Maybe it’s just me, but vaginal ultrasounds are not as fun as the name makes it sound.
Total TMI, but let’s just put that out there.
And in case you’re wondering, no, it doesn’t make a difference if you try to conjure up images of George Clooney or Channing Tatum or Shakira for that matter – having a 25 year old gum-popping tech on the other end of a medical wand shoved up your hoo-haw is NOT a good time.
i tried to relax. i tried to breathe. i found myself making jokes out of nervousness.
“So, how can you tell those are cysts in there and not, like, aliens or something?”
“Lots of school.” Snap. Pop.
“Oh.” More awkward silence. i try again. Maybe appealing to the massive amount of experience i am sure she has gathered in her quarter century here on earth will help break the ice.
“Can you see the cysts?” Breathe…breathe…
“Yep.” Pop. Snap.
“Well….do you know what size they are?” i ask while trying to remember that gritting teeth is the opposite of relaxing.
“I don’t diagnose, I just take pictures,” Torture Tech responds. Then she leans away from the monitor (no no no! i am still intimately connected to you! ouchieouchieouchie!) to look at some notes.
“It says here they are 5 centimeters,” she states and then (thankfully!) moves back within the i-will-not-punch-you-in-the-neck range.
5 centimeters! That’s big…right? i mean..as cysts on an ovary go? How big is that? Curse my ethnocentric disdain of the metric system!! Thoughts of George/Channing/Shakira are quickly replaced with images of a yard stick versus a metric ruler…which was bigger? Which hashmarks were centimeters? WHY didn’t i pay more attention in high school math? Oh yeah…Boys. Girls. Cheerleading. Psychedelic ‘shrooms. It was a confusing time.
And “they”? Is it a whole family of baby cysts adding up to a 5 cm mass or a bunch of gangsta 5 cm cysts all hanging out ruining the neighborhood?? i decide i can’t handle any more answers from Little Miss Hoo-Haw Handler (or risk she might forget what she’s doing again and play row-row-row your boat with the wand) and i go back to breathing. Just a little bit more, i think. This CAN’T go on much longer. Can it?
15 minutes (2 hours in vaginal ultrasound time) later, and she almost-gently, ends the exam and pulls out the wand. i just lay there. Wondering if i should thank her. Or ask for a cigarette.
“Ok.” She deadpans. “You can head down the hall to the bathroom to de-goop, dress, and de-part.”
Was that a joke? i mean..it sounded like it could be. But..isn’t the bathroom, like, outside this private room and down the hall? i stand up. Carefully. i hold my underwear and skirt in my hand.
“Ummm. So, i go out in the hall…like this?”
The Princess of Pain glances up at me. i think i might have actually blushed.
“Yep,” she goes back to cleaning up. “if you don’t care, we certainly don’t.” Snap. Pop.
But i DO care! i care VERY VERY MUCH!!! i scream. In my head.
“Ok,” i say. In my outside voice. And i gather my clothes with about as much dignity as a recently-wanded, half naked and extremely uncomfortable patient can muster and waddled out into the hall. Thankfully, the boys out there were busy looking at monitors and taking notes and i padded on down the hall and ducked into the bathroom to clean up. It took a while. A long while. A long long while. i was kinda hoping long enough that anyone i might have met coming in to this appointment might be gone. i needed a quick, quiet and unseen exit. Just slip-out-the-door-and-leave-bus-fare-on-the-bedside-table kinda exit.
i crack open the door.
The boys are still there. Geeez! Can a girl get a break here?
i walk as quickly and quietly behind them and down toward the blessed “This Way To Lobby” sign.
“Have a good day ma’am!” one of the boys looks up and cheerily waves.
i send a small wave back, duck my head and walk/run the last 10 feet (50 miles in vaginal ultrasound distance) down the hall and out the door. And i didn’t let it slam on my ass.
i’d like to say to my fellow sistahs that this is no big deal and if you need a VU, well then! By golly, go for it! And treat yourself to a latte and pedicure after! Make a day of it! But if i actually wasn’t lying? i would say run. Run far far away. Or laugh. Laugh long and loud. Just laugh and laugh. And then offer him (because it WILL be a HIM! No female would ever wish this upon another one! Ever!) the opportunity to come along and have one too. i’m sure we could find somewhere to stick it.
Which is EXACTLY what i’m going to say when my doc calls me and clears up the whole 5 centimeter business. And while i’m waiting for that call, i will finish making this voodoo doll which looks strangely similar to an ultrasound tech i recently met…