I love smears….. ~ Northernmum

I love smears….. ~ Northernmum

I chant.. “I love smears, I love smears.”

Positive repetition works apparently.

Maybe I should have been repeating it since that last one as my happy mojo seems to have buggered off with my waistline.

“It’s not so bad.” I croon to my lady garden, who is looking quite presentable for the first time in months. My pelvic floors clamp angrily in disgust; why the hell they don’t respond like that when I am sneezing I will never know.

It is nine fifteen and my appointment is nine ten.  I reluctantly turn off the engine and slink like a teenager, head down, feet shuffling, mouth set in a scowl and head into the surgery.

“Blackmore, Jane” I mumble to the alert, skippy, receptionist. “Sorry dear?,” she questions, “I didn’t catch that.”

“Blackmore, Jane.” I repeat in a louder, grumpier tone. “Ahhhh” says the receptionist, “here for a smear? – I hope your vagina isn’t too smelly.”

“Pardon!?” I exclaim, heat rushing into my cheeks.

Startled the woman responds, “I said, I have booked you in with Doctor Kelly.  Please take a seat.”

Embarrassed I shuffle away and sit next to an old man who looks like he is suffering with a severe case of hives.”

I chant again, “I love smears, I love smears.”

The old man suffering with a severe case of hives moves his seat.

My name is called, my first reaction is to flee, hands covering my love bug.  But politeness rules me and I stand and walk into the doctor’s office.

I am asked to removed my lower garments and to lay on the bed and cover myself with a sheet.  I take great care to fold my jeans meticulously so I look like a neat person, I leave my best knickers on the top, pure lace, so the doctor can believe I have still have what it takes.  She need never know about the greying set of M&S I wear usually every day.  I lay on the table that she has called a bed and try to arrange a paper towel, which she called a sheet, to protect my modesty.  The paper towel breaks in my hand and I lay with half my princesses castle exposed.

Doctor Kelly walks into the curtained off area and attempts to make small talk.  I struggle with small talk at the best of times and normally take a thick book to the hairdressers to avoid such chats.  However etiquette tells me that reading a novel at a smear is bad manners so I left my kindle at home.

Maybe it is just me but I cannot chat about the weather or my impending holidays when half my vagina is exposed and I am in a room with a woman who I have never met before who is snapping on plastic gloves and brandishing a silver dildo shaped clamp at me.  But fair play to me, I attempted to try.

I confirm the weather was freezing and Cornwall is our destination of choice this year.

Then we both sit for a while in awkward silence whilst she prepares to insert a scary looking device into my seldom used love box.

“This may be cold.” she said without a hint of apology.

My eyes darted right to the radiator on the wall that was cheerily pumping out heat.  It was not like she didn’t know I was coming, would it have been too much to have rested the speculum on a soft towel on the radiator for five minutes to warm it through like a cheese scone?

Apparently so, the bastard thing felt like pure ice in my whatyamacallit.

“I see you have had an abnormal smear in the past,” she comments whilst fiddling about in my privates, “whoops, sorry.”

I gasp out a “yes” with tears stinging at my eyes from whatever the ‘whoops’ had pinched.

“So you have a smear yearly?”

Again I confirm ‘yes’ as much as I loathe (start chanting again) these things I am pretty sure it beats cervical cancer so I will carry on regardless.

“Just one more thing.” she continues and with a final pinch, “all done.”

With a smile she hands me another sheet of stiff paper, presumably to use to sort myself out as covering my lower half now seemed a bit redundant after she had just had a full conversation with the part of me that he who helped create them longs to see more often.

We continue another five minutes of cringe worthy conversation about the importance of smears until eventually impatience overruled politeness and I blurt out ‘can I put me knickers back on please.’

Then we are both embarrassed that she had failed to notice my still nakedness and decided to say no more.

I leave with a slight limp, my lace pants riding up my backside the way that only posh pants do.

I booked in for next years.

I walk to the car, chanting “I love smears….”

If you like what you read, and want to read more (not all about smears) please either sign up for email updates (over there on the right) or like me on facebook http://www.facebook.com/Northernmum or say hi on twitter @janeblackmore




  1. January 17, 2013 / 2:01 pm

    Oh. My. Goodness. Poor you, Clever you. Brave you. I’ve never heard or seen so many alternative words for the lady garden. I’ll tweet you my gynae experience post and you can have a laugh at that and at my expense and let your pelvic floor wet your lace knickers 😉

  2. January 17, 2013 / 3:27 pm

    Oh my word – all sorts of wrongness and over sharing.
    I imagine this will be one of your most popular posts – EVER!

