Tuesday Talk: 2 vaccines, 3 teeth filled, 7 tubes of blood….and a partridge in a pear tree?


Welcome to the Peace Corps medical clearance process!

Needles, needles everywhere.

And paperwork.

About a month ago Alex and I started the process of getting dental clearance for Peace Corps. I suppose they want to make sure we don’t have any scary jagged teeth or mouth diseases before we go, as we will have limited access to quality dental care while in Mozambique. For me, this process meant getting my first three fillings…ever! It was kind of sad.I really thought I was through the woods with cavity and filling risk, and was sure I was going to live the rest of my life without one. I was feeling quite triumphant about it, in fact. Sad news for me. Sad news for my jaw too, which doesn’t like to go numb with novocaine, required approximately 6 shots, and was then pathetically sore for a week.

After completing the slew of dental paperwork, getting x-rays, having fillings and so on and so forth, we received our bulky digital packet of paperwork for medical clearance. Dental and medical clearance is kind of the next big thing in our Peace Corps pre-departure process. Besides potential war, disease outbreaks, and political uprising, failure to get medical or dental clearance is one of the things that could delay or jeopardize our departure for Peace Corps.

Yesterday I visited my local doc, who was amazingly diligent about my paperwork. Getting this paperwork done meant taking 7 vials of blood out of my body for various tests, injecting me with a couple of vaccines, and slapping a spiderman bandaid on my arm before sending me on my way.

This process has been pretty easy and efficient for me so far, but I definitely haven’t seen so many needles in a while!

Poke, stab, jab go the doctors.

“You’re doing great,” they say.


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