When I lead you into the exam room, you see it… over there….
The Exam Table; the altar of the medical world.
I hand you a clean (but ugly) cotton hospital gown and ask you to undress and put it on, open in the back. I leave the room and you undress, tossing your street clothes on the chair by the desk, then put the gown on. Not knowing what to do next, you just stand there, so just wait until I come back into the room.
I come back in and you’re standing there beside the table, looking so nervous. I smile sweetly, then open a drawer next to your leg, pull out a Chux pad, flap it open, then spread it neatly onto the bottom of the table, where your bottom will go.
I lean down and pull the step stool part of the table out so you can climb up and sit on it for me.
“Please sit here,” and I watch you climb up, your bottom hanging out the back of the un-tied gown. I pretend not to see your butt, or your squirming nervously on the table.
I do all my Nursie things, taking your vitals and charting them, then set things up for the practitioner to do her work.
I pull the stirrups out, making sure they are wide enough apart for your exam.
After all of that is done, before I go get the practitioner, I set up the Pap tray: gloves (sterile and non-sterile… latex and nitrile), long q-tips, sterile gel, clamps if needed, a pregnancy test…
And varying sizes of speculums.
Now everything is ready for your exam.