After putting it off for the last couple of years because of Covid and moving, and my anxiety around doctors and fearing bad news, I have finally begun catching up with my well appointments. I ALWAYS make my HIV care appointments and am 100% adherent to my meds, but I have fallen behind with other aspects of my health.
Last week I had my first Pap smear in over two years. I loathe Pap smears. When I was around 19 or 20 I had received an abnormal Pap smear and was told I had cervical dysplasia. That result led to me having a Pap smear done every 6 months for 2 years or so along with biopsies. When I got pregnant with my daughter and had one done, I found out that it had cleared on its own and I had no issues. That doesn’t stop the fear and anxiety I feel around having them done though. But I pushed through and made the appointment and thankfully this new doctor was very nice and made me feel comfortable for the first time honestly.
I also had my very first visit with a primary care doctor and I have a dentist appointment next week which is another thing I fear. I didn’t go to the dentist for probably around 10 years. A year before Covid I finally went. Bad teeth and gums run in my family. My teeth aren't the best and I definitely need braces. I am scared shitless of doing it, but I know I have to and so I'm sucking it up and hoping for the best. I also have a gastroenterology appointment in June.
If you're like me and you've been putting it off for whatever reason, take this as your sign to start making those appointments and put your health in top priority. I'm trying to combat my fear by telling myself finding out earlier about anything is always better. We have to stop waiting until something is wrong to go to the doctor. We as women go through so much and do so much for everyone around us. We have to take care of ourselves too. I don't just want to be alive, I want to feel strong and well while I'm here. Make your appointments ladies! You got this!