I went to the clinic today as Ive been putting off something that needed doing for awhile now. In case your not aware from the pictures I went to have my breast examined.
Im reluctant to admit that the last time I had them checked was probably at least 4 years ago. I realize Im "only" 40 but there is a history of breast cancer in my family and so I should be a hell of a lot more diligent about keeping my check ups up to date.
Its just one of those things I keep promising myself to do next week and never do. So many other seemingly more "important" things that got in the way of my scheduling a check up. However, recently I realized I couldnt put it off any longer as certain symptoms have popped up that need investigating pronto. So off I went...
Now I dont know about other women but the one mammogram I have had was extremely painful. I am about a 40c and having that squished into a pancake that you could slide easily under a door is not without considerable pain. Doesnt seem fair when men basically just have to turn their head and cough (or so most comedy shows would have us believe). Would be nice if they had to have something or other squished to pancake size...then see how happy they are to have one...lol.
Anyhow, I went to a clinic that has several different offices with doctors practicing different specialties all under one roof. I informed the receptionist that I wanted to see a gyno doc and she filled my paperwork and I waited my turn.
When I walked into his office he immediately tried to put me at ease with small talk and a bit of charm. I dont mind small talk and charm at all...but as I looked around his office I didnt notice much in the way of advertisement for his field of practice. No gyno charts or pictures of how to perform a breast exam etc....nothing. After getting the small talk out of the way I asked him what his specialty was...he stopped smiling and just looked at me. I added that I couldnt tell just from looking at the walls..and wanted to make sure I was in the right office (happened to me before).
When he didnt answer as fast as I would have liked I asked him again..."what sort of doctor are you?" He answered, "a human doctor"...well ok then...breathing easier now. I laughed just to set him at ease as I felt he was somewhat offended...and explained that I just wanted to make sure I was in the right office...save some embarrassment. He relaxed and we got on with the exam.
Now the reason I asked him was because way back in the day when I first arrived in Bahrain at the tender age of 18...newly married...newly pregnant...and newly culture shocked into near silence...I visited a clinic for an earache. The doctor had charts all over his office indicating his specialty was for ENT...but for some reason when I informed him I was pregnant so any medications he prescribed should keep that in mind...he immediately had me lay on the exam table and did a full breast exam (nothing at all like this doctor did today) and took his time about it as well. Of course my newbie status in a foreign country...my newbie status as a pregnant woman and the sort of exams that go with that etc...and my ongoing lifelong status of not questioning the things that happened to me whether I agreed with them or not...kept me quiet throughout...even though I was extremely uneasy and was almost sure something wasnt kosher here.
After he declared me "cancer free" I left...went home...informed husband of the free breast exam I was just given by an ENT doctor...which caused husband to drive back to the clinic and chase Gyno impostor down the corridors and out into the parking lot where he taught him how to take an ass kicking...even though he wasnt really a boxer.
Anyhow....so I wanted to make sure there was no mix-up and that the doc was who or what he was supposed to be...fool me once shame on me as ...they say.
I had a regular breast exam today and will get the mammogram tomorrow...ugh!...but I realized that Im just being lazy and stupid by delaying this exam. There is a history of breast cancer in my family and Im a single parent to young children that depend on me and my good (decent) health for as long as they need me.
*btw I encourage all women to get their breasts examined on a regular basis. Breast cancer has a high cure rate if its caught early.