited anticipation on their beautiful young faces….sigh. Then, there are those who obviously have other children at home. They come in sweats and t-shirts with their hair pulled back in ponytails, very little, if any, make-up, and their faces show that fatigue that every mother knows so well. Yet still, you can catch them lovingly rubbing their bellies and talking softly to the little prize within…contented sigh. Then there are the men…there were two of them. One, listening intently to the lady next to him, whom I would like to assume was his wife, but I am not that naïve, and the other…sitting alone…talking on his cell phone…in a room full of women…in a place he obviously didn’t belong. I wondered if he had arrived before his woman, or if he had arrived late and was forced to wait in the waiting room alone, or if maybe his woman just did not want him in there for the whole examination…or whatever… At any rate, he looked quite uncomfortable and understandably so.
And then there were the NON-OB patients (or so I assume). There was quite a wide-range of these. There were the blue-haired ladies who spoke REALLY! LOUDLY! about the exact nature of their visit today…ahem. Then there was the lady who appeared to be there looking for a date. She was dressed to the nines in an outfit that looked like she was leaving there and heading on over to Sixth Street for some partying…and if she found a handsome doctor to accompany her, so much the better! Finally, there was the one that I couldn’t quite figure out. I assume she was a lady…’cause she was in the..you know…ob-gyn office. But she was a VERY, VERY, BIG woman. Not fat, BIG. She was taller than my Prince Charming, and she probably had 50 pounds on him. Again, she was not fat. She looked very athletic. But she had a crew cut of sorts and wore men’s jeans with a polo-type shirt and work boots. I believe we have a women’s semi-pro football team in this town…perhaps she was a member of that team…a linebacker, no doubt.
But the fun did not stop in the waiting room, ladies...oh no it did not. . In fact the..."fun"... didn’t really begin until the nurse and the nurse-in-training took me back. First of all, they weighed me… (I was prepared, by the way, with my lightest weight jeans, a light summer top, and a pair of dress sandals that could quickly and easily be kicked off just before I had to step on that scale! And yes, my toenails were painted, my big toes were hair-free, and my feet were all nice and lotioned...LOL!) Now, the scale at this particular office has a note on it that states FOR ALL TO READ, “Scale is off. Add one-half pound to weight.” Now honestly, do they need to post that? Can’t they give us the small satisfaction of believing just for one brief moment that we weigh one-half pound less? Would it KILL them to let us have that one small nugget of hope?!?
I will state, for the record, that I was at the exact highest weight that I am allowed to be without being considered overweight. I was given a “weight-range” based on my height, age, bone-structure, etc. It was a 17 pound range. I was at the very. last. pound. on that range. On the brighter side, I had been hovering, during the past year, about 5-13 pounds ABOVE that last pound, so I was pleased. However, that end of the range is there to accommodate extra muscle mass in those people who actually, you know, workout and stuff. So, I really shouldn’t be quite so pleased since I have no extra or, you know, ANY muscle mass to speak of. It doesn’t really matter what a person weighs ladies, back fat and belly rolls are unattractive on ANY sized frame…believe me. Thank goodness for jeans, and various undergarments made with lycra…lots and lots of lycra...that’s all I have to say.
Now, after the weigh-in, we walked back to the room. Once in the room, both the nurse AND the nurse-in-training have to ask me a bazillion questions that I spent over 30 minutes answering the week before on their online questionnaire, so I wouldn’t have to do it at my appointment. And they both asked the same questions. I had to answer everything twice…well, three times if you count the online thingy. FINALLY, they get ready to leave, so the doctor can come and do the exam, and as they walk out, they mention that I need to put on the gown…opening to the front…great, just great. Except, I couldn’t find the gown…all I could find resembled more of an apron...a very thin apron...an apron you could practically see thru. Now, being on the higher end of my weight scale does not mean I am a large woman. I’m not. I’m on the smaller end of the size scale to tell you the truth, but that gown just barely went all the way around. (Now I should mention that I wasn’t seeing my regular doctor for this visit. I was seeing the Nurse Practitioner because my doctor was booked until May and I couldn’t get my prescription refilled without a visit, and I needed that refill.) So, maybe the poor Nurse Practitioners get stuck with the reject gowns…in this case a reject from the children’s ward, but a reject none-the-less. Fortunately, they did leave a sheet for me to cover up with… I just don’t think they expected it to be unfolded to it’s full length, and for me to be holding it all the way up under my chin!
So, finally the Nurse Practictioner comes in and guess what??? I had to answer all the questions...again! I could have sworn they wrote all that down in my chart 10 seconds ago! Where did that chart go??? One little interesting difference was that the Nurse Practictioner asked my age...very politely she said, "And let's see, you are 30...what?" as she was trying to do the math in her head based on my birthdate. I informed her that I was, in fact, 41 years old...information I would later wish I had kept to myself.
Well, we finished the usual exam...not pleasant...but not too painful either. THEN, I heard a sentence I never thought I'd hear as long as I never ended up in, you know, prison. We were going to do one more exam. A different type of exam. I very calmly mentioned that, well, this was...um...new. To which she replied, "Well, you've not been in your 40's before!" And THAT's when I wished I had kept my age to myself. If I hadn't just been reading in Lisa Whelchel's "Taking Care of the Me in Mommy" book about how important these exams are, I might have bolted then and there. However, armed with her encouragement that I needed to do this for my family, I stayed right there, in my see-thru apron, and prepared myself for the worst. It was actually quick, easy and a lot less uncomfortable than the regular exam...but still...ugh!
And as if THAT weren't enough, I was told I had to get a mammogram as well because now I'm, you know, in my 40's! Getting old stinks ladies, it really does!
Now, as unpleasant, though humorous, as all this was, I was given a clean bill of health with no signs of cancerous or pre-cancerous cells, and so I am happy and thankful. I haven't made that mammogram appointment yet, but I will...I promise...I will. I'm praying that Jesus comes back for His bride before my actual appointment, (can I get an AMEN?!?) but I will make the appointment. And now, here is your gentle reminder that Holy Mama's Club 17 is in two days! So, if you haven't just been in for your...um...annual exam...ahem...don't forget to do your BSE!!! And check in with Holy Mama and let her know you're OKAY!!!