Hi there you
Yes its been blimmin ages since we last spoke. Loads of things have happened: I turned 30, my best friends got engaged (choir included), and I had half my cervix scoped out in Wythenshawe.
Yeah, I snook that in on purpose.
If you are a boy and you stopped reading because of that last sentence. Shame on you.
If you’re a girl and you decide you aren’t interested then you’re an idiot. And that’s coming from me, who has a friend as yet unnamed (Jess) who thought geese were male swans – yes, she is a high ranking banking lawyer!
Dear Reader, we have reached the pinnacle of blogging topics. The smear test.
The point of this is not to terrify, guilt, or trick you into having your cervix felt by a stranger. But I do suggest that if that’s your inclination, the stranger should always be a medical professional and definitely be done in the right context. “You have a lovely cervix” is the worst chat up line ever. Second only to “Is that a speculum in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?”
Where was I? Oh yes – my cervix.
(Please can the above sentence be on my tombstone)
For the uneducated amongst us, the reason we ladies have to have smear tests is because we attract bears when we have our periods and you guys can’t deal.
It saddens me that some people might think I’m being serious. The only thing I am serious about is that the better half of my baby maker is currently residing in the ‘Shawe. It’s probably being initiated into a gang as I am typing this. It’s already got a tat and is about to shoot its first video with Ashatni. Goddam it!
Right, back on track.
I think, like everyone, that I get very scared when people talk about bad results from smear tests. The poster girl for this vital test is Jade Goody, who captured all our hearts when she was told she had cervical cancer whilst in the Indian Big Brother House. This led to what has been known as “The Jade Goody Effect” where women in their thousands were getting smear tests.
Jade Goody passed away in 2008. Thats’s nearly 8 years ago. Back when Miley Cyrus was still Hannah Montana and the world was just a much better place because of it.
As magnificent as Jade Goody’s impact was, it has slowed down. Women aren’t paying enough attention to this lifesaving test.
Btw I know that you probably are yelling though your laptop or phone that you care and you had a smear test. I’m really not trying to be condescending, the reason I say this is because I didn’t. I came back from uni (big up East Yorkshire), and I didn’t register with a GP immediately. I couldn’t be bothered.
I met my husband and gave birth to my child moved back in with my parents, I re-registered with my GP and got the letter. I put it off and eventually just quite fancied a morning off work so I went.
It was fine, well as fine as it can be when a stranger looks up your hoo-ha. It didn’t help that I had just joined a touch rugby league so had cuts and bruises all over my legs. Yes the reason behind the rugby league was to meet boys, and no, it didn’t work. I didn’t understand the rules and nearly killed someone. I’m affectionately known as Sophie “clothesline” Fox
Anyway, after that test I got called back as I had what was called mild dyskariosis. That is basically mild abnormal cells that could at some point possibly maybe sometimes turn into cancer.
I was asked to attend a colposcopy. Essentially they put a thin wire/camera up “the goddess’ and check your cervix for any abnormal signs that need seeing to.
At this point I have to say that I am in awe of the doctors, scientists, engineers and whoever the hell thought of this procedure. When you think about of the number of people that have worked their whole lives to develop the technology and knowledge to make something like this possible, it makes the people that don’t even bother to do it look like total douchebags (just sayin). Anyway, that time I had to have a biopsy which came back clear and that was that.
Fast forward to three years later, I am now 30 years old but still living with parents as magic rugby playing billionaire husband still hasn’t had the curtesy to find me. Smear test letter arrives and I go. This time I have whats called severe dyskaryosis, a few more abnormal probably not cancerous cells.
Another day another colposcopy.
For those that don’t know, in my day job I am a medical negligence solicitor. It therefore gets very awkward when lovely gynaecologist man asks you what you do for a living, especially when you are aware that he’s within reaching distance of sharp utensils and a heap of anaesthetic. Thank god the nurse was there as he may have actually tried to kill me.
As the doctor uses the camera, they ask if you want to watch it on the T V. It’s so weird but for at least two minutes you can actually have your head up your own toot.
(Warning – making that joke while he is in the middle of the procedure probably won’t elicit the raucous laughter you were hoping for. Trust me.)
So this time they put a dye in and any abnormal cells glow white, or in my case the whole thing just lit up like Snop Dogg in Amsterdam. Yes, that is the second time I have compared my cervix to a rapper. And what?
What they then do is a thing called a Large Loop Excision of the Transformation Zone or LLETZ. Personally I think they could have come up with catchier title but whatever. This basically involves scooping out the cells that look a bit dodgy. They don’t let you watch this but but they do give you a local anaesthetic which stings a bit but also is full of adrenalin so your legs start shaking. It was such a weird sensation I got the giggles in a big way, which again is a bit of an odd reaction when three people in the room are trying to perform a medical procedure on you. I won’t be surprised if he refers me to the psychiatric ward after the way I behaved.
I’m not going to lie and say that it was a pleasant experience. There are better things I would rather be doing with my Tuesday morning but it really wasn’t that painful, everyone is lovely and it is over pretty quickly. Afterwards they make you a cup of tea and give you biscuits (yes!). The good thing is that you aren’t allowed to go back to work which was ideal as I had body pump and spinning planned for after work and really didn’t want to do that either.
They say not to go back to work because you don’t know how your body will react. Gravity being what it is, what went in must come out after all.
Personally I had period cramps and theres a bit of gross things I would rather not talk about but other than that I’m fine. It was nothing that an afternoon watching “Say Yes To The Dress” wouldn’t cure.
Yes Dear Reader, although my marriage is as far away as ever, I have a weird passion for reality TV where women try on wedding dresses. In case you were interested – Huge dress big enough to camp in at Glastonbury and covered in enough diamonds to kick start Greece = No.
After an LLETZ 95% of people don’t need any further treatment. You simply have a follow up in 6 months and then back to regular 3 year screenings. I should find out in about 3 or four weeks which is great as “results from invasive medical procedure” was the top of my wish list to Father Christmas this year.
I have to confess that when I typed the above paragraph I used the word Santa. To my countrymen and my Queen I am very sorry – yet another example of those damn Yankees taking over the world again (I now make it a point of saying Series instead of Season but I fear it is a lost cause).
So, not that you asked but that is how my week has gone. How amazing is that! People are literally curing cancer, and all I have managed to do today is watch SERIES 1 of House of Cards and look at pictures of Ice Ts new baby.
This probably wasn’t the content you thought you would get when you saw I had a new post up. I wasn’t going to write about it but having spoken to my friend Steph last night over many a wine, she had not heard of a LLETZ before and I thought I should share (probably too much) with you.
So girls – GET A SMEAR TEST!!! Boys -bravo on reading to the end and be thankful for your balls (even more so than you probably already are).
If you read this and you get an abnormal smear result girls, hopefully you will have learned that it doesn’t hurt, its a bit scary but it is ok, and under no circumstances make jokes with the gynaecologist.
Oh and I am also in a pantomime on ice dressed as a market girl from Aladdin. But more on that next week.
p.s you have no idea how hard it is to think of different ways of saying the word vagina.