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Colonoscopy


So, we all seem to have things that scare us. Some of us have a pretty good grip on it and some of us live with actual phobias.


One of my things is not letting things control me. I mean things like being tied down or held or put in small areas. I can't deal with it. This fear started particularly when I got sick with my heart condition that went undiagnosed for 20 years. My brain broke and it needed answers that seemed to be unavailable as to why I felt so terrible all the time so IT began making up answers to try to solve the problem. I am a problem solver! I need answers. From the time I was very small I would always ask "Why?" It is important to me to understand things.


So this colonoscopy thing had a lot of fearful things involved. I am not sure that even my MATCH was positive I would actually make it through this... but then, he also knows that I will not be controlled by ANYTHING. So, even the fear pushes me past the fear itself because I can't allow myself to be controlled by the fear.



Lets break this down:


I have a fear of taking pills or anything I have never taken before especially if I think it might affect my body in some way. If it might make me "feel" anything other than what I normally feel like I just can't get past it.


In order to do your colonoscopy you have to take 2 Dolcolax pills and you have to drink 2 packages of powder mixed with water. I have never taken either of these before so these were the first hurtles to get through.


I knew for 2 months that I had to prep for this procedure. I read the directions probably 20, maybe 30 times prior to my appointment. Each time I did, I read them out loud, with the words coming out of my mouth, at the end of reading the directions, "You can do this!"


The day came when I had to take the first 2 pills. Big deep breathing. BOX breathing it is called and it is a tool I use often. 4 counts in, 4 counts hold, 4 counts out, 4 counts hold. BOX BREATHING! I did that for about 5 minutes... in front of the mirror. I kept the words in my mind that this was what I needed to do so that I didn't have to do what my Mother-in-law went through. I ended with "You can do this".


It's first thing in the morning so I am at my best then. Nearer to the end of the day things get a bit weird in my brain and it is more difficult to control the fear and phobia issues. I walked over to the Dolcolax box and kept up my deep breathing. I took out the two pills and placed them on my tongue. I had my glass of water waiting for me on the table. I took both pills at once so that there was no turning back. If I could get this part done I would feel like there was no turning back because what a waste of stress if I didn't go through with it, so really, this was the hardest part. I took the water and swallowed.



Then it hits you ... the foreign object has entered your body. It usually takes at least half an hour before you know if you are going to have some sort of reaction to something. The LONGEST half hour of your life... I looked at that clock to see what time it was and calculated when I would be at the reaction time. I seem to have a reaction to almost everything I take. This is most likely because I have never had anything done and I have never really been sick so my body does not know how to deal with things. It just kind of freaks out!


I'll skip all the yucky details but I will say this... the drink was not bad at all. They have changed it to a new drink called Purg-Odan and it tastes like orange Tang. It is only 5 oz of drink and it was actually sour and kind of yummy in a way. It went down easy.


I had cramps with the pills but no cramps with the drinks. It took 1.5 hours longer than it should have for my drink to take effect which meant that there was very little sleeping for me the night prior to my procedure.


You take the 2 pills on day three of the prep and the drinks on day five (day before the procedure).


I had gained a lot of weight due to the stress of the past 6 years of my MIL's illness. I became very addicted to eating late at night and eating chocolates and sweets every single day, mostly in the late evenings. When I found out I had to only have liquids for the whole day prior to my procedure I decided that I was going to set a goal to lose 20 lbs by my procedure date. I almost made it. I lost 19 lbs by my procedure date. In doing this, I had completely changed my diet and was no longer eating at night. I have not had a piece of chocolate since the beginning of September. I am completely off of sugar. I no longer am controlled by it... an am not missing it in any way whatsoever. I can enjoy it in small amounts without having it take over my life.


By the time I had to do the prep I was off eating at night, off sugar and did not even hardly notice that I had to only have clear liquids on the day off. My MATCH decided to support me on this day and only had liquids too. He's the best guy ever! About three weeks prior to the prep date I cut out all chicken and red meat (I don't eat red meat but if you plan to prep... this is my advise for a smooth prep week). I only ate fish and veggies with fruit. I eliminated all dairy and I only had nut milks.


