13. I GOT AN S.T.I. FROM A BRAZILIAN WAX
“About a month after I got a particularly bloody, painful Brazilian wax from an upscale salon in Manhattan, I noticed little bumps on my bikini line/vulva area. Two of them were in a little cluster, and a few others were more sparse. They basically looked like [GROSSNESS ALERT] shiny bumps with a dimple in the middles and a waxy white core. As many single-and-dating women would upon discovering something like this, I freaked out and had an anxiety attack at work. Right then and there, I made an emergency appointment with my gyno and tore out of work to get there. En route, stuck in traffic, I cried in the cab and made all of the normal promises you make when you are afraid that something really bad is happening. I’ll never have unprotected sex again if this turns out not to be herpes. I’ll never have sex again. I’ll become whatever the Jewish version of a nun is. I’ll sacrifice my firstborn to the great god Cthulhu if this is just an ingrown hair.
After holding back tears in the waiting room for what felt like ages, I finally got into the exam room and changed. I sat there teary-eyed with smeared makeup, in my flimsy gown and sad, mismatched socks, until finally a nurse practitioner came in. She looked younger than me. It took her two seconds to diagnose the bumps.
‘Yeah, I doubt this is herpes. It doesn’t look like herpes, and you’d be in a lot of pain. Do you work with children?’
‘Mostly kids get this. Looking at it, I’m pretty sure it’s molluscum contagiosum. Just leave it alone and it’ll run its course.’ I was still pretty upset, and asked her what the normal reaction was after diagnosis. She told me that most people are just relieved that it’s not herpes….
However it plays out, once this nightmare is over, the guys I date had better get used to a full bush, since I’m never getting a wax ever, ever again.”