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Nurse Judy: “Going Bra-less”

Back in the day I was not a women’s libber. I would not have been caught dead at a “Burn the Bra” rally.

I was a proper young lady who really enjoyed being a girl.

Maybe I should give some credit to my idiotic alter ego, Nurse Judy, who would have shuddered at any action that might curtail her idea of fashion.

I hate giving her any credit, however, since she takes so much credit for herself.

Anyhow, I grew up, a straight-laced, church-going female who wore all the appropriate undergarments of the day, even though I was as skinny as a rail. Suddenly I’m having second thoughts.

Saturday I worked at Downtown Marketplace manning the Tallahassee Writer’s Association booth. I sat on a backless stool when there were no customers. I had to bend and carry when we were loading up the books, taking down the tables and tent.

My back began aching so badly, it brought tears to my eyes as I struggled to walk the few blocks to my car. Once home, I disrobed, put on a gown and cover-up and took an ibuprofen. In a very short time, my back began to feel better.

“That ibuprofen is a miracle drug,” I thought to myself, before drifting off to peaceful sleep. With this new knowledge in my brain arsenal, I took another pill before starting off to play Bingo the next afternoon.

It didn’t help at all.

As I sat there playing my favorite game, my back was giving me torture. I kept reaching up under my shirt in the back, trying to find a comfortable spot for my bra. I tried loosening the shoulder straps. All these maneuvers were carried on while trying to keep up with daubing my bingo papers.

I couldn’t wait for the torture to be over and was praying for folks to call “Bingo!” quickly to release me from my pain. It should not surprise you that I won nothing that night but was delighted when it ended. This time I did not wait to get home to begin disrobing.

Once in the car I unhooked the offending bra and pulled it out through my sleeve holes. It gave relief, but not complete relief. It did present a new problem. I could not do my errands on the way home. I was not flexible enough to rethread that bra back through the sleeves to replace it, and the idea of walking into a place of business looking like a cartoon-portrayed old woman with droopy appendages was abhorrent to me.

Therefore, I went straight home, got ready for bed and lay down. Ahhhhhh…sweet relief. Today I sit here in my nightshirt, typing my story, and my back is giving me fits. Maybe the secret cure is to take an aspirin, leave off the bra and lay down on a nice soft bed or couch.

That is a lifestyle that is appealing, but would be hard to maintain for long.

I may call my doctor, but I’m just not sure how to introduce the subject to her. If I start off with the bra she may send me to a lingerie shop. If I start with the drugs she may send me to rehab. If I start off with the bed, she may just call me lazy and send me home.

I sit here doing nothing. Nurse Judy has had enough. She glares at me.

“Just call the doctor and say you have a backache!”

That does sound simple. Maybe I’ll try it.

On the other hand I‘d have to go braless. How humiliating!

More later,


By Judy Conlin