Friday, March 1, 2013

Oh, how I love a paper robe!

Yes, it's that time of the year again. Time for the annual evaluation of all things private. Being 39 years old, with three kids and a healthy marriage under my belt, you would think Doctor C's yearly visit would be NO BIG DEAL. But it is. It's been almost 9 years since my last little came through the canal and frankly, I've aged. Every part of me. It seems, the further I travel from that beautiful baby-birthing time, the closer I get to painful modesty. Really...I used to not care about who saw what when there were babies being born, but today is a different day.

So here I sit, at the end of a cold, sterile medical table, in a tiny, generic exam room, dressed in a paper robe. It opens to the front and a form-fitting paper sheet is draped over my lap and tucked securely under my bare thighs. Hugging myself around the waist, I try to keep the robe closed and the stretch marks, soft middle and no-longer-perky pair, hidden. Meanwhile, I text my husband that I look HOT in my rose-colored paper robe.

It seems silly that as I sit and wait (there's always a wait) for the doctor's gentle knock, I grow even more nervous, clammy palms and all. Dr. C has seen me in all my child-bearing glory: stretched, swollen, swearing, so I really have nothing to hide from him, but I still get anxious when I hear the footsteps pacing the halls and medical charts rustling just outside the door. This paper robe won't be hiding much for long, that's for sure!

But it's not only the pending exposé that activates my nerves, it's also the potential findings that could be hiding in the lurch. Will he see something I can't see? Will he feel a lump? Some menacing mass? Will the "smear" reveal something I don't know is there? While I pray the answer is NO, and that today's visit will result in an "All-Clear," good for exactly one year, I am painfully aware that many women, receive different news. The "we should run more tests" news is what I fear the most. It's pure paranoia that has my stomach in knots while I pick out songs for my funeral and wonder if anyone was ever buried in a paper robe. It's ridiculous.

I try to relax, breathing deep, cleansing, antiseptic-scented breaths, aware that this annual appointment is the gateway to knowledge that I need, regardless of what shape that knowledge takes. As scary as the unknown can be, and even though the paper robe does nothing for my post-baby, carb-loving body, I know that this annual exam is critical.

So ladies, I encourage you, the minute you get the appointment reminder card, the one you likely addressed yourself at your last appointment, call and schedule your annual exam. If you have children, take a second to remember the giddy feeling you would get when your doctor visits resulted in an ultrasound picture of your growing baby. If you don't, consider these visits your required maintenance, taking care of the center of miracles right at your core. It's important, whatever age and stage you are at. Don't let too much time pass, don't let fear or flabbiness get in the way. We are empowered women and we need to take care of ourselves. Let's make a promise to each other, to tolerate our paper robes, proudly prop ourselves upon those exam tables, text our husbands that we look really HOT and hey, paper may be the new trend, and fight our fears of the unknown. After all, knowledge is power, ladies, not to mention, you really do look awesome in that paper robe! (wink)

{J}

3 comments:

  1. Very cute post! Timely for me too, because it's that time of year for me as well and I've been waiting for that reminder card to come and it hasn't come. Guess I've gotta pick up the phone and make an appointment...

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    1. It's amazing how much we rely on those reminders. Good for you that you were even expecting it. You are awesome! And thanks for visiting, Molly. It's nice to meet you. 😊

      March 4, 2013 at 10:35 PM

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