About 15 or so years ago, my mother had colon cancer. One of her older sisters died from it. My mother survived hers. It may be because she caught it early, or the fact that she contracted the disease over a decade later when treatments were better. Either way, her cancer puts me in the deep end of the colon cancer risk pool. So I began getting colonoscopies ten years ago.
My first colonoscopy was uneventful. My mother warned me that the preparation would be unpleasant. It involved fasting the day before and drinking a couple gallons of nasty tasting solution. Think flat wheat beer mixed with gatorade and salt.. And you have to drink two gallons. Basically, it flushes your digestive tract. The nasty taste is from all the electrolites they load the juice up with so that your heart won’t go haywire. When I was a freshman in college I was very overweight. A friend told me about this water diet he was on. So I tried it. I ate nothing and drank glass after glass of water for a few days. Not surprisingly I spent the better part of a Saturday on the toilet, after which I collapsed on my bed with the shivers. It seemed funny about a week later. A few years later I learned that this diet can kill you by stripping your body of electrolites and sending you into cardiac arrest. So, as bad tasting as the juice is, I don’t much mind. After I drank the first gallon, nothing happened. I sat around for four hours thinking that I might have to cancel the procedure. Then I drank the second gallon. Madone! Gurgle, Rumble and Roar. Ready, when you are, doctor!
In the exam room, the next morning, a nurse came in to give me a sedative. I think it was vicodin. I felt the stuff go up my arm. It made my whole body feel like it was glowing. I looked up at the nurse, smiled, and said, “That was so nice.” Once the sedative took over, the doctor could have used a two by four and I wouldn’t have cared. After the procedure, I was given the news that I was cancer and polyp-free.
Five years ago, I had my second colonoscopy. I decided that, since I knew what I was doing, that I could go to work the day before. I still had to fast but the flushing solution was different. I only had to drink two liters, about four hours apart. It still tasted foul. And two liters is still a lot. I drank the first liter around 1 pm expecting nothing to happen. And it didn’t. For about an hour. Then, Mary, Mother of Gawd! Gurgle, Rumble, and Roar! All afternoon. Other than vanishing from work for three hours, the rest of the prep and procedure was uneventful. The sedative knocked me out this time so I didn’t experience the pleasant rush in my arm. After wards, my doctor gave me the same good news.
This time, for some reason, the preparation is different again. The instructions say to start taking the juice at 4 pm. Even though I could have spent most of the day in the office, out of anxiety, I teleworked. All I could think about all day was food. The instructions on the juice box say you can add something to the juice to make it taste lest horrific. I toyed with the idea of vodka. Then it occurred to me that you really don’t want to be drunk when this stuff kicks in. And it did kick in. Jesus Christ really does have a middle name! Gurgle, Rumble and Roar! I still have a liter to go as I write this. Ugh and I hoping tomorrow morning brings good news.
Since I couldn’t eat lunch, I drove over to Spokes to retrieve the Sequoia. The pedal overlap is minimal. The bike tracks straight and true. Well done, Fred. A mechanic and I fiddled a bit with the front fender and trimmed the stays. I should be good to go. Speaking of going…..