Thursday, October 4, 2012

Journey to the Center of My Girth

Everybody said it wouldn't be bad at all. No problemo. They'll knock you out and the painless procedure will be over so quickly you'll wonder if you ever had a colonoscopy at all, they said.

Completely routine medical procedure these days. No muss. No fuss. No sweat.

They said.

And I believed them.

But I was wrong. Drag up a stool (pun intended) and let me tell you about my recent experience.

Of course, you must remember this whole thing was a complete fluke and would never happen to you. Or anybody else in the world, for that matter. Just me. I have come to accept my lot in life as one who hears at every turn, "Oh my goodness - that's never happened before!" or "I can't believe this ... I've worked here 30 years and have never seen such a thing!"

I believe it's Papa God's profound sense of humor in providing fodder for my writing, which I was lured into by well meaning people who repeatedly coerced, "Wow - what a crazy story! Who would believe it? You should write that down!"

Okay, so back to my colonoscopy from Hades.

The clincher (a little sphincter humor there) is that I wouldn't have known about any of it if my blood pressure hadn't tanked after the nurse injected my first little dab of woozy juice. Because my BP flatlined at 80/40 and the infrastructure had already been breached (meaning the little camera thingie was already on its way through the maze that was my guts), they couldn't give me more sedative until my BP crept higher. It never did. Therefore I was 100% awake and ever-so-reluctantly alert throughout the entire ill-fated procedure.

So there I was lying on my side watching a red-tinted version of Journey to the Center of the Earth taking place in my own little planet on the monitor in front of me. My bare tush was protruding from the hospital gown and blanket that covered the rest of my shivering body as the male and female MD's took turns guiding the little inner-space ship through the tight, twisting tunnel that was my colon.

About ten minutes into it, I felt a sudden jerk on the camera tether followed by a strange thwomp sound behind me.

"What was that?" I asked the nurse sitting on a rolling stool in front of me, monitoring my BP. She rose to her feet and peered over my backside, her eyes wide as dinner plates.

"Um, I think we're going to have a slight delay," she said, forgetting to close her mouth after the last word.

"What do you mean?" I asked, feeling the little inner-space vessel turn upside down and ram into my spleen. Or maybe it was my liver.

Turns out the female MD fainted. Yep. Passed out. Boom. Right on the floor. In the middle of my colonoscopy. We had to stop the show as a team of people in scrubs rushed into the room, revived her with smelling salts, and had a little tea party within inches of my naked derriere.

In an act of good will, I even offered a peppermint from my purse on yonder chair if it would help.

As they helped the stricken doc out of the room, she mouthed a silent, "I'm so sorry" in my direction. I couldn't help but think, Not as sorry as I am, toots.

So the male MD took over. With a vengeance. I don't know if he was trying to make up for lost time, or if his breakfast burrito had too many chili peppers, but he was jamming that joystick, baby. Full speed ahead. And I was feeling every speed-bump, crook, and cranny. Why on earth Papa God has to put so many sensory receptors where the sun don't shine, I'll never know, but I was Ooooh'ing and Whoaaaaa'ing with more and more intensity when we encountered the first 90 degree turn.

Try as it might, my little inner-space traveler couldn't stay on the road to make that sharp angle. During the third effort to muscle through the curve, I arched off the table with an honest-to-goodness scream and the doc decided to call it a crash and burn.

The mission was aborted. The ship returned to the launch pad.

So now I'm back home feeling somehow guilty over the whole thing. Guilty that my guts were too twisty. Guilty that I couldn't tough it out. Guilty (with a dollop of anger) that the gallon of revolting lax-laced Gatorade I chugged down the day before was for naught. But mostly guilty that sticking a camera up my nether-regions would knock somebody who does it FOR A LIVING completely out.


Now that hurts.