Updated: Bottoms-Up! (Literally, unfortunately.)

3 Apr

For those of you who read this earlier… an update has been posted at the bottom. I survived! 

I’m posting from the hospital room, waiting for someone to come and wheel me down for a colonoscopy. I wish I were joking – or over the age of 60 since this would at least be par for the course. As it is, I’m sitting here with an empty stomach, clenching my ass checks and scowling at the empty gallon jug of GoLYTELY next to my bed.

Don’t know what GoLYTELY is? Consider yourself lucky. It sounds cute, and I was tempted to applaud the pharmaceutical pun-master who named it, since it’s a laxative with the explicit goal of “cleaning you out to the point that your stool becomes clear liquid.” Sorry, but something that does that definitely does not go lightly.

In fact, there were times in the past 12 hours where I was alternately curled in my bed, moaning, “What have I done to deserve this?”  and staring at the toilet paper roll thinking, “I feel like a POW.”

Quick backstory… I came to the ER yesterday because I’d had sharp abdominal pains for 24 hours and was thinking it might be appendicitis. I’d put it off for quite a while because I remember one of my friends who is an ER doctor telling me that most people who think they have appendicitis just need to pass gas. I did not want to be that person, forced to slink out of the ER with a can of Glade. Hence why I waited 24 hours.

Once I was admitted they did a CT scan. The nice guy who administered the CT scan had a thick Indian accent, so I couldn’t exactly understand everything he was saying. As he explained the procedure to me, I thought I heard him say the word “anus” but I quickly dismissed it. But then he was standing in front of me with something that looked like a whoopie cushion with a tube hanging out of it, saying, “Roll onto your side.”

What. The. F+ck.

Hours later, I received confirmation that my appendix was perfectly fine, but that they found something that might be an indicator of Crohn’s Disease. Next thing I knew, I was admitted overnight to prep me for a colonoscopy. I nodded my assent, thinking, “Katie Couric had a colonoscopy on TV. No big deal.”

Turns out? I kind of want to bitch-slap Katie for false advertising. That, or maybe rich people don’t have to go through the whole GoLYTELY prep. Maybe they just go in and let loose all over the table like a woman giving birth, but the hospital charges so much that it makes it worth their while.

Fortunately, the night nurse (who is about my age and awesome) prepared me for what would happen, so I was able in turn to prepare my roommate, whose bed (unfortunately) is right next to our shared bathroom. “Ma’am,” I told her. “I apologize in advance. They’re about to pump me full of something that will have me trotting in there repeatedly, and I don’t expect it will be silent.”

As it turns out, she’s using a bedpan, so while I may have beaten her in frequency, she’s the one who should’ve offered an aromatic candle as a hostess gift.

Also: I felt sorry for her when I checked in because her chart indicates that pain management is a top goal, whereas I’ve been in virtually no pain since getting to the room. This morning, however, when her breakfast arrived – filling the room with smells of bacon and coffee – I’m thinking I’d gladly trade places with her… I haven’t eaten anything since Sunday. This is like Torture, Part II.

Of course, I suppose I should be careful what I wish for or define as torture. I still have the actual procedure ahead of me. Wish me luck!

UPDATE: I survived! The actual colonoscopy was a piece of cake compared to the prep.

When they rolled me into the room for the procedure, I had two doctors, two nurses and an anesthesiologist surrounding me. I looked around before they put me under and said with a straight face, “I’m pretty sure you’re about to have an amazing experience.” 

As it turns out, they did. How do I know? Because I WOKE UP (no joke) halfway through, looked around and said, “Shouldn’t I be out for this?” right before they adjusted the drip and knocked me back out. Apparently my need to manage situations is a bit hard to give up. 

43 Responses to “Updated: Bottoms-Up! (Literally, unfortunately.)”

  1. skippingstones April 3, 2012 at 7:47 am #

    Good luck – I hope everything turns out ok!

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:30 pm #

      Thanks for the well wishes – they worked for the procedure!

  2. dianeskitchentable April 3, 2012 at 8:04 am #

    Good luck – been there…why do they put the person w/the bedpan closest to the bathroom?

