I remember when i was 22 years old and I was just out of the Air Force. Things were good for me as I had a decent, but stressful job working at a convenience store. The pay was good and I was able to afford a new motorcycle plus I had moved into a two bedroom farm house that sat on 10 acres. It was a pretty place and had potential and i had signed a contract for deed on it.
Things turned ugly the morning that i woke up and was getting ready for work. After showing and breakfast I went to the bathroom and that’s when i discovered the blood. It scared me badly so i made an appointment to see my doctor. After he examined me, I remember him telling me that i needed to go to the hospital. I was in shock. The day had been bright and sunny, how could this have happened? There was no other signs that anything was wrong. No pain or discomfort other than occasional indigestion.
I called into work and I don’t remember exactly i said, something about having to go to the hospital and left it at that, I think. Anyway I grabbed a few things from home and went and checked into the hospital. After the usual amount of paperwork, I was to a taken to room and I exchanged my street clothes for a hospital gown. Right away they put me on a liquid diet. For supper I got broth and a cocktail of orange juice and mineral oil. The next morning i was awakened for my first ever, cleansing enema.
They didn’t waste time then, several tests were scheduled, the first of many was an endoscope. My doctor started am intravenous line and gave me something that made me sleepy but i could still hear and feel everthing. First I gargled with a liquid that numbed my throat. Then after it started working, I swallowed the end of the scope. As the scope went down he would introduce some air and I remember belching from time to time. Finally he made it into my stomach and started to look around. Then he stopped. He asked me if I wanted to see something cool, so he bent the scope around and let me see two small lesions. Ulcers. But they weren’t bleeding and after the test he came to my room and told me he’d have to look else where.
The next day, brought and early, i underwent a pulmonary test of some sort that measured my lung capacity. I thought it strange at the time but back I realize that they were prepping me for surgery. That same day I had my first colonoscopy. Again, i was given anesthesia. They had me lie on my left side. Then he put the scope in and after what seemed like a long time,he said he was at my cecum. On the way out I remember him telling the nurse to open and close the snare. I counted 8 or 9 times. Each time he excised a polyp,it took a whole new day to get the results. ..no cancer.
After that i was go given a regular diet and after a sigmoidoscopy to check for bleeding, i was finally released. This was the first of three scares that I endured over the next five years.