Checking on the sisters

by Symphony on September 9, 2011

The Himalayas

The twins, the ladies, the girls, the sisters, the Himalayas: Whatever you call them, you want to keep them as safe as possible.

I went for a mammogram on Wednesday morning.

First thing I did was sit down with the intake person. I had to fill out some forms, answer a few questions. You’ve been there. You know about the paperwork.

In her office, above her computer, was the picture of a little tow-headed boy eating a great big slice of watermelon. What a cutie.

“My co-worker’s son,” she said. She took a copy of my insurance card and asked me to fill out one more sheet.

There were two questions on it. I don’t remember the first one, but the second almost made me cry.

It said:  Because violence in the home is a serious health risk, we ask everyone: Do you have any concerns about your own personal safety?

All you had to do was check the box right next to that question and somebody would know. I wish it had been there when I was with Quinton–back in the black and blue years. I couldn’t tell anyone what was going on then, but I think I might’ve been able to check that box.

Well, when I got that done, a tech called my name and I followed her from the waiting room to this tiny, pink floral-curtained changing closet.

“Take everything off above the waist,” she said, smiling as if she and I were old friends. She handed me a blue gown. “And, put this on so it opens down the front.”

She walked away to peek at my file while I changed.

I closed the curtain, stripped to the waist, put on the gown, and was seated in a comfortable chair when she returned just moments later.

People are always making jokes so I was sort of nervous.

The tech applied the pressure a little at a time. As she increased it, she’d ask, “Are you doing okay?” She told me she would stop if it was too much.

But I was fine.

To tell you the truth, I never felt slammed between elevator doors and it certainly wasn’t like an eighteen wheeler rolled over my breast. It didn’t hurt.

There was one thing, though. I just kept thinking, “I hope there’s not a fire, I hope there’s not a fire,” ’cause I was wedged in there pretty good. But as soon as the tech pressed a button, the machine released and my breast sprung right back into shape.

Mammograms are painless and they help keep the sisters safe.

And speaking of safe, if your doctor has added a domestic violence question to their paperwork, thank them. If they haven’t,  ask them to consider it. That will save some sisters too.

Talk to you soon,

Symphony

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Kate September 9, 2011 at 8:34 pm

We must have passed in the hallway…I went in on Tuesday, dreading the whole ordeal. You’re right, it wasn’t bad, though I would prefer breast caressing as opposed to breast squeezing!

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Sarah September 10, 2011 at 7:48 am

Linking mammograms and domestic violence in one message is close to being an oxymoron.
I so appreciate the manner Ashland hospital treats a mammogram. Helping women to respect their bodies and understanding the vulnerability women experience is key in stopping abuse.
Thank you for your brave words.

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