Well, today I had my first Mammogram ever! I am 45 and should have had one 5 years ago but just never bothered to schedule it. I was not afraid to, just lazy really. My friends have been after me to get one and I know I needed to so this was the year! See, Wendy, you didn’t have to take me!
I made it for an early appointment so I could just do it and come home and work from home. My appointment was for 7:45 and I left at 7:00 in case there was traffic or buses. I got there early and checked in. I wasn’t nervous at all about this but I had to go to Leominster hospital to have it done and I guess just pulling into a hospital made me a tad bit anxious.
I checked in and went to the waiting room. It was filled with women waiting to have either a bone density test or Mammogram or both. The ladies were not happy about all of them being scheduled for the same time but, honestly, the room cleared out in about 5 minutes and I was the only one left waiting.
I could hear the technician talking to the woman who was before me as I was sitting right outside the room and I didn’t hear any crying or screaming or anything so I figured I’d be fine. My turn came and a woman named Roe told me to strip from the waist up and put on the gown with the ties in front in a little room with a curtain.
I noticed the room was really pleasant looking. It looked like new hard flooring and a very clean, but warm feeling room. I think it’s funny that I noticed the room was not intimidating at all. Maybe it was the lighting, but the room itself felt very comfortable.
I told Roe this was my first time and she explained what was going to happen and why. She was very nice and it wasn’t too awkward standing there with no shirt on while this woman placed your breast on a plate and adjusted it for the right angle. She does this every day, all day and it just seemed to her like no big deal. She wasn’t at all uncomfortable so it made me more comfortable with the process.
Basically, this is what it looks like: (Not real people)
It’s not really any worse than having a Pap Smear, is it?
It was a little uncomfortable, but I wouldn’t say it hurt. The process is super quick so any discomfort I felt only lasted a second or two. I had to be in a few awkward angles; I had to lean forward and grab the bar with my hand. sort of like this. Note: This is NOT me:
She did tell me as we were taking the pictures that I should have come 5 years ago (I know) and that she’ll see me next year, right? Early detection is key.
The whole process took maybe 15 minutes and she told me that with this being my first time I could be called back for more pictures. She told me not to freak out if I am, it’s simply to get more. Since they don’t have anything to compare this test with they may have to look again. She said if they do call me back it would probably be by Friday.So, now I wait to see if they need more pictures, and if not, for the results to come back.
I know other women have had different experiences; this was simply mine.
All in all, the whole procedure was not embarrassing, painful or dreadful. You are surrounded by all women doing the same thing and the technicians were professionals with a nice personality. They know it isn’t fun and try and make it as pleasant as possible and get you in and out.
I went and saw my Personal trainer, Steve, tonight too, but I think I’ll wait and tell you all about that tomorrow!
Question of the day: Have you had a Mammogram? What was your experience like?