For about thirty minutes last week my kissing life flashed before my eyes.
I’ve been making out with some people lately. Maybe other things too with some of them, but let’s focus for a moment on the making out. At this point in my life, if you called me a kissing slut I probably wouldn’t correct you. This is one of the ways, of course, in which my life kicks major ass.
One other way is that my health has been much better than usual for the past six weeks or so, allowing me to be out of bed and into people’s faces more. Until last week, when some acute infection brutally slapped my throat with a pus cactus. Which is why I was sitting on an examination table with a short, bright-eyed man chafing my hands, about to peer at my tonsils.
“Are your hands always so cold?” He asked me.
“Yes.” Sometimes it’s rather convenient. You can do ice play without running to the kitchen.
“Did you walk here? Is that why they’re cold?”
“No. They’re just cold.” He took out a tongue depressor and looked into my throat.
“Mono,” he said. “Have you ever had mono?”
“When I was 18.”
“This looks like mono. Do you have a boyfriend?”
“No.” The literal truth.
“Good, because if you have mono you can’t be intimate. We’ll do a quick test right now.” Having had mono, I knew that kissing fell under this intimacy umbrella. Not only that, but I knew that even though I’d felt remarkably well (for me) a week ago, I might have been contagious already for over a month.
As a friendly, frizzy-haired nurse came in and tried to poke my finger for a blood sample, also expressing dismay at my cold hands because it was harder to squeeze enough blood out, I thought about what mono would mean for me right now. I would have to contact all my recent makeout partners and tell them I might have gotten them sick. I would possibly have to watch some of them grow sick and miserable for a long while, knowing I and my slutty, slutty lips were responsible. Meanwhile, I myself would be sick and miserable and cease to enjoy my recent run of good health. Also, my spleen would be enormous.
Then it dawned on me, this must be what it’s like to have an STI.
The nurse returned fifteen minutes later telling me we hadn’t gotten enough blood, so she stabbed another finger as I wondered how long having mono would mean going without making out with any sexy people.
I was playing pokemon on my DS but really composing a form email to warn people of my infectious face when she announced that the test was negative. My doctor returned and told me he thought it would be, and prescribed me antibiotics for my bacterial throat infection.
It’s clearing up.
But I almost had a not-quite-STI, and it was scary. Also, I couldn’t kiss the people I wanted to kiss on Saturday because, well, throat infection. But everyone’s spleens remain comfortably normal-sized for the time being.
But if it had been mono– and certainly if I had an honest-to-goodness STI– I know I would have sucked it up and told people and refrained from spreading the contagion further, however uncomfortable or inconvenient it was. There was never any question. Period. My fun is not worth anyone’s illness.
Which reminds me: April is actual-STI awareness month! Let’s all get tested and stuff.