One week prior to the prep I ate only cooked mushy veggies and fish with white rice or potatoes but no processed carbs like breads. I did have soda crackers because my system seems to do well with those. You should not have high fiber foods so stick to WHITE not whole wheat. I also cut out all items with seeds this week even though you don't have to cut them out until day one of your prep.


Because I had done all of this elimination prior to my test prep, it went very smoothly. It was really very easy. I learned this from my MIL and my MATCH as my MIL had to do this several times and my MATCH has to do it regularly now too and he told me what to do to make it go better. I highly recommend following this plan if you are going for your testing! It will go so easy for you if you do. PLEASE GET TESTED! By the time you feel any pain or symptoms... it is usually very far along and it will be a much more difficult road! PLEASE GET TESTED! If I can do this... trust me... you've got this!



I get to the hospital and have to find my own way to the correct location because no one can come in with you. BOX BREATHING!


I had to take an elevator BOX BREATHING.


I got lost BOX BREATHING.


I had to talk to a stranger and pass odd men in dark hallways BOX BREATHING.


I made it to the right location. I got taken into a room filled with beds with people either like me; waiting to go in, or people who were still passed out or waiting to be taken back to the front door of the hospital plus a ton of nurses.


I get taken to my cubicle... #8

The sign of infinity. Good sign I thought. The never ending sign. The flow of constant life and good luck. It is the symbol of the Magician in the Tarot and he's got all he needs to get him through anything that might come about. He has all the tools and knowledge he requires. I was feeling this was a good start!


I got undressed except for my socks which was good because I had barely any sleep and am 20lbs lighter, had no food in my tummy and was feeling a bit cold. The nurse also asked if I wanted a warm blanket and I said yes to that!


Then the time came for me to be wheeled into the operatory. Down a long cold hallway. I was left to lay in my bed outside the door while they finished cleaning the room. Now I am really nervous...


You guessed it... BOX BREATHING!


I looked up at the operatory door and #3 was the operatory that I had been assigned to. My Mother-In-Laws favorite number and I swear, I said out lough "OMG! Thank you! YOU are here with me!" I honest to God felt her standing next to the bed. I said "I knew you would be here! I told you I would do this! I promised you I would have this test and let me tell you this has not been easy! But I'm here and you're here with me! THANK YOU Lou!" I said this all out loud.


Just then the nurse comes and says, "Okay, they are ready for you!" and starts to wheel me in.



I have not been in an operatory... I have just seen Grey's Anatomy and other films etc. but not ME going into one. Kind of freaky. But I remembered that Lynda was right there with me and I literally opened my hand up and visualized me holding hers. Just as I did this a song came on over the radio " Send Me an Angel". Messages are often carried in music... you just have to listen.



I swear as I pictured her holding my hand, that song came on. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I had a spiritual experience right there in that hospital in that operatory that she herself had been in so many times.


Now Dr. Brown comes over. I am still scared and when I get really scared I am very quiet... too quiet, like a Bunny. Tears were silently running down the sides of my eyes.


Dr. Brown looks me over. He askes to look into my throat. I am already wearing an oxygen hook that goes in your nose under my mask (which you can not take off now that CV19 numbers are back up). He introduces himself as my anesthetist. He says I am going to put you to sleep. I reply simply "Okay."


Dr. Brown goes and gets the medicine that will be administered through my needle that is already installed in my hand. While he is away, Dr. Francesco Barnabi, the man who did everything for my MIL to try to save her life, come in and introduces himself to me. I had never met him as Jason was always with her for those meetings. He is considered the doctors doctor. He is the top of the line and as my MATCH says, "a handsome Dan" too. He saw I was scared and said "This is going to be just fine. You are going to be fine." I replied "Oh, I know. I know you are the best." He rubbed my shoulder and said he was so sorry for the loss of my MIL. I said Thank you to him for all he did for her.


