Friday, July 17, 2009

I have been anally probed

And it wasn't by little green men who subsequently wanted to be taken to my leader. I experienced the joy of the colonoscopy. My mum got colon cancer in her mid forties, so now, ten years younger than she was, I have to get checked out. I have to admit I was scared. Not of the procedure, but of the results. I had been experiencing some other symptoms which I was foolish enough to look up online, and cancer runs in my family. Both parents and my younger brother have battled the big C. My dad is well outlasting the 2 years he was given a 10% chance of surviving. My mum keeps a notebook to keep track of all the cancers, surgeries, and chemos she has gone thru since Doctors tend not to believe she could still be alive.

The whole colonoscopy ordeal was relatively painless. No solid food for 36 hours beforehand, plus some hard core purgatives to clean out the system. That part wasn't exactly fun. You've never had diarrhea until you've downed a couple packages of Pico-Salax. I'm very serious when I say my pee was thicker than the dregs of my colon. Projectile poop! Had to make the trip to Belleville for the procedure. We planned on putting the boys in daycare, but Mars came down with something and was throwing up all night. Adding to the stress, he was sick again in the van on the way down, we were late enough that I didn't want to stop again for a bathroom break. A risky decision since I could feel the pressure building, and a simple fart would shoot out a cup of pale brown water.

First time to Belleville hospital. Their signage sucks big time, couldn't find where I was supposed to go, and very skillfully ignored by multiple desk people. Avoiding eye contact with someone standing over your desk while you stand up and walk away is an art form. Further adding to my tardiness and my stress levels.

Once I got where I was supposed to go it was smooth sailing. A few minutes in the waiting room, then into hospital gown, IV started, thumbed through a National Geographic from 1990, wheeled to the little colonoscopy room. Had to admire the giant probes hanging up. Marked along their length in centimeters. I think it is a sop to metric phobic people. If it was marked five feet, people would panic. But 150 cm... most of the old people who were also enjoying the procedure wouldn't clue into the length of the damn thing.

Got the oxygen, got the happy needle, got the general discomfort of a five foot implement shoved up my bum. There was a video I could watch, but I was pretty groggy from the anesthetic. I remember bits. Some acute discomfort at times, like a bad stomach cramp, but passed quickly. I think I was shown a polyp. The drugs had really kicked in by the end, and I don't remember being wheeled back to the recovery room. Friday afternoon, so I only got a note from the Doctor saying he had removed one small polyp and that I needed to have another colonoscopy in five years. Relief. Food. Groggy car ride home. Nap. Hug kids. All is copacetic.

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