Saturday, March 12, 2011

Where Everybody Knows Your Name

As I mentioned in my last post about my first trip to the OB/GYN, I was a bit apprehensive when I ran into a nurse whom I knew as a child.  There was good reason for my anxiety.  We live in a small town.  There are many positives to living in a small town.  The traffic is not bad.  The line at the grocery store is never too long.  People are friendly.  My father was an elected official for quite some time and my mother has been in the real estate business for 30+ years.  I have a lot of friends and connections, which boded well for me when I sought a job after college and now fundraising in my current non-profit position.  However, when you want to have any secrets, a small town is not ideal.

I learned this lesson several years ago when I went to a local pharmacy to purchase a pregnancy test.  The lady at the check out counter went to church with my family.  On Sunday, she cornered my Mom and asked her when I was due.  Mom told the lady she had no idea what she was talking about.  The woman backtracked and made some excuse that she thought maybe I was going to have a baby, but maybe she heard wrong or was thinking of the wrong person.  At any rate, Mom asked me about it and I had some 'splainin to do. It wasn't that I didn't want my Mom to know - I just wanted to be the one to tell her if it ever did happen.

Since that time, rather than deal with similar aftermath, I've taken to stalking pharmacies to figure out when strangers worked.  I've gone to great lengths to try to maintain some dignity in the process. Once, I had the test in my hand in the check out line when there must've been a shift change and the Wonderful-Stranger-Check-Out-Girl left and the previously mentioned I-Can't-Keep-My-Mouth-Shut-Lady took over.  I stashed that pregnancy test right in with the M&M's at the checkout lane and promptly left. Now that's what I call maintaining dignity....


  1. maybe ordering them online is a better (and more anonymous) option? If it comes in a box from, no-one will suspect what's in it, not even if you're mail(wo)man used to be your next door neighbor!

  2. Wow! I can relate! I was at my family reunion last fall and a relative came up and announced loudly, "I guess I will be seeing you next week and Dr. H's office!" Apparently she had been hired as their receptionist and saw me on the patient list for the following week. Ugh!