I’ve never wanted to have my own babies. “I ain’t birthing no babies,” I used to tell my mom.
When I found out that some women could have children and others couldn’t, I told God he could give my fertility to some other girl who really cared about having babies of her own. I’d adopt, I said. You’d think, being the kind and giving child that I was, God would simply make me infertile—maybe make me too petite to bare children (if only!). No, he gave me endometriosis, a condition that causes blood to form on ones internal organs instead of just the inside of the uterus during menstruation. You think cramps are bad, yours are probably contained. Mine line the entire inside of my abdominal region—hurts to pee, hurts to poo, hurts to live. There were times when I would asked my mom to drug me and leave me to die. Because of this I have been on birth control since I was 17 to control my condition and help prevent the endometriosis from flaring up as bad. However, I started thinking I’d like to have less hormones in my body and maybe I’d like to get an IUD that is implanted on the cervix and releases hormones just in that area rather than the pill whose hormones affect the whole body. I went to a Women's Health Center (I won't say where, but a very reputable place, don't worry, it wasn't some sketch shop) in Omaha to learn more. This was my first time going to a doctor outside of my hometown, Norfolk, Nebraska. My first time, in my twenty-three years, making my own decision about my health and seeing a doctor about it. When I tell the doctor that I have endometriosis, she says something like "Oh, we have a specialist on that here! Let me see if I can bring him in!" Well, ok, whatever, I think, a specialist should be good. I want to make sure I make the right decision. The dude comes in and he and the other doctor get me all set up for an examination and the woman is trying to get the speculum in and she can't get it, can't get it, can’t get it--UH, OW! Hello? So, she tries a different sized one, still can't get it. So the guy tries and tries and uses two other sizes of speculum. I don't know what their problems are, my gyno at home in Norfolk had no problem taking care of me and it never hurt, but this is incredibly awful. The guy keeps complaining that I won't relax, like I'm not there, then finally, FINALLY, he says, "Oh, there it is! Huh, the British way worked!"
Well, lovely, I have British lady parts. If ever I go horseback riding, I’ll be sure to ride sidesaddle.
So the thing is in. Great. Next he's looking in there and he says, "Wow. That's weird! Wow! I've never seen anything like that before!" He turns to the girl doctor and the nurse and says, "Come look at this! Wow, no wonder it was so hard to be able to see anything." I'm thinking, "What? Do I have some kind of tumor down there? A growth obstructing view? A monster hiding? Does my vagina have teeth? What, what, what!?" But, they don't tell me. They just agree, wow that is strange. Then they ask if they can bring in more people. Well, jeez, I think, what's more people staring at my business? I already have three heads down there now! So more doctors come in. And the woman finally tells me what was so interesting about my downstairs. No, it's not, like, gold crusted or anything amazing like that. My cervix is just way off to the left rather than in the middle like is normal. Is that bad? No, it's just different and definitely means I can't have an IUD. Well, that's ok. Now I know and I'll just stick to my prescription. I think since we have that resolved, I'll be able to put on my undies and peace out. But no. There’s more. The guy doctor who is the endometriosis specialist then asks if he can, I kid you not, take a picture.
Via: Public Domain Pictures Well, I think, I guess it’s for science and these people are all professionals. "It's ok, as long as you don't post it on Facebook," I tell him.
They promise me my name will not be on any photos of my woo-hoo. Here I am, medical miracle, probably going to be plastered all over uterus journals and I'm not going to get any credit. I should have asked for any royalties he gets for his discovery of my lefty cervix. So he takes the picture and I hear a little shutter click sound effect, like from a freaking camera phone. The dude says, "Oh, wow, that sound is annoying. Let me turn that off." He just keeps clicking away down there, I assume, because he is constantly showing the other doctors the shots and they are telling him to try not using flash or positioning a lamp for him. He got the best shot crouching off of his chair on the floor and shooting up. The nurse is pretty cool about it. She laughed at my Facebook joke and tells me to "Say Cheese!" I ask her if the next time I come back if I’ll find a medical journal with my glamour shots sitting on the reception desk in the office lobby. This experience is way too awful and funny to not share with everyone I know so I immediately call my mom and tell her about it, because if I can't laugh about it, I'm not sure what to do. She tells me maybe people can start calling me Lefty.
Erin Darby Gesell is a Young Adult Fiction writer from Omaha, Nebraska who loves puppy dogs, dark chocolate, new shoes, the Beatles, good books and working out. http://sillysassystronggirls.blogspot.com/