I was raised in what was then a rural northern Virginia suburb of Washington, DC. The pediatrician I went to was Dr. Matthews. He had his office in what was also his house. It had a large waiting area with a reception desk and then 3 exam rooms. The exam rooms were large when compared to today’s modern rooms. They each had a scale and a desk for the doctor to sit and write notes. I saw Dr. Matthews until I turned 16 in 1984. He was likely mid to late 60’s when I stopped seeing him. He had been well established as one of the more popular pediatricians in the local area by the time I started visiting him. My earliest memory is of my visit for my kindergarten physical. I would have been 5 and this would have been 1973. Like all my memories of visits to Dr. Matthews I remember having a bared hiney. In fact up until my 14th birthday I don’t remember a visit where I didn’t have a bared hiney. The question wasn’t if my bared hiney would be on display, but how many times it would be on display.
On this particular visit at 5 years old, I remember being told to strip to my underpants and then being weighed. I was then taken to the exam table and had my blood pressure and pulse taken. The nurse would then place the BP cuff back on the counter space off the end of the table and lift a towel that covered a metal tray. That metal tray up until my 14th birthday always had a stubby bulbed thermometer and what looked like a tube of toothpaste. This day I remember watching the nurse shake down the thermometer and then open the tube. She would squeeze the contents of the tube across the top half of the thermometer. She then would come towards the exam table and utter words heard many times on my visits to Dr. Matthew’s. “Okay John, I need you to take your underpants down for me.” I slid down my little boy undies and was then instructed to lay on my tummy. Now at this age I knew of no other way of having your temperature taken, so I was not yet to the age that I was embarrassed to have my bare hiney on display for this procedure. My little cheeks were parted and my little hiney hole penetrated by the well lubed glass and metal rod. I laid there with my bared hiney on display with thermometer poking up between my cheeks for 5 minutes. The thermometer was then removed and I could feel all the leftover lube as I was instructed pull up my underpants and sit and wait for Dr. Matthews.
Dr. Matthews would then enter after a few minutes of sitting on the table and feeling the lube squish around between my cheeks. He did all the usual checks of my eyes, nose, ears and throat. Then the stethoscope was used to listen to my heart and breathing. Then he used his little hammer to test my reflexes. Next came the order “Okay John, I need you to take your underpants down for me.” This time I was instructed to lay on my back. Dr. Matthews then examined my little boy penis and checked for a hernia. I was then asked to turnover and display my bared hiney. Dr. Matthews then spread my cheeks and looked at my well lubed and I am sure glistening hiney hole. He would not penetrate it at such a young age but he did touch it and ask me to push like I was pooping. Finally I was able to pull up my underpants and asked to hop down off the table so Dr. Matthews could check my spine. Then it was back up on the table to wait.
I watched as Dr. Matthews went across the room and spoke with the nurse before he started preparing something which at 5 I was unable to identify. Then he placed it down and began preparing another of the same things. Then the nurse set the metal tray at the end of the table. She removed the towel and my eyes were fixated on the needle that was on the tray and then I saw Dr. Matthews walking back toward the table carrying a second needle. As he approached he said “Okay John, I need you to take your underpants down for me.” I began to cry as I had now put it together in my 5 year old head. Those 2 needles were going to be injected into my bare hiney. I did not resist but I was crying too hard to comply. My grandmom and the nurse positioned me on my tummy and the nurse pulled my underpants down to my ankles. My bare hiney was on display for the 3rd time, but this time I wanted to cover it up. The nurse held my ankles and my grandmom my arms as I first felt Dr. Matthews poke my left cheek with his fingers, then I felt the cold rub of alcohol and finally the intense pain of my 5 year old hiney being jabbed by the needle. I screamed as I was jabbed and cried out as the medicine was injected. Then the procedure was repeated on my right cheek. I was now bawling so hard I couldn’t catch my breath. I felt the nurse apply a band aid to each of my sore little cheeks. I just laid there and cried for about 5 minutes, while I started to compose myself towards the end I began asking “Why’d you put them in my hiney?” Dr. Matthews responded “Shots work best for little boys if they get them in their hineys.” It was words that would be said to me many times on visits to Dr. Matthews.
I finally composed myself enough to get dressed and exit to the waiting room. I stood their while my grandmom paid the bill rubbing my sore cheeks and sobbing. I am sure I was making nervous the waiting patients. I felt those shots every time I sat down for the remainder of that day and the next. There are many more bared hiney memories to come. Please feel free to comment and post your own bare hiney pediatrician memories.