July 16 2017
Prep, scope, action!
This week progressed like a day in the Sims 3; some actions were normal speed, while others happened at ultra-speed. The colonoscopy prep was one of the tamer options on the market, a simple Gatorade and Miralax combo. Not getting assigned the half-lightly or go-lightly prep option was a HUGE win.
To start off you take two Dulcolax tablets (stool softeners) and then wait a few hours. Around 5pm you start the prep mix, drinking half the pitcher; 8 ounces every 15 minutes until you complete all of the nighttime prep. Two more Dulcolax tablets before bed all while rushing to and from the bathroom like having a bad stomach virus. The prep always gives me that queasy, liquid-sloshing-around feeling that makes life super unpleasant. Naturally, sleep was elusive. My head was pounding and despite drinking so much liquid, every food commercial on Hulu made my taste buds yearn for sustenance.
For the second half of prep, the same 8-ounces-every-15-minutes rule applies, however now you also have to be weary of the clock. Your completed pitcher most be drank at least 3 hours prior to the scope. NO throwing up. Pretty much, may the odds be ever in your favor.
I was hating life but doing okay…until the last 8 ounces. I decided to attempt a nap and then down the final few gulps before we left. Seemed like a solid plan. I had my forms printed, my prep down, and my sweatpants on. The clinic is about an hour and a half drive from the house, so I allotted enough time for a bathroom stop or two. Jon, bless his heart, was trying to get me to laugh and enjoy the day; Iwas not having any of that. I was hungry, cranky, sloshing, my head was pounding, and I felt like I was moments away from crying.
It happened without warning; like a key turning in a lock, slow and then all at once. I started throwing up like an extra from The Exorcist. I was so hell bent on not puking that I put my hands up…like I was trying to catch it, but it actually backfired and acted more like a shield. I hit everything: the windshield, the back window, the center console, and the child seats. I was drenched in a putrid lemon-lime bile concoction. It was in my hair, down my shirt, soaking my pants, and even between my toes.
Jon, in all of his infinite wisdom, pulled over to the side of the road and was attempting to clean up with baby wipes. Baby wipes–I can still smell the mixture. I immediately say, “This isn’t even the worst of it.” Jon looks at me and says, “Did you shit yourself?” Ha! Good guess, but no. Actually, I was worried about being able to move forward with the procedure. Puking is a non-starter. So here we are on the side of a busy road, Jon trying to find anything that can double as a shirt, and me trying to call the clinic without getting bile all over my phone and attempting to clean vomit from my feet/flip flops with a bottle of water.
I was thankful for my Crohn’s in this moment, because I use the bathroom so frequently there isn’t much the prep needs to clean out. The clinic asked a few questions and then determined it was fine to come in. When we got there, I stood in the parking lot staring at the building for a minute. So much was going through my head: anticipation, fear, frustration, hope, and a whole lot of buck-up Kayla, you’ve come this far.
IV went in, routine blood pressure check completed, and then it was time. They got the oxygen mask on, I’m cracking jokes, and the anesthesiologist does her thing. Next thing I know, I am waking up in a curtained cubicle asking to get up. They bring back Jon, who asked the nurse to let him leave (driver isn’t supposed to go anywhere after check in) so he could go buy me a new outfit. New outfit he bought: bra, underwear, even new shoes!
After you get dressed the doctor comes in and lets you know the preliminary findings, but the biopsies take about a week. According to the doctor, scope was damn near perfect. The doctor was excited by this, Jon was excited about this…me? I guess there was a sense of relief. Short lived, but there.
This is the way I see it: my intestines were always good, we just didn’t have the pictures to back it up. The idea that we just stop looking because my scope came back good annoys me. I deserve better than “residual pain from a prior surgery.” My surgery was over 7 years ago. These are new problems I am having. I get that I had part of my intestines and colon removed, I get that my insides don’t match everyone else’s, but a clean scope doesn’t stop the symptoms.
My PA wanted more blood work to check on my liver, but the clinic didn’t want the liability, so even though I had a perfectly good IV, I was told to go to the lab. As you can imagine, I was done with the day. I decided to just go to the clinic on Friday after work, since I had prescriptions to get as well. Apparently the bloodwork order never made it to the lab, nor the prescriptions to the pharmacy. Talk about needle anticipation wasted on a ten-hour work day for nothing!
So in short…I am no closer to remission than I was before.