The ‘C’ Word

This post is broken into two sections, both of which feature the letter ‘C’. It’s like Sesame Street but with M15+ themes.

The first ‘C’ follows from the previous post, and touches upon the joy that is the colonoscopy. I can honestly say that it is a joy because I don’t remember a single part of it. My memory is of immediately before, and the crushing aftermath.

The second ‘C’ relates to the pathology results. I don’t think I’m letting any cats out of the bag to say that the story, at least in terms of diagnoses, doesn’t end well for me. But hey, you guys already knew that…

So after being ‘cleansed’, twice, I was ready to be scoped. I had read that the scope was about as thick as the little finger on your hand. I hoped that the designer of the scope was of a slender build, preferably female and Asian, as opposed to my caucasian meat-hand hands.

As it turned out, I had AGES to wait for my procedure. There must have been a backlog (boom tish) of work because I was over an hour late going in. When my name was called, I was shown into a broom closet, told to remove my clothes and put them in a bag, put a gown on, and then come through a door when I was ‘ready’. I laughed as I was taking my clothes off and could hear the various medical people (scientific term) on the other side, thinking to myself that maybe I had stumbled onto the set of ‘Thank God You’re Here’.

Sadly, in lieu of Shane Bourne was an overly tall fellow who introduced himself as my anaesthetist. I was expecting an Indian fellow (as in Vindaloo as opposed to Running Bear) and questioned the sandman who appeared before me. He seemed remotely qualified, and injected something into me that suggested he had at least some idea what he was doing. My surgeon, Dr Koshy then appeared and asked me how I was feeling. By that stage, my inhibitions were rapidly fading and I was on the way out.

Apparently, according to the anaesthetist and nurse, my last words were asking my surgeon whether he was aware of the irony that existed given his name (Anil) could be mispronounced as ‘anal’ and he was a colorectal surgeon. I never did get to hear the response.

I woke in the recovery room, hoping to farting like a trooper, having watched numerous ‘post colonoscopy’ videos on YouTube. Sadly, there was no such merriment. My surgeon came and in my anaesthetised fog, informed me that he had found a ‘lesion’ in my rectum, before telling me he would see next week and disappearing.

I may or may not have yelled ‘FUCK’ loudly and repeatedly. That’s actually a lie. I did. Over and over again. A nurse, feeling sorry for me, and no doubt hoping to shut me up, left my file on my bed. The report from the procedure revealed a ‘large circumferential tumour… Follow up: CT/MRI scans for staging/size’. Even in my drug induced haze I knew shit was fucked up.

A week later, after pestering my surgeon to give me the good/bad news sooner rather than later to ease my already terminal anxiety, Lyndell and I walked into my surgeon’s office with Annabelle (our 20mo daughter in tow). The next 1/2 hour was a blur, being referred for various scans, and shown operative options and something that vaguely resembled reassurance.

The only thing I took from the afternoon was that it was official. I had cancer. On the upside, Lyndell was right. Something was dead/dying in my ass.

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