Show and tell

Here's another little snippet of my book, Baby F(h)at: Adventures in Motherhood, Weight Loss, and Trying to Stay Sane." “Would you like a cloth to cover your eyes?”

I take one look at the huge, white, and very scary MRI machine I’m about to get rolled into and smile at the tech. “Um, yes please. That and the Valium I popped this morning should do the trick.”

“Hey wait,” I blurt out in a mini panic attack. “I didn’t wear any jewelry but forgot to tell whoever booked my appointment that I have an IUD. It’s made of copper and my husband was a little more than concerned this morning.”

She takes a look at a chart, confirms my implant is on the safe list and gets back to business.

Within minutes I’m on my back with a cloth to help me pretend I am not claustrophobic and a strap placed over my forehead to keep my from fidgeting (therefore canceling out the positive effects of the cloth) and I’m in.

“Ok, the first scan will take 30 seconds.” The tech’s voice floats over the headphones they’ve provided me with, which is pumping in a local Spanish station. I resign myself to pretending I don’t want to start screaming and focus in on Enrigue Iglesias’ voice.

I’m in this damned contraption on my doctor’s orders. Since it’s been four years since the MRI that discovered my pituitary tumor, it’s past due for a check up to verify size and determine a proper course of action. My medications aren’t working right now, so I wasn’t going to argue the science fiction portion of the medical exams.

The music is interrupted by the tech’s voice again. “This next scan will take five minutes.”

I mumble back an “O.K.” and open my eyes to peek down at my feet. I can see just the teensiest bit of the outside world, and that’s enough to keep my sane. After a deep sigh, I close my eyes again and try focus in on the music again.

Think about something…anything other than being claustrophobic! Damn it…I just thought about being claustrophobic. Shit! Okay, how about chocolate! Ben & Jerry’s! Buttercup grabbing my face this morning and firmly saying,” Mama can’t take down the Christmas tree. It’s preeety.” My book. The scale not cooperating. Which takes me right back to why I’m back in the MRI machine and being claustrophobic.

Damn it. What else can I focus on? Puppies? Kittens? The whole 45 minutes I’ve scored to myself without a child or husband demanding my attention? Yes, that’s good. This is me-time, which means I have to stop letting my thoughts buzz-kill the only nap I’m gonna get until Buttercup’s in college and The Husband learns how to load the dishwasher himself.

Deep breath in. Deep breath out. There…all better now.

In my Valium-induced happy state, I have already lost track of time. One song fades into the next, and I fade in and out of consciousness.

I wake to the God-like Tech’s voice in my ear again. “Okay, Pauline. This is the last scan. Just a few more minutes and you’re good to go.”

Cool beans. I open my eyes and peek at my feet again. Yep. Still there. And man, am I stoned. Five milligrams of Valium has definitely proven that I made the right choice. Just Saying No was probably a good bet for me and that it’s a good thing The Husband drove. I can barely keep my eyes open while the tech unstraps my head and helps me sit back up.

“You should have your results in about three days,” she tells me as I shuffle back into the waiting room to a vey bored Husband.

“I see your uterus made it out intact,” The Husband says with a smirk, referring to a very tiny IUD and the very large magnet I was just in. “Let’s get out of here and grab some lunch. You were in there forever.”


Blame it on the Valium, ‘cuz I am going to. We stopped at Chipotle for some burrito bowls and I went minimal on the rice, so I’m only kicking myself for the stop at Coldstone Creamery. It’s The Husband’s fault. The asshole has skinny genes which allow his ass to fit into skinny jeans no matter what he eats. I, however, got screwed when it came to that little DNA tid-bit.

“Don’t go crazy now,” he whispers in my ear as I drool over the menu. Right. He may as well have dragged an alcoholic into a bar and suggested a club soda. I choose some calorie laden concoction with strawberries, blueberries, and graham crackers and rationalize while I eat.

The doctor did say that nothing I am doing is working right now, didn’t she? And she did refer me to an endocrinologist to help solve the mystery of me, right? So really, ordering the healthier option (or just saying “no”) wouldn’t have done me any good, right?


Time to enjoy the day for what it is: An impromptu lunch and ice-cream date with The Husband.

I’ll worry about calories later.