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I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Adventures at the Urogynecologist- Part 1

Between  my re-amputation, childbirth and my hysterectomy, I have endured more than my share of medical embarrassment. It is safe to say that I have been poked and prodded in more locations and through more methods than I care to admit. Throughout all of this, I have always tried to maintain some semblance of dignity. 

None of my previous experiences prepared me for my appointment with a urogynecologist. While I knew that the exam would definitely involve disrobing and some degree of intrusive exam, I was woefully unprepared for what was waiting for me behind the exam room door. I have never had such an intimate encounter with a man, including with my husband, as I did with the urogynecologist who examined me yesterday.

After a lengthy history, I was instructed to void my bladder over a specialized mat which was designed to measure flow intensity and speed. Urinating without a seat was difficult, but performing in front of an audience certainly made this normally mundane task an event. After a few episodes of urinary shyness, I was finally successful. I'm not too proud to admit that I almost broke into the "Happy Pee Pee" song and dance from our toilet training attempts.

I slipped into the paper gown secure in the knowledge that the embarrassing part of the exam was behind me. I was expecting a pelvic exam. Anytime I see "gynecologist" on the door, I am prepared to stirrup up and take one for the team. After childbirth, I no longer feel the squeamish embarrassment that was the norm in the blissful naivete of my youth. Middle-aged and more experienced, I confidently slipped my bum to the edge of the table, slipped my legs into the stirrups, buried my head under my arms and spread eagle. Within moments my doctor was lubed up and fully engrossed in his task at hand.  (I can't be certain, but at one point I think only his elbow was visible.)

Between the cancer and my pregnancies, I have probably experienced more than 50 pelvic examinations.  While they are never fun, the experience has always been predictable. Yesterday my doctor took me off guard by shaking up the mundane.

When he told me that he was going to perform a rectal exam, I assumed that he was joking. I even chuckled and said something classy like, "Oh, you have got to be kidding. Trust me, nothing- I mean nothing- has ever been there."  With the swiftness of an alley cat stalking his prey, I learned that he was not a jester. After what felt like an eternity of pushing, pulling and prodding, I just wanted to put on my panties and cry. Little did I know that this exam was not yet over. 

The doctor said something, but I couldn't really understand him over my whimpering. Judging from what happened next, I can only assume that he said something about inserting a catheter.  I don't know if it is a good thing, but I was too uncomfortable to feel the level of humiliation that the trifecta warranted.

Tune in to tomorrow's blog where I will tell the rest of the story. 

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