You read it right, I got shot. But in a good way!
Today I got my first dose of HPV vaccine. According to WIkipedia, "The human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine may prevent infection with certain species of human papillomavirus associated with the development of cervical cancer, genital warts, and some less common cancers."
My mom is such a dear for setting me up for an appointment with another OB who's a cousin of hers, making her my distant aunt (plus wedding sponsor or ninang sa kasal). I only found out about the appointment this morning when my mom texted me about it.
I have to admit, although I'm good at giving shots I'm not a fan of getting them myself. No siree. So you betcha I was scared shitless.
The appointment was at 2:30 so I left home at 2. I could have been on time if I hadn't lost my way, but when I got to the clinic I still had to wait 10 minutes for my turn.
The doctor is a relative so it was expected that she would make small talk about my family. "How's your daughter? Where are you staying now? Where's your husband?" That sort of thing.
As I watched her wash her hands and prepare the vaccine I felt like my heart was going to burst out of my chest. She told me to stand next to her and turn sideways. I stood up, and because I wanted the shot to be on my left upper arm (left deltoid) that's what I showed her. She lifted up my sleeve and there was no way in the world I was going to look now. She asked me how I was feeling and I told her the truth--I was scared, and that my sister told me it would hurt real bad. Someone also told me my entire arm would go numb. So anyway, the doctor positioned herself and the syringe, told me to relax and breathe through the mouth, and then sloooowly inserted the needle into my flesh. She told me again to relax because she felt a little resistance but I had no idea what she was talking about because my head is telling me that I was relaxed. I just don't know if my body feels otherwise.
The entire process took about 2 to three minutes because she injected the vaccine very slowly and massaged my deltoid in between pushes. But to be honest, it didn't go as bad as I expected. I guess partly that was because it made my arm numb for a while keeping me from feeling anything and the C-section that I had definitely raised the bar for pain.
Five minutes into my post-vaccination conversation I could already feel the real deal. The doc kept reminding me to move my left arm around to make the drug spread faster throughout my body, but man it was work. Right now my arm still feels twice as heavy and the injection site still has this dull cramp and I can't lift it higher than 90 degrees.
Exaggeration isn't my thing; I'm telling you the whole truth here. Getting this shot HURTS but I knew I had to get it if I want protection from certain diseases including CERVICAL CANCER.
I also learned that May is Cervical Awareness Month which I guess explains why the doctor told me that the vaccine's on a promo. I got a vaccination card, a special pink band aid, and a pink charm bracelet for me to add the free charms whenever I get a dose. It's so cute, girly and hardly looks like a vaccination due date reminder. It could be an everyday accessory.
I'm dreading my next appointment which is due next month (yes, already!!!) but you know what, it'll pass. And this vaccine gives me lifetime protection so it's definitely a go.
Vaccinated yet? Visit your OB-GYN now and ask about the HPV vac. It's one of the things that are worth the pain. :)