There have been countless jokes, comedy routines, and humorous articles written about colonoscopy, but I’m a firm believer that, like Mexican food restaurants, there can’t be many. Moreover, we now live in a world where each individual colon has the right to assert its own unique identity that cannot be categorized based on society’s stereotypical definitions of the large intestine.
Since I turned 50 and my stylists started charging extra to clean my ear hair, many of my friends and loved ones have encouraged me to schedule a colonoscopy. At first, I was hesitant, perhaps because the procedure elicited images of alien abductions involving physical scanners the size of Russian ICBMs. Or maybe you were afraid of what a gastroenterologist might discover based on my long history of devouring anything the Food and Drug Administration deemed almost edible.
My fears were so deep that for the first two years of my fifties I turned to cumbersome, confusing, and potentially disastrous colon cancer screening kits. But as my friend’s gastroenterologist once warned him, “There really isn’t a great way to pick up stool.”
And sure enough, when I tried to use combos, performing juggling usually resulted in an emergency hazmat team reserve being called.
But this year, out of fear that I might not live long enough to become a financial and psychological burden on my three daughters, I decided to go ahead (or stimulate) and schedule a full colonoscopy with all the scraps.
As most of you know, a proper colonoscopy begins with the preparatory process of fasting and taking a regimen of military-grade laxatives designed to turn you into the nozzle of a human fire hose tuned to the power of Armageddon. For me, though, prep wasn’t as painful as I expected. Instead of having to set up a camping site next to the toilet, I was actually able to do some yard work – with the slight inconvenience of occasionally making a quick drive to the bathroom.
By the end of the day, though, I understood what a friend of mine meant when he advised that instead of toilet paper, I should have a snow cone handy.
After a full day of fasting and getting the enchiladas back to sleep the night before, I was eager to finish the procedure in the morning so I could resume my steady Tex-Mex and Andy’s Frozen Custard diet. I am happy to say that the entire medical staff at the clinic were very friendly and kind, although I couldn’t help thinking that they were all trying not to laugh – with my wife.
I have to admit I was a little nervous because this was my first time to fall asleep (when I’m not listening to a church sermon), but the anesthesiologist told me it would be like taking a really good idea for a nap – while on the same drugs that killed Michael Jackson.
When I woke up, I expected to feel like I was on the receiving end of a Build a Bear Workshop stuffing station. Instead, I felt surprisingly fresh, well rested and oddly breathable.
I am happy to report that the doctor found my colon very dull and said he hadn’t been interested in seeing it again for ten years. I ordered the Gut Photo Family Value Pack with two 8″ x 10″, three 5″ x 7″ and eight wallets. He did not laugh.
After the procedure, my wife drove me to the nearest Mexican restaurant, and I felt so much satisfied and relieved that I overcame my fears and did what was best for my health—while consuming an outrageous amount of chips and sauce.
So, if you’ve been putting off your colonoscopy, let me encourage you to do so. You’ll have a great sleep, you can eat your favorite food without feeling guilty when it’s over, and it may help you live long enough to become a financial and psychological burden on the ones you love the most.
Jase Graves is an award-winning humorist columnist from East Texas. His columns have appeared in Texas Escapes, Shreveport Times, Longview News Journal, and The Kilgore News Herald. Contact Graves at [email protected]