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Preventative Maintenance

Today was a big day – it was time for the ever-so-lovely annual exam. As an added surprise, my nurse practitioner checked my derriere. I think that sounds 100 times better than saying rectal exam! Woo Hoo! She went on to inform me that this special treat is part of every annual physical after the age of 40! How lucky is that?

I don’t want to seem like I enjoyed this little piece of nirvana too much, but I think it necessary to point out that I’m 44 and it is the first time I’ve ever had this type of examination, unless you count the time when I was five and for some reason my old pediatrician poked his chubby fingers around my nether regions. I can’t remember exactly why it needed to be done, but I do remember staring at the wall in the examining room with my mom and then, “whoa, what was that!” I think I could have cracked a walnut open with my butt cheeks!

Should I feel cheated that I haven’t had a similar experience for the previous three annual visits? Like hearing, “scoot down a little more, a little more please, keep going” doesn’t provide enough excitement in one day; I have even more to anticipate next year. Now, along with the big leg shave, fragrant body lather and stray hair plucking I’ll need to prepare another area for perusal. I can hardly wait! Oh well, at least I’m making the time for preventive care.

Before I lost weight, I dreaded going to the doctor. The monstrous scale loomed and the BMI chart made me break out in cold sweats. My solution was to avoid it all. If I didn’t go, I didn’t have to hear that I needed to drop a few pounds, OK 100, to avoid cholesterol and blood pressure medication. Since then, I realized that I like my health care provider – I feel like we’re partners in my well being.

I’d much rather sit and talk with her over a cup of coffee than through the damn paper cape thing they provide, but she doesn’t seem to mind. I do have one question. If the crinkly paper drape gaps once the she is finished examining me, but before she leaves the room, am I a prude if I realign it, or should I be comfortable enough in all my glory to sit there and chat like my boobs aren’t hanging out?


5 Responses

  1. Well, I know you know how I feel, but…yes, it is ok to cover yourself up, and actually, I think the doctors also appreciate it. Not to say you don’t have good boobs, but…if they’re older than 25 and/or have experienced nursing, I’d say cover them up 🙂

  2. Hmm, I have not had the rectum check up and am also 44. Guess I have that to look forward to next month. After Farrah Fawcett lost her life to that particular cancer, I will put up with a Woo Hoo exam. I agree with NC above… it is ok to cover thyself.

  3. I opt for coverage…much over 25, nursed wayyyyy too long. Hell, I don’t even like looking at my own knockers, why would I want to subject someone else to them!

  4. Yeh… I’ve found that as I approached 40 that the same “bottoms up” exam became important to men. My only advice… find a doc with small fingers!

  5. Well, that’s good advice, now…

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