  3. Thursa Wilde
    January 17, 2013 / 3:46 pm

    Lady Garden! Magnificent! 🙂

  4. January 17, 2013 / 4:02 pm

    Heh heh – that’s brilliant! Very funny indeed. ‘What Every Woman Needs to Know About a Smear Test But Was Afraid to Ask …’. 🙂

  5. January 17, 2013 / 5:30 pm

    Oh my… Princess Castle!
    Love this post, fell off my chair laughing x

  6. Alison
    January 17, 2013 / 8:16 pm

    No word of a lie, when I was having my most recent one, the nurse’s “small talk” at the *critical* moment, was “so you’ve got children then” all whilst looking at me quizzically. I was mortified!

  7. January 17, 2013 / 10:11 pm

    Great post had my flinching and squirming, knowing I should look away but I couldn’t. I once gave the doc a sparkly surprise when going for a smear. I had use a glitter bath bomb the night before and that glitter does not come off easily…

  8. January 17, 2013 / 10:42 pm

    Crying With laughter – I loved this. Something that we all hate made funny. It’s not funny though – and I’m glad you take the time to ‘stiff upper lip’ (no pun intended) and go do what needs to be done!

    The worst one I had was an old nurse who after ramming the metal doooby-whatsit into my Minnie-moo several times said loudly ‘oh dear, we are not relaxed are we dear? Not relaxed at all!’ Then proceeded to slap my thighs in an attempt to bring on relaxation.


  9. January 17, 2013 / 11:23 pm

    Until recently I was a junior doctor in gynae, and I can say I never looked at anyone’s clothes on the floor/chair. I have no idea whether people folded them nicely or wore nice pants. It’s nice that you did, but your doctor probably didn’t notice!

    I can’t believe they used a metal one! That is just cruel. I’ve only ever used plastic ones. And I was once told, if ever you have to use a metal one, warm it up a few minutes beforehand.

    Also, wittering on at you whilst still in a state of undress – not good! You step outside the curtains, let the patient get dressed, then sit on the chairs and continue the conversation.

    I also hate the small talk, though I’m never sure whether patients would prefer smalltalk or potentially awkward silence. I tend to waffle on about what I’m about to do while I’m getting the things ready (“I know it sounds silly but the more relaxed you can be, the easier and less uncomfortable it is” that kind of thing) – would you prefer that to small talk?

    I have to confess I am a terrible hypocrite and despite telling people regularly to get their smears I have not yet had mine. Sadly getting a practice nurse appointment is not terribly compatible with the timetable of a junior doctor. That will be my excuse for another few weeks anyway.

  10. January 17, 2013 / 11:24 pm

    You’ve made my day. I must book mine! still laughing at the smelly Kelly rhyme and DO come and say hi when in Cornwall :))

  11. January 17, 2013 / 11:42 pm

    Hilarious post Jane, nearly spat wine across the keyboard! I don’t think anyone else could tell a clacker story quite like you do 🙂

  12. January 17, 2013 / 11:55 pm

    Well I am ashamed to say that my foofy (many other names of which I have shared with you else where) was recently seen by the nurse on a regular basis for quite a while after birth and so it became my mission to make it fun for both of us… I must say she quite enjoyed the heart shaped vajazzle and I’m struggling to find a better way of presenting it next time I am due for a smear… **Thinks hard** (not in that way)… suggestions welcome!

  13. January 18, 2013 / 7:48 am

    Oh I am so with you – I hate smears – Little A’s birth was a traumatic one and so I avoided having a smear for nearly two years – it was okay in the end but they are so uncomfortable and intrusive!

  14. Jane Willis
    January 18, 2013 / 8:26 am

    That’s what i like to see. No beating about the bush…..

  15. January 18, 2013 / 9:21 am

    This is a brilliant piece of observational comedy. I too have to have yearly smears and this time asked how long I have to go back so often, TEN years! As you say though, much more favourable than cervical cancer. ‘Love bug’ 😀

  16. January 18, 2013 / 9:30 am

    Ha! Love this post! No harm in some over sharing, hate smears! People pay alot of money for an ice cold dildo ya’know! Lol 😛 x

  17. January 18, 2013 / 9:46 am

    I just read the heading and the author and knew I would die laughing – you didn’t disappoint! Jane I hope you are not seriously thinking of coming to Cornwall and not popping into say Hello, kids would love some time on the farm and I make a mean coffee!

    • northernmum
      January 21, 2013 / 3:21 pm

      Marvellous but tea please x

  18. January 18, 2013 / 10:11 pm

    And there was me hoping for advice on how to prepare for the next one. Wear best knickers and …

    • northernmum
      January 21, 2013 / 9:58 am

      ….lay quietly

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