Sorry I haven't been back to let you know about the actual procedure. But you know, now that it's over, it's like oh, what, the colonoscopy? That was sooo Tuesday afternoon . Now all I care about is the office holiday party, and how many drinks = not making an ass of myself on the dance floor.
Jeff and I left for the hospital at precisely 12N. I'd gotten my bathroom visits down to every 30 minutes, which I figured left me a spare 15 minutes to get from the parking garage to the lobby before things got out of hand.
Right before we left, I walked in the living room to find Jeff flipping through a magazine. "I need you to get totally ready so that when I say go, we can literally be downstairs in the car in 30 seconds." He got going, and I hit the loo one last time. Then it was GO! GO! GO!
We were like a football team doing drills, running down the stairs in tight formation. Door open. Door shut. I hit the garage door opener while he started the engine. The trip was full of backseat driving: "Turn left!" "Speed up through the light!" "Pass this car!" "Get in the right lane!" It was like Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Sort of.
We pulled into the parking garage with oodles of time to spare. I checked in, they got Jeff's number to call him when I was ready, and he took off for greener pastures. I toodled off to the waiting room. And promptly started to cry.
Go ahead -- you can say it. I'm a baby. (Or, as I told my very sweet nurse, Frances, "I'm not the most stoic patient you've ever had, am I?") I don't like hospitals. I don't like people messing with my body. I certainly don't like anal probes.
My nurse came for me and took me away to the hospital room, where she made me change into one of those horrid buttless gowns. I almost got to keep my sweater on, since the IV fluid makes you so cold, but it was long sleeved and I guess that gets in the way. But she tucked me up nice and cozy under a blanket and set to putting in the IV. I looked out the window to my left and gazed out at the back of a row of houses, one brick red, another white, and the trees behind them that had just started to turn shades of red and gold. I pretended I lived in the red house with my fairy godmother and lots of brownies and hot cocoa while Frances stabbed the fuck out of my veins. Seriously, I look like a heroin addict.
The lady in the bed next to mine had just had an endoscopy and her doctor, also mine, came in and out to check on her. The sound of Dr. Melnick's voice was soothing, but it wasn't enough to make me want to let her stuff a metal rod up my bum. I cried some more, softly. Occasionally the lady next to me would try to make me feel better. "You don't feel a thing!" she said. "I've had three of them." Goody goody for you.
Mel, a very nice nurse's assistant swung by and pushed me down the hall. It was such a strange feeling, gliding through the hallway under someone else's steam; the vantage point almost made me dizzy, walls and lights coming at me from unfamiliar angles. He parked me outside the procedure room and Dr. Melnick came by to say hi. When she saw I was upset, she reassured me. "The worst is over, this is a piece of cake." Well, I don't like butt cake.
Pretty soon she asked me to roll onto my side, and then she showed me the most beautiful sight I have ever seen: two syringes full of the elixir of forgetfulness. As she sank the first one into my IV, she said it would be a mere 7 seconds before bliss overtook me. I felt a burning sensation in my throat, and then it was like Alice down the rabbit hole, down down down down....
I woke up, about an hour and a half later, woozy and confused. Eventually it subsided long enough for me to notice Jeff was in the room, and then Dr. Melnick stopped by. "We tried to get you comfortable but no matter how many drugs we gave you, you kept thrashing and wailing, and we just couldn't give you anymore -- we gave you enough to kill an elephant." In my addled state, I wondered -- is she trying to tell me I'm fat? Then the penny dropped: "So we had to stop 1/3 of the way through."
Yep. I am so hardcore that I fought it even in my unconscious state. I guess often young people have a harder time than older ones tolerating the procedure. Luckily, the few things they could check for at that, er, depth were ruled out, but now it looks like there's a CT scan and a delicious barium beverage in my future. Whatever -- I think I can handle that.
When we got home, I slept for a hundred hours. I woke up to a bowl of spaghetti aglio e olio that Jeff lovingly prepared. It was the best plate of food I have ever tasted in my life.