"Is your blood pressure always that high?"
"Nooooo. Hm mm. Nope."
What I MEANT to say was, "Oh. my. holy. roast. Are you freakin' kidding me? You make me wait over two months for this appointment and another hour in the waiting room, to get the anxiety juices EXPLODING through my veins. The pager flashes and buzzes, scaring the bejebus out of me. You walk me back here, have me pee in a cup, weigh myself in front of TWO other nurses, with the new HIGHLY ACCURATE electric scale that ALSO MEASURES BODY FAT PERCENTAGE~THAT'S RIGHT, BODY FAT PERCENTAGE~and you LEAVE MY EXTREMELY HIGH SCORE (not a basketball game, people...not PROUD of this high score) SCREAMING IN DIGITAL NEON TO DELIGHT EVERY PASSER-BY! Then you seat me, stab and squeeze the hell out of my finger and strap a cuff to my arm that turns into a tourniquet, where I can feel the resounding thud of my pulse while I contemplate the stirrup ride that is waiting for me in the next room. Had I walked off the plane and into this women's center, from a tour of duty in Afghanistan, with the machine gun still strapped to my back and enemy blood splattered on my face, my heart still couldn't slam any harder into my chest than it is right now.
"Are you drinking any caffeine?"
(long pause) "Um. Not a lot."
What I MEANT to say was, "Yes. Yes, I am. And it's medicinal...much like California marijuana. And if you think for even a split second that you're taking THAT away from me, you are UP IN THE NIGHT! You can have my Dr. Pepper and Diet Coke (with lime~that's important) when you pry them out of my cold, dead hands!" (thank you, Charlton Heston)
"Have you had a mammogram?"
"No, not yet."
What I MEANT to say was, "I know you told me to do this last time. And I was disobedient. And I feel badly about that now...mostly because I got caught. And because my dear neighbor has breast cancer and she's about my age, so apparently I'm not immortal. But mostly because I got caught."
"Do you do self breast exams?"
What I MEANT to say was, "I did them for a good, strong month after the last exam. Just like I flossed my teeth for the month after my last cleaning, where they scraped the gunk off, what felt like, my soul. I am a slothful, daft, fair weather lump checker/teeth flosser. And I'm sorry."
One last comment~
"Your 'lining' is a mess, dear."
"Wow. Is it?"
What I MEANT to say was, "Really? Why, thank you. Because I have sooooo much control over my uterine lining."
Anyway, good times. Good times.
What I MEANT to say was, "Hated it. Every single second. But I'm a woman and I'll be fine."