This is yet another post about woman stuff, so if you're male and reading this, you might want to stop right now and find something else to read. Why not take a look at Keith Olbermann's Countdown site ? Trust me, you'll be glad you did.
Okay, here's the thing. I went to Dr. Al Gore for my annual checkup. His real name isn't Al Gore, but he looks so much like our former Vice President that I've wondered if they're kin. To his credit, he has never rolled his eyes and sighed at me. This is no mean feat since he's been my doctor since 1986. He also managed not to make a locked box joke during my first pelvic exam, for which he deserves credit. But I'm digressing...
During this visit, I asked him about the absolute lowest age someone could reasonably expect to start menopause. (You see why I sent the guys over to Olbermann's site? They should be thanking me.) There's a good reason for this. I was sure I was going through menopause in 2000. I had a job where I had to do mulitple things like run a bitchy meme and come up with five to six fresh political jokes five days a week and was also told that the gig would run through the end of the election. Well, we all know how that worked out. Sometime around September, I stopped menstruating. I also stopped eating regularly and sleep became a hobby to be revisited whenever I could remember it. I thought it was due to me running out of eggs. Dr. Gore thought it was the stress of slipping into a persona that just wasn't me to entertain the masses and trying to find something funny about an election season that could have been scripted by Mencken on crank. When I when I went back to working with shelter kids at the first of the year and started merrily cycling, eating and sleeping again, we concluded that he was right. Score points for him for not being insufferable about it. Digressing again...
So I asked him about the Big M for real this time and he told me it was still a way off but that I needed to consider kegeling because the continual seasonal coughing thing I do this time of the year could cause the muscles that hold my stuff in to weaken. What? WHAT? I mean, I've joked about coughing up a lung or leaning over and feeling one of my eyes pop out, but now there's the very real possibility that I could cough and push out my uterus? What the...? Oh, that's just gross.
He then wrote down a URL for me to get instructions on how to kegel and blithely moved on to other topics while my mind was racing about what would happen if I dropped my freaking uterus. I was imagining waking up to find a collection of internal organs I had kicked to the foot of the bed in the night or worse, being in line at the bank or post office, coughing hard and getting a pantsfull of what should have remained inside of my body.
I let this anxiety get to me for about a week and finally called him to ask if there was anything else I could do to keep those muscles toned.
"It's not a big deal. You're getting a little older and it's time you paid more attention to details like that. Did you think your bladder was going to shoot out the next time you coughed?" he chuckled. He. CHUCKLED!
I wanted to say, "Yes, Dr. Gore, it has worried me for some time and when I got up to let the dog out to pee, my uterus just fell right the heck out. I've got it sitting here on a salad plate. Should I put it in a baggie of milk and bring it to you?"
What I said was, "Oh, no. That's just silly. Ha ha! Just doing a follow up."
"Well, good. Say hi to your mom for me!"
So that was that.
I'm not going to squeeze everything out like a cannoli in a kid's fist and life is good. Now I'm going to go see what Keith Olbermann has to say.
copyright 2006 Jas Faulkner