So, turning fifty offers lots of perks. I went on a few amazing girls’ trips; my period is debuting less and less; I was thrown a surprise party, where a stripper had me straddle his face in front of the guests; and, just last week, I had my first ever colonoscopy. At least I can say, that was something that was actually supposed to go up my ass. The prep for that procedure is like sitting in a center seat at a really bad Broadway show. It’s like torture, and there’s just no way out of it. I remember drinking that super sweet glucose during all three of my pregnancies. While it wasn’t fun, it was like a vacation compared to the amount of shit I had to drink for this.
I had to stop eating solid food after a “light” breakfast and have only clear liquids after that. Chicken bullion was like my filet mignon. At 6:00 pm, the real party started when I began drinking a large pitcher of fake Kool-Aid with a ten-minute break in between each full glass. This was the beginning of the process to dust bust the shit out of my colon (pun intended). “Stay close to a bathroom,” the instructions said. What they didn’t say, though, was how much you’d be using your gluteus maximus and sphincter muscles to create a steel blockade while walking briskly—with the straightest posture your body will allow—to the toilet. It was almost like I was a contestant in one of those egg-and-spoon races. And, this went on ALL. NIGHT. LONG. Thank you, Lionel Richie.
The next morning, I had to drink another bottle of some syrupy concoction and then force lots of glasses of water into what used to be my body. I was like a blow-up raft at this point. And, of course more toilet trips followed. I now needed my own diaper bag with medicated wipes and adult A+D ointment. The worst part was that I didn’t have an appointment first thing in the morning like most sane people do. I had a 1:00 pm appointment. I was now living the three S’s: starving, shitting and sleepy. I called an Uber to drive me to the medical building, and the driver had to have been a three-pack-a-dayer. Now I was up to five S’s with the addition of stale smoke. How blessed I was.
I’ll fast forward to me in the gown with the opening in the back. “Is there a possibility you could be pregnant?” asked my nurse. “Yeah, I guess,” I said, “but I’m 50.” “Well, do you want a pregnancy test?” she asked. “No, I don’t, because I wouldn’t keep it anyway,” said the Democrat in me. (Fuck you, Alabama, Georgia, Indiana and you other back-ass states.) The light-hearted banter between my nurse and me ended right then and there, as she was now quiet. She walked me over to my pre-op bed and put in my IV, and I waited and listened to a post-op woman fart very loudly from behind her curtain. The staff acted like they couldn’t hear anything. If I hadn’t offended my nurse, I would have joked about whoopee cushions or tubas. I thought, “Please don’t let that be me afterwards.”
Once in the O.R, I was told to lie on my side and felt the drugs rush into my vein. What seemed like ten seconds later, I heard my name called and was back in the same surgery partition. My prayers were answered, as my body was as quiet as I had rendered my nurse. They gave me apple juice, but where were the post-surgery Lorna Doones? Wtf, I was looking forward to those. I got dressed and met Ray in the waiting room. I’d like to say I ate lightly once I got home, but, nope, I ordered a big turkey sandwich. I’d also like to say that I didn’t have to go to the bathroom anymore. Sorry, that didn’t stop until well after midnight. Ouch. I did receive a phone call from my doctor the next day, and she told my that I was polyp-free and had a healthy colon. That meant I didn’t have to do this again for another ten years. After my relief, my only thought was, “I’ll be sixty then. Holy shit.” (Pun intended again.)
I defecate (I mean dedicate) this blog to all of the organizations working to fight for reproductive justice. There are too many to name. I will be increasing my donations to support them. And, to continue the anal theme, I don’t hesitate when I say that these people working to take away women’s rights are complete assholes.
*All names have been changed.
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