Sometimes people turn 50 and need to get colonoscopies. Other times people turn 25 and have such horrendous digestive issues that they need to have them too. I fall into the latter category. Too much information? I’m not too worried about it.
STEP ONE : Exam
Coming from the family that I have, I possess a very casual relationship with my poop. Poop is no big deal. Poop is funny. Poop and I are friends. But it is uncomfortable, even for me, to speak to a compete stranger about my B.M.
The doctor’s straight face and matter-of-fact questioning about my regularity was pretty entertaining. I tried to match her comfort, and it turned into a comfort contest. Subconciously she challenged me- and beat me shamelessly- at being the most awkward person in the exam room.
The verdict: blood work and a colonoscopy.
STEP TWO : Blood Work
I am a wimp. I don’t like needles or blood.
But I had to get blood drawn. Like a true champ, I took my mommy with me to hold my hand. The fast-talking, no nonsense phlebotomist seemed a little annoyed with me at first when I insisted on laying down for the procedure.
I don’t remember everything that I said, but it was, essentially, one long, fast, high-pitched run-on sentence that went something like, “I don’t understand whose idea this was and it’s not normal or natural because blood belongs on the inside and if it’s meant to to come out it can come out in a normal way like when I get a cut on my hand then you can collect it with your weird little bottle and keep it around your neck like Angelina Jolie...” etc. etc.
The phlebotomist asked why I was being such a wuss. “Haven’t you ever thought about getting a tattoo?”, she asked. To which I replied, “I HAVE TWO!!!” My mommy didn’t know this little fact about me. My mommy was taken aback. My mommy’s head increased in size by five, and she asked sweetly “you have how many?” My bad.
STEP THREE : Prep
The journey begins with a liquid diet. I ate jello, soup broth, and 2-32oz bottles of Gatorade. A liquid diet, as you can imagine, causes one to urinate frequently. I peed every 30 minutes for 10 hours straight. Hour 8 I was instructed to ingest 4 laxatives. Hour 10 I rushed to the toilet to evacuate my bowels, which continued until hour 12.
At some point in the 2 day liquid festival, I had to begin drinking a concoction of Gatorade and Miralax. 64 ounces of this cocktail down my gullet within 6 hours. I probably only got about 32 ounces down, and cried about 20 ounces of it out, and then peed the rest out of my butthole.
STEP FOUR : The Procedure
I arrived there. I arrived at the place. I arrived starving. I arrived scared. I arrived sweaty. They took me away immediately and made me put on one of those backless gowns. The man who sticks needles into patients arms came in and he stuck it in my arm and it didn’t hurt. I didn’t feel it at all! He was nice. He could tell I was nervous so he gave me something to make my eyes less darty.
Then they wheeled my bed through the doors, and then through some other doors, and there was the lady who asked me all of the horribly awkward questions! A different lady was there too and she stuck some pads all over my chest and then she put in the milky liquid in the needle and I took a nap for a while.
ASIDE : I’m getting really lightheaded recounting all of these needle-related stories.
I woke up a little while later. I’m not sure how I woke up, but I did and I felt AMAZING. They had given me the drug Michael Jackson liked before bed every night. Now I know why. Sweet Lord that stuff is good.
All in all, the colonoscopy adventure was pretty bad, but not the worst ever.