Laugh Your Way to Lower Stress

Photo Ops

I had my first colonoscopy last week and I have the photos to prove it. If I were Anthony Weiner, I’d send one to a stranger or post it as my new profile pic on Facebook.

The most distressing part of the procedure was reading the doctor’s notes afterward. Under “General constitution,” next to 5’7″, 149 pounds, she wrote “well-nourished.” Well-nourished? I dare her to lie down in a compromising position with her backside exposed and not look a little well-nourished herself! Besides, everyone knows the camera adds 10 lbs.

To add insult to injury, when I showed up in the procedure room, I hadn’t eaten for 38 hours (you have to stop eating solid food at 10 p.m. the day before the day before a colonoscopy and survive on nothing but clear liquids; for a few hours I wondered if Vodka counted. A quick phone call to the nurse on call assured me that it did NOT). I was definitely under-nourished. When the technician handed me the backless gown, I calculated its fiber content before putting it on.

On the other hand, there were really good drugs involved. I say this as a person whose heaviest drug use involves an estrogen patch and an occasional Ibuprofen. But a friend had told me she was partially awake during her colonoscopy and, in her comforting words, “It didn’t hurt at all. It just felt like a snake crawling through my intestines.” So when the doctor said she was going to put me completely under, I nodded and drooled like a junkie knowing her next fix is right around the corner.

I remember saying, “It might take a lot of drugs to knock me out because my mind never shuts…” The next thing I know I was being awakened by the smell of pizza and garlic bread. Okay, maybe the room smelled more of rubbing alcohol and fear, but I was just so happy to be finished and given the green light to eat again that I bolted from the room in my backless gown. I figured everyone there had already seen my well-nourished backside, so why bother getting dressed. I swear I heard a pie calling my name.

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