Dr. Brown now returns and leans over the rail of the bed... he clicks in the syring with the sleeping med but does not say he is doing so. Instead he looks right into my eyes and says "Now, I have a rule in this room..." I reply "okay?" He then says "There's no crying in here or else I am going to start crying too." I kept my eyes on his the whole time. I replied "Okay."

"No vomiting either or you know what's going to happen on my end..." and then I woke up to my nurse Pamela who was rubbing my shoulder telling me to wake up now.


That was it...it was all done and I had a deeply warm sleep that brought me incredible messages about my other business of candle making and story writing.


I am really sensitive to medications. I only take regular strength anything so it is no wonder that I was not able to walk on my own after my procedure. I needed a wheel chair to take me to the door. I was so dizzy. But the nurses were incredible. I also had my first nurse Anna who took my weight and two others, one who put my needle into my hand and one that took me in the wheel chair to my husband waiting for me outside.


Dr. Brown now returns and leans over the rail of the bed... he clicks in the syringe with the sleeping med but does not say he is doing so. Instead he looks right into my eyes and says "Now, I have a rule in this room..." I reply "okay?" He then says "There's no crying in here or else I am going to start crying too." I kept my eyes on his the whole time. I replied "Okay." (a small smile upon my masked lips)

"No vomiting either or you know what's going to happen on my end..." and then I woke up to my nurse Pamela who was rubbing my shoulder telling me to wake up now.


That was it...it was all done and I had a deeply warm sleep that brought me incredible messages about my other businesses of candle making and story writing.


I am really sensitive to medications. I only take regular strength anything so it is no wonder that I was not able to walk on my own after my procedure. I needed a wheel chair to take me to the door. I was so dizzy. But the nurses were incredible. I also had my first nurse Anna who took my weight and two others, one who put my needle into my hand and one that took me in the wheel chair to my husband waiting for me outside.



By the time I got home my MATCH had prepared me food and I ate some. I still had this nasty taste in my mouth from the anesthetic so I did not eat too much. I had a big glass of water and took some notes so I would not forget what to write about in this newsletter.


Then my head snapped backwards. WTF? I thought. I guess the meds are not out of my body I thought. Maybe I am going to go and lay down upstairs. Norman Bates was following me everywhere and not letting me out of his sight. He came right up onto our bed and slept right next to me the entire time. I slept from 1pm to 3pm when my guy came and woke me so that I would be able to get to sleep later on so that I could come in to work the next day. That's today in real life... but a long time ago by the time you actually read this.


And... I made it through my fears. I did so many things in order to do this one procedure but I DID IT!


I am pleading with you.. if you are over 50 years of age and have never had a colonoscopy... I hope you do.


It was really not difficult.

The drink tasted great, sour but yummy.

The pooping part... we all poop... so big deal. I set up the bathroom with a fuzzy robe, a light blanket for my legs, my fully charged phone and a great book and some water and Gatorade. I was all set to spend the time I needed to in there.


Sure it was a night of not much sleep but guess what? I had a CLEAN bill of health and don't have to go back for 10 years! AND I'm not scared to go now either!


As a courtesy, before you go to your appointment and after your prep in the washroom... I'm gonna say it... wash your butt! You are going to make a doctor very happy if you wash your butt! I mean, if we need to be told to wash our hands... maybe this needs to be said. There... I said it!


Please stay safe

Wash your hands and don't touch your face


I wish you always have a roof over your head and food on the table


I wish you push past your fears so you can free yourself of them


I wish you good health which means being proactive and catching things early before they become bad.


This is a great way to start your NEW YEAR! Make it a plan this year to be proactive! TELL YOUR FRIENDS and LOVED ONES to do the same!


Thank you for reading my stories and thank you for taking care of you. I am here if you have any questions about going to get this test done. I will be happy to support you ... even if you are scared!


Loves Ya!

Mrs. Rees

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