Thursday, May 21, 2009

Boobs and Blogging

I am tickled by how 21st century I am. I'm sitting here blogging on my new Netbook, in a Starbucks, wretched iced coffee at my elbow, after what felt like hacking into the government mainframe in order to access their Wi-Fi. My Kindle is by my side, as I'm tempted to download today's New York Times for the post-mortem on American Idol, which I didn't even watch this season. (But Adam, I'm feelin' you.) Occasionally, a Facebook update pops up in the corner of my screen.

Yup, it's official. I'm a total cliche. Sitting at a tiny table, framed by some gauzy beige curtains held back by polished wood rings (no doubt hand-carved in a developing nation) under the glow of a speckled yellow glass lamp, looking like the just-hatched egg of some rare, exotic bird. Outside the window, iceberg rose bushes wave in the breeze. Also some red ones, but I don't know what they're called. Just behind the roses, cars dart past, and behind them, a giant sign for the Sprint store. Grateful Dead coming through the speakers--"Box of Rain," really? In Starbucks? Is nothing sacred?

It was an irksome morning. Well, the first part was cute--it was "Pajama Day" for Jarrah's class, and she's been talking about wearing her (too small) Tinkerbell jammies for days now, and how I shouldn't make her eat breakfast because they were going to have "pancakes with syrup." Far be it from me to force my child into a healthy start for her day. She also made me tack a reminder note to the front door, which I was about to object to on the grounds of overkill when I remembered just how many things I've forgotten about completely--and that's just this week.

Then I headed to the outpatient hospital for my annual mammogram. This event combined many elements that I dislike into one delightful package--jammed parking garages (I'm totally claustrophobic), sickness and despair, huge signs with the word "CANCER" in block letters, waiting, paperwork, and total strangers grabbing my boobs.

I don't normally discuss my body parts in this blog--I'm just shy and retiring that way--but I figure a lot of my readers have probably endured this surprisingly low-tech ritual, or at any rate, will soon. I've only done it once before, and while it was uncomfortable, at least it was quick. Today, I had the distinct impression that this was a little like a porn shoot. Someone had a camera jammed up way too close to my intimate bits, and kept giving instructions like "drop your robe" and "relax and turn your head but lean towards me." Not to mention the little stickies they slap on the, em, headlights that--good lord--have Hello Kitty on them?

I'm not sure what it says about me that, the gentler they are with my delicate flesh, the less I am able to restrain my gag reflex as the minutes crawl by. Last year, the gal was cheery and rough, slamming each boob shut in the machine and pushing me out the door in under a minute. Today, there was altogether too much manipulation, and I stood there swallowing and hoping I didn't retch all over her. This happens during my annual, too, when my doc--a sweet man, but I guess I don't care for sweet--feels me up under the Holly Hobbie cape as gingerly as a 15-year-old boy on a movie date (not that I'm speaking from experience, you understand.)

At least the preamble was quick. I had maybe one minute of gripping my striped robe in the hallway (why even offer the robe? If I wasn't clutching it closed, it wouldn't perform any robely function whatsoever) before Our Lady of Perpetual Pokes and Prodding beckoned me into the icy room. Afterward, I needed a big hug and a slice of seven-layer devil's food cake, but neither was forthcoming. Harumph. I guess it would be enough to get that little piece of paper in the mail with the two little words I crave: "Results Normal."

Time to go pick up Jarrah. Hope the guy studying for finals at the next table didn't see me typing the word "boobs." Just the blogosphere. Let's keep this between ourselves.


Aunt LoLo said...

OHMYGOODNESSYOU'REHILARIOUS! Seriously...and yes - after every "internal exam" when I was pregnant, I wanted nothing more than a hug and something large, chocolate and decadent. Why don't they include THOSE in the exam, eh?

(Hello Kitty? Really???)

dena said...

You typed Boobs in Starbucks... that's still got me laughing!

I don't even watch AI, but was rooting for Adam as well... after I found out he went to my Alma Matter in San Diego! Love Mt. Carmel! Poor dude!

Stephanie said...

Stickies? Hello Kitty stickies no less? I'm feeling cheated, I've never had that added value.

The (female)techs at my clinic never give you privacy to disrobe or rerobe. I guess it doesn't matter, but it's always the worst, most awkward part for me.


Cheri @ Blog This Mom! said...

First of all, how in the heck DID you hack in at Starbucks? I tried ONCE for, like, all day, and then never again.

I'm feeling Adam, too. Literally. He's right here with me. Literally. In my imagination.

So. Mammograms. During my last visit to the breast, um, manipulation center, a woman in the waiting room stepped outside and stood next to the sign that, as you mention, had the word "CANCER" in it and lit up a cigarette. I swear to God. I could hardly blame her though.

erin said...

I'm totally jealous of you sitting on your own at starbucks, regardless how cliche you are.
Right now I'm typing this while yelling up the stairs for Max to bring me the lollipop she found in the pantry. She's insisting that I told her she could have it for breakfast...yeah...that sounds about right.

David said...

Very proud that my wife is now officially a geek.

Amanda said...

ohh my what a day. I haven't had a mam yet, but I am not looking forward to it. When are you supposed to start that?

As for the "tink" jammies I am right there with you. Breanna LOVES anything tinkerbell, or anything Disney Princess. (don't know how she know who Belle and Snow White are??)

I am not a nurse, although I work at the Oklahoma Heart Hospital I work in the accounting department. Not as glam as the nurses, don't get the acolaides either. We are completely behind the scenes.My sister is an ER nurse. We are complete oppisites in that aspect. I actually fainted once when I saw my sister getting a blood test done when we were kids!

Marlene said...

Have I told you lately how much I miss you?

Jen said...

Only you can make a mammogram an occasion for such hilarity!

But I'm with ya all the way. They suck.


Miss J

Laural Out Loud said...

No chocolate cake? I would've driven around until I found a place with the most decadent chocolate cake ever- you so deserved it.

MelADramatic Mommy said...

Delurking to drool over the netbook and the Kindle. My eyes are turning green!