Wellness Wednesday: Who Doesn’t Love A Good PAP Smear?


Please don’t slap me.

I’m with you — I hate getting a PAP smear.  Like, with the burning intensity of a thousand suns.  I hate the stirrups.  I hate flashing my va-jay-jay to two other people (you see one, you’ve seen ’em all, but still…).  I hate the pinch and scrape.  I hate that I usually forget to shave my legs.  Toss in the humiliation of making yourself so vulnerable (physically and emotionally), and you’ve got yourself one of the most wretched parts of a doctor’s visit.

The last time I was at the OB/GYN, he offered — out of the blue — to give me a PAP smear because I hadn’t had one in the last six years.  “Let me get a nurse,” he said, “and we’ll just get this done.”

Uh, no, thanks.  Haven’t shaved my legs.

He wrote a letter to my GP, stating that I had declined a PAP test (snitch!) and would require one on my next visit.  I’m still dodging that one, even though I need a renewal on my birth control.

So, is my modesty worth a slow death from cervical cancer?

Absolutely not.

One of my paternal aunts got cervical cancer when she was not quite thirty years old.  A complete hysterectomy saved her life, but destroyed any hope that she would carry her own children.  I am not immune.  No woman is.

And don’t forget that if you have contracted HPV in the past, your risk for cervical cancer skyrockets.

I’m sharing this because I just made an appointment with my GP.  I had to grit my teeth when I specified I needed a PAP smear, but I kinda feel like a hero.

Because the last time I had one, the tests came back inconclusive.  Twice.  The third time, I got lucky.

So is my fear of a positive test worth a slow death from cervical cancer?

Absolutely not.

Hey — I made my call.  You go make yours.  And you can always reward yourself for your courage under fire with a trip to Pinkberry afterwards.  You brave devil, you.

 

 

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