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?
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?
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.