Who says gynecologists aren’t fun? Me.
If you haven’t read about my recent invasive trans-vaginal ultrasound or even more invasive, painful biopsy, please do so now. It will prepare you for the next chapter in the hopefully closed book of my female health. I’ll just wait here. I have some wine, anyway.
Oh, are you back already? Ok.
At the end of Fun Female Field Trip Part 2, I discussed the next step my doctor thoughtfully laid out for me in my pursuit of gynecological wellness, also known as “being able to get some sleep at night and quit worrying” syndrome.
I was assured, repeatedly, by two nurses and the doctor, that the test I needed to have to determine why I was surfing a never-ending crimson tide was quick and most importantly, painless. This test would be done with water and ANOTHER trans-vaginal ultrasound. I learned a long time ago not to Google things of a medical nature but I would have Googled the shit out of it if I could have remembered the name of it. I didn’t remember the name of it because my mind had blocked it out. It tends to do with traumatic experiences.
For those of you who skipped ahead and didn’t read the other posts, obviously you failed in “listening and following directions” in grade school. A trans-vaginal ultrasound is just fancy talk for an ultrasound wherein you can’t pee for approximately a week in preparation, and then a gigantic “wand” is used to view what’s going on from the inside.
Ladies, beware and trust me on this. If you enter an ultrasound room and there’s both gel and a “wand” covered with a fresh condom, you can bet money that wand is taking a trip to hoo-hah land. It’s messy. It’s uncomfortable. It’s embarrassing. And in my case, it was inevitable.
The day of my test, I was sick with anticipation but just wanted to get it over with. Surely anything I was imagining was far worse than what actually would happen. What’s a little water, after all? I like swimming and baths. I got to the doctor’s office at 12:45 p.m. for a 1:00 p.m. appointment, and was immediately weighed (a story for another day) and unceremoniously tossed into a back room. I was handed a sheet and given a look that clearly said you know what to do.
There I sat, getting more and more nervous, for 45 minutes. 45 minutes is not a very long time if you’re going out for ice cream, seeing a movie, or getting a massage. However, if you’re naked from the waist down under a tiny sheet, and more importantly if you’re me, it’s a very long time.
The nurse finally came in and explained that Doctor (they always do that, too, don’t they? Call them Doctor like you or I would say “Tom” or “Ray”) was delayed at the hospital but would be in shortly and sure enough, within a few minutes, she was there. Let the festivities begin.
I knew I was in for an hour of fun when I heard the word catheter and uterus used in the same breath. Oh, joy. I was subsequently speculumed and although they tried strenuously to put the catheter where it belonged, it wouldn’t go. I have to give them snaps for effort, however. Those ladies were determined. I have the scars to prove it.
However, their amusement was bought to a halt when water ran everywhere except into my uterus.
They figured out pretty quickly what was wrong, adjusted things slightly and YEP, YEP, OH YEAH, THERE’S THE WAND.
|um, not that kind.|
She meandered around down there for a few seconds, but couldn’t visualize whatever it was she was supposed to see. Because I had been put in this room and abandoned for a very long time, my bladder was too full. Oh, sorry, totally my fault.
Great. Tools that recently were inserted were now un-inserted and I was told that the hallway was “pretty deserted” which was a good thing, considering the sheet I had to hold around me was the size of a tissue.
I took care of business, hopped back up onto the table, and the speculum process began all over again. Once she was able to visualize the actual area she wanted to see, Doctor was very complimentary about my bladder emptying. (I have been waiting for years for someone to compliment me about that very thing. Good things come to those who wait, people. Good things come to those who wait.)
Doctor fusses. She harrumphs. She seems very annoyed and finally says to her cohort in torture, “Go get (name withheld). She can work the wand while I push the water. I need to be able to visualize the complete uterus and blahbitty blah, blah, blah blah” which I didn’t hear because my brain was stuck on work the wand.
I have nothing against Germans. I myself am part German. However, the woman (and I use the term loosely) they pulled in to assist with my procedure was half German and half agony aficionado. She took “work the wand” to new levels.
I exhausted all my deep breathing techniques and Zen thinking and concentrated only on crab climbing backward up the table to get away from my persecutors. At this point, I’m not sure what was so attractive about having this done in the doctor’s office as opposed to in the hospital under my good friend anesthesia.
I hear the German say, “I see zee problem, Doctair. She haz zee floppy oss.”
I finally find my voice. “Hey, that’s a little personal, lady! I’m right here! It’s only floppy because I just haven’t been able to work out much lately!!”
I’m ignored. No surprise there, because apparently (TMI, turn away now if you haven’t already) she was saying “floppy os” which is Latin for “mother of three.”
Finally, FINALLY, they see what they need to see. And then some. And it’s all normal. Which is great news but I still have three women all standing between my legs, while more sensitive regions are covered by this tissue sized sheet. Oh, wait, no, they’re not covered because the sheet has been pushed up for maximum humiliation and embarrassment. (Or for them to be able to see, but I’m totally going with the humiliation thing. I’m still bitter.) Um, we're done here. You can go now.
The two nurses finally, finally leave the room. Doctor pats my leg comfortingly (she thinks) and says, a glint in her eye, that I’m probably just going through early menopause. “Don’t worry. You won’t ever have to see me again.” (#youbetyourfloppyosIwon't) A chirpy laugh burbles out of her and I think, of all the people on my shit list, you’re at the very tippy top right now. I will do everything in my power to stay away from this office.
I am holding back tears, mostly angry tears because I’m pissed that my roundhouse kick to the German’s butt missed.
I settle for letting the air out of her tires on my way to get ice cream and a 45 minute massage, floppy os be damned.