01-30-2015 Journal–My Anal Adventures!   Leave a comment

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This week begins the warm-up for one of my least favorite experiences I’ve been cursed with over the years.  It’s a special gift passed on to me through the genes of my late parents and one I wish I could have refused. The secret word for today is COLONOSCOPY.  I begin my preparations tomorrow for my seventh anal adventure and hopefully my last.  Over the next few postings I’ll document as best I can within  the limits of good taste the wonders of medical science I’m about to experience.  Lucky you!

My introduction to colonoscopies began many, many, years ago in a galaxy far, far, away.  After an annual checkup I was referred to a specialist for further exams and a possible bout with rectal and anal surgery for hemorrhoids and polyps.  Trust me, it wasn’t as great as I’m making it sound.  My very first meeting with the specialist lasted only ten minutes. I was given an armload of laxatives and and a large bottle of Citrate of Magnesia. I was handed a sheet of instructions on how to go  about emptying my body of just about everything and a future date for my return visit was also confirmed. All of a sudden I found myself back on the street with a real desire to find out exactly what the hell a colonoscopy actually was.  I needed to do some research quickly.

Two weeks later I seemed twenty pounds lighter after spending 48 hours within running distance of the nearest bathroom.  It was a humbling experience as I did everything possible to expel my entire insides down the drain. I arrived at the doctor’s office and checked in at the desk trying not to make eye contact with anyone. It was a lot like going to a fertilization specialist to ejaculate into a plastic cup or buying tampons at Rite-Aid for my better-half. Totally embarrassing.

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I was led into an examination room wearing one of those backless paper gowns with my butt sticking out. I was laid face down on the table which was then elevated high enough to put my head near the floor and my ass in the air.  If that wasn’t humiliating enough there was a knock on the door and in marched ten student nurses who were permitted one at a time to take a peek at my butt, inside and out. They oooed and awwed as they passed by, took a few notes and marched from the room.   Here’s a reminder for you. Never schedule a rectal exam at a teaching hospital.  You’ve been warned.

Another twenty minutes passed by and my adventure began in earnest when a probe on the end of a cable with a flashlight, torch, and camera were slowly inserted further and further into my backside.  They lightly drugged me and I was able to look up my own ass on a nearby television screen. It looked like a gigantic pink Holland Tunnel without the cars.  I then fell asleep and awoke twenty minutes later feeling rather odd.  My wife picked me up after I recovered a bit and took me home where I was able to get a few hours of drug induced sleep.  It wasn’t much fun but unfortunately for me it was necessary.  My surgery was successful and I received my second colonoscopy just two months later.  The doctor apparently wanted to go back in to check his work.  I just love thorough doctors.

Fifteen years later my family doctor gave me more bad news during my annual visit.  Because of two colon surgeries on my late mother for cancerous polyps he felt I needed to be checked again. Colonoscopy number three came and went and I breathed another sign of relief.  I was good to go for a while I thought.

Within a few years my mother had another cancerous piece of her colon removed and that triggered regularly scheduled colonoscopies for me for the foreseeable future.  It’s now 2015 and I’m ready for number seven.  The technology has improved dramatically over the years and the drugs are much better.  Getting colonoscopies stopped bothering me years ago because the alternative is too ugly to think about.  Over the years I’ve had upwards of ten to twelve very small polyps burned from my colon and fortunately none were cancerous.  I plan on living a long and full life and these god awful procedures make that possible.  No matter what anyone tells you, fear is an excellent motivator.

More to follow.

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