The Truth About IUDs
Sometimes I can make some very rash decisions. So when my doctor was on vacation and her replacement was a really sweet young new lady doctor who spent thirty minutes trying to convince me to switch off the pill and get an IUD I basically just said “ok,” and booked an appointment for later that week.
Now don’t you stress, I did spend a fair amount of time (some) looking into the IUD and what it would do to the state of my vagina, and found the answers to be relatively positive, so I thought this is to be a fabulous new plan.
I checked in with my girls, turns out a lot of ladies have them, and every single one told me how amazing it was. Word, I thought, this is going to be easy. So I called up the office and confirmed my appointment. She suggested a Wednesday afternoon at 3 p.m.
“Cool,” I said, “But I have to work at 4 p.m. is this going to be a problem?”
“No, no,” the nurse said, “You’ll be totally fine, we’ll just give you a few Advil. It’s really quick.”
And that was that.
Tune into the night before the IUD insertion. Out with some friends from work I tell them about my slight sense of impending doom towards having a foreign object forced inside my vagina. The more people’s (ahem, male) faces look horrified the more I turn to my pal, whiskey. Anyways by the end of the night I was quite drunk but feeling pretty good about my decision.
I wake up the next day in a state of pure horror. My eyelids seem to be glued shut. My mouth is so dry that only an entire lake would be enough to quench this thirst. Fuck. I try and eat, and immediately throw up. Oh well, I think, this is fine. It’s all fine. EVERYTHING IS FINE.
By the time I have to go to the appointment I may slightly resemble a human being again, but that’s thanks to the help of makeup and a hair straightener so it’s hard to be sure. All I have to do is make it through this IUD appointment and then work and everything will be fine and I can get back to my bed. Life is good...everything is ok.
Getting to the doctor’s office was another issue, but by the time I get there I'm late and she rushes me into this room where she makes me strip down to nothing and lay spread eagle on a table. No problem, I have little to no shame on a good day, so at this point I'm not concerned with some lady looking at my insides, I’m just trying not to throw up everywhere. You can do this...just keep swimming...focus on the ceiling, my brain is doing everything humanly possible to survive these few seconds of pure torture.
“We’re going to start with a little test,” she says, smiling, with a giant headlamp on her forehead that nearly blinded me, “we’re going to put this inside you and make sure your body can accept the IUD. It will be really fast, and then we’ll put the actual IUD in,” she says, smiling like this is the best day of her entire life, and then she turns around and grabs this four foot pole that’s apparently going into my vagina.
“UH WHAT THE F-” I start to yell.
“Lie down Kate, lie down,” she says in what she assumes is a soothing voice, “it’ll be really quick.” And then she basically pierces my insides and the largest waves of cramps I have ever experienced in my entire life roll over my body and I actually think I have just been stabbed to death and can’t it just be OVER.
“Ok, great,” she says, smiling with a pole the size of my entire body in her hand, the headlamp blinding my retina. “Now just this teeny tiny thing,” she says pointing to the IUD which is actually strangely small, “and you’ll be good for THREE YEARS.” She really stresses the three years part, saying it in some strange, almost slow motion voice. I think she thinks this will keep me from dying, and or running away with no pants on into the hallway.
“Er…” I say, “I...uh...it hurts, like, REALLY bad.”
“Of course,” she laughs. “It’s a foreign object entering your body!” and proceeds to push me to a flat position.
Ok. This is going to be quick. It won’t be bad, I think to myself, staring at the ceiling. And then probably the most pain I’ve ever had in my entire life hits my body and I literally sit straight up as she’s saying, “Ok...done!” and looks with me with a face of sheer joy as I say, “I think I’m going to be sick-” and proceed to throw up in her face.
In her FACE.
We are both so surprised neither of us can really move, and then she uses her hand to sweep the vomit from her eyes and says, “oh...ok….” and I cannot even move because I’m actually going to die in this office with a newly placed foreign object in my vagina.
She gets a garbage can and hands it to me just as I begin the process of throwing up again, and I’m crying and snot is dripping down my face and she’s trying to wash the barf off her face. “I’m SORRY!” I yell, and as I continue to throw up, my hands give up on their duty of holding the bin and it slips from my hands, hits the floor at an aggressive speed, which sends the vomit flying out of the bin and all over the ceiling. And the doctor. And me.
By this point I know it’s over and I’m going to die and I’m crying on the bed in a ball screaming, “IS IT SUPPOSED TO BE LIKE THIS?” and she’s starting to freak out saying, “well I’ve only done four but I haven’t seen anyone react like this…” and I’m glaring at her like YOU KIDDING ME THIS WAS YOUR IDEA.
"I was just one of your TEST SUBJECTS?!?" I yell, crying even more.
So she books an ultrasound, helps me into one of those gowns with the open back (why is that a thing?) and I actually crawl on my hands and knees into the ultrasound room. Which is in the next room, but still. She goes to clean up and leaves me with the technician, this young guy, who's looking at me very suspiciously. As soon as the doctor leaves the room to go get washed up he looks at me square in my bloodshot eyes and goes, “are you hungover?”
I pause. “What does that have to do with anything?”
“You’re not supposed to get black out wasted the night before you get an IUD!” he says, all judgey like he knows what it’s like to have mysterious objects placed in his person.
“I haven’t been “black out" since I was nineteen, sir!” I give as my only explanation.
He checks me over while I cry, somewhat silently but not really, and says, “You’re fine. Absolutely fine. You’re going to have cramps for the next 24 hours but you’ve made this way worse by being hungover just so you know.”
“YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT IT’S LIKE,” I yell as I get on the ground again and prepare to crawl to the room where all my clothes covered with barf are. He hands me an adult diaper. I glare at him, but hey, I'm all about new things and so I put it on. And immediately get on the floor and being crawling away. I pause at the door, with my butt in the air, adult diaper firmly in place and turn to face him, “But you won’t tell the doctor I was hungover right?”
And so, yeah. That was what it was like when I got my IUD inserted.