One thing about chemotherapy is that it does its job and more. Not just affecting the pesky cancerous bits, it also wrecks other bodily systems and, in my doctors’ opinions, it has wrecked my guts. That and the mega amounts of other drugs I have been taking (all prescribed, I hasten to add). After a particularly memorable 60th birthday for Mark during which he listened as a strange doctor stuck his finger up his wife’s bottom (to clarify – the doctor was unknown to us, therefore strange; the doctor did not stick his finger up his own wife’s bottom, or not in our presence, anyway), it was decided that I should have a colonoscopy to ensure nothing untoward was lurking.
This weekend is the one for what they call ‘The Prep’. I received a lot of information from the rather sullen young man who made my appointment at CX. It can’t be much fun handing out information on this stuff to patients, I suppose, but he could have made an effort. The information was thorough if quite alarming and told me what to do beforehand as well as what to expect during the procedure.
Funnily enough, I’m not that bothered by the procedure. I know I’ll have mild sedation so hope that will be enough to take my mind off people interfering with my nether regions. No, it’s the preparation that’s causing me problems. Today and until midday tomorrow, I have to exist on a diet of primarily white food. White bread, potatoes without skins, white fish, skinless chicken and butter. The only relief colourwise are the eggs I am allowed. It’s amazing how much you want a biscuit when you can’t have one. Or a cake. Or something else that isn’t on the white ‘low residue’ diet. A piece of fruit, for God’s sake. Forbidden. Sigh.
I know it’s only for 48 hours or so but it’s very frustrating. Slightly more worrying are the preparations for tomorrow. Any direction which begins ‘take 10 senna tablets’ has to be a bit concerning. This is followed by 2 more extra-strong laxative preparations which should be consumed within the next 5 hours. Advice suggests not to wander far from a toilet. No shit! Sorry, couldn’t resist that one. So tomorrow will see me hanging around the house, groaning and rushing to the loo every five minutes. Advice on the internet from those who have been through the procedure before is to buy some special toilet paper – nothing scratchy – and some wipes. After that, I cannot bear to go into further details so will leave it all to your fevered imaginations.
Suffice to say it has put rather a damper on my weekend. Yet another indignity to be endured. How we get used to all the prodding and probing, the disrobing, the dignity shorts, the poisons, the nuclear injections, the zapping of radiotherapy, the scalpel. Surely at the end I will emerge upgraded, a newer model of the previous me. I wonder if it will be an improvement?