A Woman's Health

The first gift he ever gave me was a morning-after pill.

It seemed like the natural progression of events then, for me to now have my feet up in stirrups and a Middle Eastern woman asking me to spread as far as I can.

"Okay now. Spread them out as far as you can."

I self-consciously open my legs, fully aware that I have a small collection of black jean lint in the grooves between my thighs and my...other parts. I tried to wipe it away with spit before she came into the room, but I only succeeded in smearing things around like a child with fingerpaints. When she opened the door, my hands retreated in that guilty way, like I had been surprised while doing something truly subversive or private, and my guess is that she suspects me of masturbating.

"Is this enough?"

"That's perfect."

I never want to hear the word 'perfect' in this context again.

The doctor maneuvers her fingers in my vagina, asking me if any of the probing hurts. I have another flash of guilt as I realize that it feels okay. With dimmer lights and a different mood, it would feel downright good. Maybe I should have shaved my vagina for this.

Which is preferable for an STD test anyway? A well-groomed or a frizzy vagina? I mean, if it isn't very presentable, doesn't it seem more pure? Or is it just gross? It's the little bits of etiquette like this that I wish I had a handle on. In my case, considering the kindergarten masterpiece presented on my thighs, I suspect it's just gross.

The woman pulls a speculum from a drawer filled with all those unpleasant metal instruments that have become synonymous with a woman's health, and I shudder. Since my last pelvic exam, when a heartless doctor pushed down on my abdomen and gave a series of shoves with the device saying "Your cervix"--push--"just"--push--"won't"--push--"OPEN!" I have been terrified of the speculum.

It should be noted that no self-respecting cervix would open under these conditions. Not ever.

Mine did, and that's probably why I'm here today. My cervix is shady, and my vagina's a whore.

The cold metal is inserted and I flinch. "You'll feel a little pinch. Tell me if it's too uncomfortable."

I pull off an almost smile and say, "It's fine. Just hurry."

My cervix, perhaps having some capacity for memory, is much more cooperative. I grimace as I feel my inner walls being scraped for a culture and I decide right there that sex isn't worth all the maintenance. I am not a car, and I shouldn't have some dipstick coldly checking my levels as though I am.

The doctor pulls the speculum out and I sigh. "Okay. We're all done here." I snap my legs shut and lift my feet out of the stirrups. The doctor is sticking labels on two little vials, both filled with what was previously a part of me. I don't know why, exactly, but the idea of my more intimate bits being examined by a stranger--my identity reduced to a sticker--is very uncomfortable.

"Since it's Thursday, we should have results for you after the weekend. If something is wrong, I'll call you. Otherwise it'll be a nurse. So, if you don't hear my voice, you're in good shape."

She leaves with my vials and I redress.

to be continued...maybe


ETC said...

A kind of punishment that Aaron could never dish out.

Anna Nym said...

It should be noted that the story is, in fact, fiction. Well, in part. Exactly two things in the story are true, and I won't tell you which parts.

But, yes. Aaron could never deliver a punishment like this. And you will never experience a punishment like like what was written, so maybe you should thank your genitals for being masculine.