A week goes by and I realize I hadn’t gotten the results from my pap. I’d never dealt with an abnormal one, so I thought nothing of it. I decided to call just to be certain. “Doctor would like you to come in for a cervical biopsy because your test was abnormal.”
Full stop. What iota of wind that may have been left in my sails, was gone. What do you mean “abnormal”? I’m already on my last leg of fertility, what else in fresh dystopian hell could go wrong?
Well… apparently HPV. Human Papilloma Virus. Before you cringe and judge, you can literally get it from grabbing a doorknob, and according to Ali Wong, you’re weird if you don’t have it. I digress. The thing about HPV is there’s a plethora of strains. Some cause warts. Some cause cancer. Some do nothing and your body becomes immune to them and ‘cures’ you before you even know you had it. I happened to be lucky enough to have the strain that causes cancer.
I arrive for the biopsy. I’m a mess. I’m waiting on this table for at least an hour – spread eagle, no less – and the doctor finally comes in. It wasn’t the worst possible procedure in terms of pain, but when the doctor tells you she’s using what’s essentially a hole punch to turn your cervix into swiss-cheese when you already know that your tubes and ovaries are fucked.. I promise you it’s not an ego-booster.
I can’t recall how long it was before the test results came back, but it felt like an eternity. I was tired of constantly finding out that yet another thing was wrong with my body. I was able to at least breathe a small sigh of relief that there were no pre-cancerous cells. But now that this roadblock had passed, I still felt stuck in the same place I had been a month prior to all of this: Blocked tubes, with no one to help.