blog

THE COLON, THE SEMI-COLON, AND THE COLONOSCOPY

Grammar never came naturally to me. Neither has my “regularity.” I know this is a personal topic, and the colonoscopy is to be taken seriously, but I can’t help my warped sense of humor. Not being able “to go” is uncomfortable. Bloat is not a pretty word. All my husband has to do is drink a cup of Keurig coffee, and he “goes.” Again, I am jealous of the man, who sleeps and poops like a baby…sorry, Bruce, I know how you hate when I bring your name up in my blogs.

So, I’ll talk about Jeffrey, our son. When he was about three-years-old (cute as a button with his blond Dutch boy bowl haircut) I made him buy me Ex-Lax – you know – those yummy chocolate squares?

Anyway, the four of us, Bruce, Janelle, Jeffrey and I, were on vacation (when I’m away from home, I’m chronically constipated) and I was in great need of relief. While in a 7-11store buying some candy and gum, I was too embarrassed to place the box of laxatives on the counter because it wasn’t conducive to a “private” transaction; so I had the brilliant idea of letting my toddler son pay for the items. He had no idea what it was, and okay, I took advantage.  The rest of us waited in the car, giggling, as we watched him through the window being ignored by the clerk, as other customers were rung up one after another ahead of him. Either he was too small to be seen over the counter or the clerk thought the little boy didn’t know what he was doing. Oh no. Is the clerk pointing to the Russell Stover boxes? Don’t switch boxes, Jeffrey.

Phew, our obedient Jeffrey held on to the candy we told him to buy.

We had to wait and see what would happen. “Come on, Jeffrey, be more aggressive; money talks. Put the money on the counter,” we chanted from the car. We saw him holding up the dollars in his little fist. Finally, he reached higher to the counter top and the man took the bills clutched tightly in his tiny fingers. Success. Box was in the bag. We cheered him as he got in the car, and he looked perplexed, yet pleased with the praise. Terrible. Terrible parents, I know.

Back to the dreaded colonoscopy: I could only understand every other word my doctor said to me, as he spoke broken English. That’s all he breaks, I hope. I got the gist of it: no solid food. Nothing red. The thing is I’m an emotional eater. I grab snacks every 14.2 minutes. So, how am I going to not eat for 24 hours? I piled up on the Jell-O and ice-pops, never feeling satisfied. I was also allowed unlimited clear liquids. Hmm…I called the nurse. “Uh, am I allowed white wine?” “Absolutely, NO alcohol,” she said. Damn!

I had opted for the Osmoprep “horse” pills, instead of the seaweed drink, but feared the over-sized pills would get stuck in my chest. I had to down 32 pills in a short span of time as directed and, only one pill got away, shot across the room, catapulted by my gag reflex.

I waited. The instructions warned: If nothing happens within three hours call the doctor. I watched the clock. “Oh my God, I only have ten minutes left. I knew it,” I cried. “I knew it wouldn’t work for me. I need dynamite!”

Suddenly, I was on the run for the nearest bathroom. Bruce later told me he could hear me singing “Hallelujah” all the way down the hall, across the house. At bedtime, because I was worried about the procedure, I took an Ambien to help me fall asleep. Then I realized two things:  what if I have to go in the middle of the night, but don’t wake up. And the other thing is my Ambien sleep-eating problem. So, Bruce blocked the bedroom door so I couldn’t escape in the night and sleep walk to the fridge. Bruce, however, did wake up in the middle of the night and tripped over the chair blocking the door. The dog barked like crazy, and I slept through the whole thing.

Next morning, my pregnant daughter picked me up to take me to the clinic. I told her to get to work, that I’d be fine by myself, waiting. Until I found out that the doctor was late, and it was a two hour wait in a roomful of people who used the one bathroom every two minutes. Some patients were slumped over in wheelchairs, others drooled, and one guy had half an eye. Oh yeah, and there was Cat Lady who sounded like she was coughing up a hairball. I wanted to go home sooo bad.

The good part was being put to sleep – a wonderful experience for any insomniac. And, of course, the best part was to wake up and hear that I had a healthy colon, thank God. What do you think about a sick sense of humor?

Comments

comments

Published by Janet Berg

Janet Lee Berg is a novelist and a blogger, who is known for her freelance writing on the east end of Long Island, NY, including Dan’s Papers. Keep an eye out for the release of her upcoming novel Rembrandt's Shadow, a Holocaust-related story about Sylvie Rosenberg, the privileged daughter of a prominent Dutch art dealer, who never knows her father's love until the day he trades his beloved Rembrandt to the Nazis in exchange for her life.

Click on a tab to select how you'd like to leave your comment

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *