Up Yours: Colonoscopy Highlights

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                                July 27, 2017

                 

I had procrastinated more than a frantic income tax filer looking at his empty forms on April 15. There’s just something about having someone stick something up your butt that is a little uncomfortable to my personal space! And so instead of waiting ten years since my last venture into Wonderland it had been almost twelve years since I shook hands with my gastroenterologist! As he extended his hand to me I hesitated for a moment. I had memories of a story my dad has told me several times of an equine veterinarian back in Kentucky who always walked around with a cigar in his mouth. Some men had called him about a horse that was having problems. The horse doctor knew right away that the animal was just plugged up…in other words, constipated… and he reached his hand “up there”, helped the horse get cleared out, and then, with the same hand, took his cigar out of his mouth to say a few things before sticking it back in his mouth. The men who needed his assistance promptly went around to the side of the barn and threw up.

And so with that memorable story in my mind I hesitated for a moment before shaking hands. His right hand looked clean so I shook it!

When we leave on vacation we prep for it by packing our suitcase. For a colonoscopy I had to “unpack.” 128 ounces of Powerade with a bottle of powdered laxative called Miralax. Their parade down to my inners was preceded by taking four pills that must have been like “scouts” going ahead of the fluid army to scope out the territory.

Being a smart and wise person I had bought a pack of ultra gentle toilet paper earlier that day!

Before the scout pills and the fluid army began their assault, I had spent the previous day abstaining from pretty much anything that I would classify as normal food. Carol fixed a bowl of lime jello, which I stared at as it sat in the refrigerator. It is still sitting there in the refrigerator, firmly anchored away from my interest. I had a cup of chicken broth and pretended I was sipping won ton soup…minus the won ton! Always being a cream and sugar coffee person I drank two cups of coffee that morning…black! Just about everything in our refrigerator and freezer had received amnesty from being consumed by me! I could hear the package of Nathan’s hot dogs mocking me: “You’re no Joey Chestnut, that’s for sure!”

And then the first wave of the Powerade force marched through me with a vengeance. I played Word With Friends as I awaited the next assault.

A 4 A.M. initiative was planned for the second wave of Powerade infusion! The last remnants of whatever the assault fluid ounces were meant to clear out finally gave up the ghost. By 7:30 A.M. I was thanking God for the invention of ultra gentle TP! Feeling light on my feet we walked out to the car to make the journey.

As we entered the office of the gastroenterologist I noticed that they had a little merchandise section…kind of like Cracker Barrel, but without the smell of bacon in the air…with various memorabilia to buy to help you remember the experience. A tee shirt with the words “Up Yours!” was prominently displayed. A beer mug with “Bottom’s Up!” didn’t seem to be a threat to disappear from the shelf. I like jigsaw puzzles, but the one of the GI tract did not peak my interest! Neither was the for sale DVD on “The Inner Workings of a Colonoscopy!”

You can only window shop for so long in a place such as that, and when I was called to come on back to one of the waiting rooms I breathed a sigh of relief. And then they gave me presents! A sweet little pair of shorts with an opening in the back. For some odd reason it made me think of that classic movie, Rear Window! They also gave me a nice pair of “no slip” socks that I decided I didn’t need. But, hey! Our wedding anniversary was just two days away so I had Carol’s present taken care of! Awesome!

And then they rolled me back, gave me an awesome anesthetic that put me out in fifteen seconds. Before I knew it I was back in my waiting room and it “was all behind me!” I had made it!

But (one “t”) now for the most important and the only serious part of the adventure! The doctor discovered a good size polyp in my colon. Because of that I’ll need to have another colonoscopy in two years, and he said this. “It was pre-cancerous! In another five to six years, if you hadn’t taken car of this, you’d be looking at colon cancer!”

So in July of 2019 I’ll gladly welcome another invasion of “Powerade and friends”, drink black coffee, stare at lime jello, and put another sweet little pair of shorts on…and I’ll consider myself blessed!

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