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:30 pm #

      Murphy’s law? The better question is: Why does the person with the bedpan NOT pull her curtain for privacy when using it. Do you KNOW how awkward it is to make eye contact with someone taking a dump?

      • dianeskitchentable April 6, 2012 at 9:22 am #

        Oh man… really? If there is a next time & you are at all able to speak remember to say “private room – I’ll pay the difference!” Don’t know why hospitals have this roomie thing going anyway. I mean when you’re sick do you really want to chit chat & make a new friend? And then their family comes in… Been there too many times & there’s not enough morphine in the world.

      • pithypants April 6, 2012 at 4:54 pm #

        I heard her ask for percosit (sp?) a few times. Not sure if it was due to my usage of the bathroom, or her general state of pain. In either case, I assume she was feeling pretty good about everything.

  3. Barbara April 3, 2012 at 8:06 am #

    Wow, stuff like this comes out of left field! Sorry to hear you’re having the procedure. I’ll have an amazing bottle of wine waiting for you guys when I see you in two weeks! 🙂

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:29 pm #

      Your brother has been a great care-giver, so I’m in good hands. But will look forward to seeing you guys all the same!

  4. Peter Busch April 3, 2012 at 8:24 am #

    Sounds like you might have to temporarily change the name of your blog … but good luck, Alison.

  5. themiddlestsister April 3, 2012 at 9:11 am #

    Good luck!

  6. Off the Wall April 3, 2012 at 9:57 am #

    Pithy….I sure hope you don’t have Crohn’s. I do. It is not the end of the world if you do, but I would take out stock in Charmin. Message me if you want more details.

    Next time you have to have a scope, ask for the PILLS. GoLightly was designed by the devil himself. The pills are better. Hard to swallow after awhile, but still better.

    Hope you got a nice little nap during the procedure, and then a big breakfast afterwards!

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

      I’m bummed I didn’t bring baby wipes! Wah! I may need to hit you up for tips…

      • Off the Wall April 3, 2012 at 1:42 pm #

        baby wipes and baby diaper rash ointment…..let’s face it, you have now officially regressed to infanthood! lol

      • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:24 pm #

        So maybe I *can* get away with wearing a onesie to the office now?

      • Off the Wall April 3, 2012 at 8:06 pm #

        only if you are wearing a diaper, or else it might be too hard to pull down quicky!

  7. squirrel circus April 3, 2012 at 10:05 am #

    You.Poor.Thing. At least it’s not being televised (sorry, that’s the most encouraging thing that I could think of). Hoping that, even if it IS Crohn’s, it’s mild and easily treated. Take care!

  8. thesinglecell April 3, 2012 at 10:05 am #

    Ohhhhh dear. I’m sorry – that totally sucks. And fear not – the bills will be outrageous. You’ll sh*t yourself then, too. For now, though, I wish you the best. For whatever the stomach thing is, there are a bunch of worse things that it won’t be, so that’s something to hold on to. Plus… here again… excellent blog fodder. Er, fertilizer? Way to keep a sense of humor while your insides get turned out. Good luck! I’ll be wondering how you’re doing!

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:28 pm #

      Seriously, I’m glad I write. I think it forces me to keep laughing at the situation the whole way through, looking at it through the lens of history even as it happens. At least, I *think* that’s what helps. That, or maybe I’m a smidge crazy.

  9. Karen in East Texas April 3, 2012 at 12:02 pm #

    Ah, the lovely colonoscopy with the liquid preface …. wonderful. This is my fun adventure approximately every two years. I hope yours goes smoothly and that the result is nothing too major.

    OffTheWall … PILLS? Since when do they have pills and why hasn’t my gastroenterologist told me about them. We have a serious discussion in his future. o_O

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:26 pm #

      Every two years? Good lord. You deserve a free car or something for enduring that.

      • Karen in East Texas April 4, 2012 at 11:00 am #

        I agree,wonder who I could talk to about that?


        Yes lovely gastro issues cause me to have to have them every two years. Don’t pinch me … but if you have Crohn’s having them more often is most likely in your future also.

