Colonoscopy Daze

Posted by: on Mar 11, 2013 | No Comments

So, I’m about to share something very personal with you. I figure if Katie can do it, so can I. Earlier today I had a colonoscopy. At my age, it should be my 1st or 2nd but this was my 4th! Started early for 2 reasons: Genetics and…well, let’s just I had a bothersome symptom or two. I’ll leave out the gory details.

For those of you that have had a colonoscopy, you know that the procedure itself is really no big deal. Today, I arrived at the out patient center at 9 AM, was wheeled into the procedure room a little after 1o AM, knocked out a few minutes later and was back in recovery by 10:20. In total,  I was at the endoscopy center where the procedure is done for under 2 hours.

When they wake you up, the first thing they tell you is you need to pass gas. How many places are you going to in this world where someone is going to tell you that? The other interesting part of my morning was the little chuckle I got when I heard the patient in the next curtain area talking to the anesthesiologist. I hate to sound prejudice but always makes me laugh when he (or she) is Asian, in this case Chinese. He was actually a pretty funny guy.

What you have to do to get ready for the procedure is where the real fun is. Yesterday I was on a strict liquid diet, not including the yummy lime jello Linda made for me but is jello really a solid food?  In the words of Dr. Peter Venkman, “there’s always room for jello” which is never more true than when your in colon prep mode. No solid foods, no milk products, no juices with pulp or that are red in color. Lots of water, apple juice and chicken broth. Thank the heavens for the morning cup of java…black.

At 5 PM, I took the first dose from the Suprep Bowel Prep Kit, which coincidentally tastes like ass. Not that I have ever tasted ass but I’m pretty sure it would taste like this crap. Follow that up with two 16 oz glasses of water and let the fun begin.  Takes about 30 – 45 minutes for this stuff to really get moving but when it does, holy shit! Or is that holey shit cuz it certainly ain’t wholey shit.

During this lovely few hours, I continued to drink plenty of fluids to keep myself hydrated and to help with the cleansing. The good news is the first dose worked wonders and within hours my totally liquid bowels were as clear as tap water. So I did what everyone else who has been in my position does…I skipped the 2nd dose, which I was supposed to take at 11 PM, and went to sleep.

As I mentioned before, this was my 4th go round with the anal probe. Before my first one, at age 43, my doctor assured me that he wouldn’t need to see me for another 5 years.  3 polyps later, I was on the 3 year plan.  3 years and one more polyp, still on the 3 year plan.  2 scopes later and no polyps, I’m happy to report that I’ve been promoted to the 5 year plan.

Based on today’s common medical wisdom, everyone close to my age should have had their 1st colonoscopy. If you haven’t been have been told it’s time, it’s really nothing to be afraid of. You’ll be no worse for the wear and for a few days, your bowels will be smooth sailing.

Now can someone please explain to me why I have to be awake for my prostate exam?

Little Cries and Big Cries

Posted by: on Mar 7, 2013 | No Comments

So today is my mom’s birthday. It’s a little over 5 months since she passed away and she would have been 85. When she passed away, I never really had that gut wrenching all out moment where I cried uncontrollably.  That moment had come a week earlier when she announced that she was stopping dialysis and I spoke with her on the phone, begging her to reconsider, which she did for a few hours but quickly went back to her original plan. Stubborn to the very end.

During the days between her passing and her funeral in NY, I worked on her eulogy and there was always one passage which made me cry. Actually, I never got through those 2 or 3 sentences without crying until the day of her funeral when I got through the whole eulogy without shedding a tear.

In the 5 months since her passing, I still have never had that one big cry but I now find that I tear-up more often and that things that never made me weepy in the past, brings tears to my eyes now. Obviously, thoughts of my mom do effect me in that way. I’m also much more sensitive in general and I never know why or when those moments will strike. Again, I don’t bawl out loud but I do tear-up.

My mom was a huge fan of NCIS and Linda and I watch it religiously. Probably seen every episode, most more than once. Now when I watch NCIS, even ones I’ve seen before, and that episode tugs at your heart strings, I tear up. Jethro and his dad episodes…don’t get me started. When Vance’s wife and Ziva’s dad were killed celebrating Shabbat dinner together, so sad I just had to shed a tear or two.

With NCIS, maybe it’s my mother tugging at me that brings on these emotions. As for other times, I really can’t say. I just know that I get that feel more often than I did before. As a friend of mine told me, it’s probably just the way death has touched.

So mom, happy birthday. I’d write more but I have to go dry my eyes now.