That Time I Went To The OB-GYN With Toilet Paper Hanging Off Of Me

by Colleen Dilthey Thomas
Originally Published: 
Courtesy of Colleen Thomas

Friends, where do I even begin? It was the morning of my annual OB-GYN appointment. I don’t dread this day like many women. As a matter of fact, I kind of like it. My doctor is one of my favorite people on the planet. He introduced me to my four children. Who wouldn’t love that person? The office staff is always sweet and I never feel uncomfortable. I woke up happy and ready to face the day.

I got in the shower. I even made it in without any children following me and I remembered to lock the door, so there wouldn’t be any uninvited guests. I shave my legs every day. It’s just a thing. I don’t like hair. This morning was no different. One little change was my razor blade; I had grabbed a fresh one before I got in. As I was shaving my legs, I got a bit aggressive on the shin of my left leg and dug in a little too heavily. It looked like Old Faithful had erupted in that shower. There was blood EVERYWHERE! Think “Psycho” shower scene. I mean, it was baaaaddddd.

Courtesy of Colleen Thomas

I finished up the rest of my business and hopped out. The second I was on dry ground, I began to address the wound. I wiped away the blood, but it kept coming. I had to put lotion on my legs, because that skin looks like an alligator if I don’t, so I worked around the cut. I got the bleeding semi under control and grabbed a large piece of toilet paper to help stop the hemorrhage. The lotion acted like a pretty strong adhesive and the toilet paper stuck on perfectly. I was good to go and went on about my business.

Did I mention that I am wearing a giant knee brace on my right knee that cost nine hundred fucking dollars? No? Well I am. I am also bitter, not only about the fact that it cost nearly a mortgage payment, but that my body has started to fall apart at 42 and I need the godforsaken thing! Ugh. It really sucks. I cannot wear any pants, or my favorite yoga capris; I have to rely on shorts and dresses because the damn thing has to make contact with my skin so it doesn’t slip. Anyway….I threw on my brace and my dress, fixed my hair and put on my makeup. I headed downstairs, said goodbye and kissed my husband and four kids and went out on my merry way.

I got to the hospital and met a lovely gentleman on the elevator. He apologized for his appearance; he was wearing pajama pants due to some leg swelling, and I just smiled and told him not to worry. I got off on the third floor and was stopped by two very pleasant people doing COVID screenings. I answered their questions, complimented one woman’s mask, and headed to the office.

Courtesy of Colleen Thomas

I walked in and was greeted at the window by a cheerful nurse who handed me some paperwork. I then went back with another nurse to the examination room. We exchanged pleasantries, talked about our kids, and did the blood pressure check. The whole shebang. She left. I got undressed, took off the brace, and put on the gown. Then my beloved doctor came in.

It is always so wonderful to see him. I’ve been his patient since I was 20 years old and have entrusted him with the most precious parts of my life. He has a wonderful, funny personality and always makes his patients feel comfortable. He performed all of the exams, breast, stomach, pelvic, Pap smear. All.of.them. We chatted for a bit, and the visit was over. I said goodbye to everyone and that I would see them in a year. He gave me paperwork for a mammogram, so I headed to the breast center.

I marched back to the elevator, told those screeners to have a great day and left. I got in my car, drove to a second building, got out, and walked in. I met two more COVID screeners who saw my sticker and sent me on my way. I made it to the breast center where I spoke to a receptionist, who said they were full, so I made an appointment to go back. I headed to the parking lot and to my car.

Courtesy of Colleen Thomas

As I was approaching my van, I just happened to see a flash of white. Curious, thinking that a piece of trash must have blown by in the rainstorm we were experiencing, I looked down for further inspection. And holy. fucking. shit! It wasn’t trash blowing by. It was me! I had toilet paper hanging from my leg. And not just a little; it looked like an entire fucking roll. I never took it off after dressing my wound. OMG!

If you noticed, I explained my day in great detail. Among those details was the number of people who I encountered along my journey. If you don’t want to go back and count for yourself, here’s a clue. There were 14! I spoke to 14 different people in the span of approximately 2 1/2 hours and not a single one of them said a word. Note that I didn’t say they did not notice; I said that they didn’t speak of it. You know someone noticed! How could you miss it? I was in the fucking stirrups. My shin was in his face. It was right there. He saw it! You know he did. And he probably laughed about it with the whole office when I left. And I don’t blame them! You know you would be laughing too! “There goes Colleen with toilet paper hanging off of her like a mummy. She’s either drunk or crazy!” And I don’t even drink. God help me!

And, let’s talk about me. I got totally undressed and removed the enormous apparatus from my other leg and never noticed? How in the hell did I walk the equivalent of 25 miles in two different buildings and never look down once? Because here’s the thing. Once I saw it, I couldn’t unsee it. This sucker was huge!

Look, I am not one to shy away from my faults. As a matter of fact, my first inclination was not to tear the toilet paper off and run to the comfort of my Chrysler Pacifica. No, as soon as I saw it, I grabbed my phone and took a picture. Then, I got on my extended family’s group text to show them the stupid thing that I had just done. After that, I began to compose my Facebook post. Because, why not? Fourteen of my pals had already seen it; who the hell cares now?

Courtesy of Colleen Thomas

Some people would look at this situation and immediately try to find a new gynecologist. I, on the other hand, will be sending a link to this story directly through my healthcare provider’s app the minute it is published. But, I think that I may change things up a bit in the personal care department. I am not looking for a new doctor, but it might be time to start looking for an aesthetician who specializes in full body waxing. Or maybe just use dull razors. Whatevs…..

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