  10. dianeskitchentable April 3, 2012 at 12:20 pm #

    Well Pithy I figured you were having a day & well deserve a little Sunshine. I’ve just started following your blog & absolutely look forward to every update. So, I’m passing along the Sunshine Award to you & hope all “ends” well.

    Sunshine Award:

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:26 pm #

      Thanks! I assume you nominated me for this specific award because I frequently write about where the sun doesn’t shine?

      • dianeskitchentable April 6, 2012 at 9:19 am #

        Eh, maybe blow a little sunshine up there. No really, you crack me up & I love your blog. Please put a bunch of posts out there next week cause I’ve got my sister in law coming next Sunday & man oh man am I ever going to be in need of humor.

      • pithypants April 6, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

        I’ll see what I can do to salve your pain next week. In the meantime, perhaps you can get her a quart of GoLYTELY to keep things interesting?

    • dianeskitchentable April 6, 2012 at 6:06 pm #

      OMG, I am laughing my ass off! You are a genius! I love you & I’m thinking I could maybe make some kind of margherita with it. I’m not sure if I can even get that by her though since she has “a number of dietary restrictions” that I’m supposed to be aware of.

  11. dribblingpensioner April 3, 2012 at 1:35 pm #

    Hope everything goe’s well, will be waiting to hear.

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:24 pm #

      I survived – that’s the great news! Thanks!

  12. twocentsplus April 3, 2012 at 2:22 pm #

    totally sucks….been there done that…..no frickin fun. crossing fingers you are ok..best of luck.

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:23 pm #

      Thanks! I’m just glad it’s behind me. (So many puns!)

  13. bonnie April 3, 2012 at 5:38 pm #

    The procedure is a cakewalk, especially after the prep; hope it works out that way for you as well. I have a good friend with Crohn’s who manages it very well, in case you need to talk to someone, but I sure hope you don’t.

    • pithypants April 3, 2012 at 6:23 pm #

      Thanks for the heads-up. I actually know a few people with Crohn’s, so if that’s what it is (and it’s looking likely), then I should have a few people I can shake for advice!

  14. Kimberly Pugliano (@GisSilent) April 3, 2012 at 9:14 pm #

    1. It’s like water spraying full-force out of your ass, isn’t it? Every ten minutes?
    2. They used Propofol on me which you come out of quickly. I was barely coming out when the anesthesiologist told me everything went great. My response: “I love you.” He left. I waited a few seconds and then came completely awake and asked the nurse, “DID I JUST TELL HIM I LOVE HIM?” Yes, yes I did.

    I hope you’re feeling better and get to the bottom of this.

  15. Peter Busch April 4, 2012 at 8:23 am #

    You must be wiped. Hope everything came ou… –what the hell, this is too easy. Anyway, I hope you get good news from the docs.

  16. twocentsplus April 4, 2012 at 3:30 pm #

    yikes!!! at least they knocked you back out…hope you are recovering

  17. DZ April 4, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

    LMAO, Pithy – Seriously, I just shat myself without the help of GoLYTELY !! Love it, just frickin love and and have sent your page to MANY of my friends to start following, just for $hits and giggles….hahaha

  18. funnyortragic April 5, 2012 at 2:51 am #

    Pithypants turned ickypants. Sorry. Couldn’t help it. You really don’t fill me with much hope though–my family has colon cancer, and I know I need to get a colonoscopy done myself, but it just seems so horrible I’ve put it off. For even longer, now… I hate to say it, but I’m glad I don’t feel your pain right now. But you have my honest sympathy…

  19. Greg April 5, 2012 at 3:37 pm #

    I remember my colonoscopy. Well, actually, I don’t. I was knocked out the entire time. As it should be.

    • pithypants April 5, 2012 at 7:19 pm #

      Braggart. I suppose next you’ll tell me you also didn’t WAKE UP in the middle of the procedure? Yeesh.

  20. mommysaidaswearword April 5, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

    If it is possible for me to laugh politely at this, I will. Though I do hope that Chron’s isn’t on the agenda for you because that for sure is not funny.


  1. What Katie Couric DIDN’T show us… | pithypants - June 9, 2015

    […] I’ve ranted about the entire experience before, I won’t bore you with a redundant entry. Instead, I’ll just share a few quick […]

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