Two words brought the whole world to a screeching halt. The words? “Found Something.”
A simple colonoscopy with all its preparatory awfulness suddenly became not so simple and not so awful. My focus became very intense as I shifted my gaze between the Doctor who’s speaking to me and my Wife who’s still pretty much out of it, recovering from the anesthesia.
I’m pretty sure that the standard fighter pilot phrase, used when things go bad, slipped out of my mouth. (It’s the one that goes Ahh SH**!). My eyes blinked a few times to clear them and then I asked him for more info.
“Well it’s not a polyp, but it is a growth and it’s bigger than I can take out with the equipment used in the colonoscopy.”
“What’s the plan?”
“We need to involve a surgeon.” He’s our primary care doctor, not a surgeon, so this didn’t surprise me.
The yippie factor is on a decided downward slope about now.
Mrs Juvat is awake now and we discuss the plan, somehow I feel a need to hold her hand. She doesn’t seem to mind. Released from outpatient care, we head home where that afternoon, we get a call. It’s from the Surgeon’s office. They’ve got an opening in the morning for a consult. Would we like it?
“Why, yes we would.”
The yippie factor ticks upward a bit.
The next morning (Thursday), we’re at the Dr’s office bright and early. He’s got the photos from the colonoscopy and tells us he’s discussed the procedure with our primary care Doctor, but the area in question is pretty far in. He thinks it would be advisable if he did another colonoscopy, so he’s got the exact location of the growth and can take a look at it himself.
Additionally, because he IS a surgeon, he may be able to remove it at that time, saving surgery. He does caution that this is unlikely.
But, hope does spring eternal. The yippie factor ticks upward.
“When can we get this done?”
“Would 0730 Monday work?” (He actually said 7:30 AM on Monday, but this is a military-esque blog).
“You’ll start prep on Sunday.”
The yippie factor takes a big leap downward.
0600 Monday comes around. We check in to the Out Patient Clinic, saying hello to the ladies we saw last week. Much cooing and “you poor dear”s coming out. I know where the coffee pot is, so go fix myself a cup and drink it out of the room, not wanting to torment my wife.
They wheel her away and an hour or so later, she’s back into recovery. I ask the Nurse if they were able to remove the growth. She gives me a glance and a sigh and says, “No, but they did take a tissue sample for biopsy.”
Massive failure of the yippie factor.
The doctor comes in after my wife has recovered and is ready to be released. He says the risk of puncturing the colon was too great and so he will have to perform a laparoscopic colectomy.
I resorted to basic Fighter Pilotese at this point. “Huh?”
“We’ll do a laparoscopy through her belly button, cut out the section with the growth and sew the pieces back together.”
The yippie factor is approaching absolute zero about now.
His nurse says “We can do it first thing next Monday.”
My wife says “OK”
The nurse says, “you can start prep on Saturday”
“This is a more serious operation, we need to be REALLY sure you’re cleaned out.”
Saturday and SuperBowl Sunday were officially “Not Fun” at the Juvat house.
Monday dawns and we’re checked in at the In-Patient clinic where I’m very quickly banished to the “Waiting Room” to watch CNN or Oprah. Not wishing to be arrested for destruction of private property or disturbing the peace, I elect to go to my office which is about a block away and try to get some work done. The OR nurse gets my cell number and promises to call when they begin and each hour as the operation proceeds.
Surprisingly, she does.
Finally after 3 calls, she says the wife is in recovery, I should go back to the “Waiting Room” and they’ll call when she’s in her room.
Did you know that watching CNN actually causes a temporal flux effectively stopping time? 475 years after arriving in the “Waiting Room”, I get the call that my Wife will see me now.
I walk in and she’s semi-coherent. I make one of my standard comments, along the lines of “How are you doing?” and get an angry stare from the nurse. Well, this is going to be fun!
She’s mostly out of it the rest of the afternoon even with the constant stream of hospital personnel checking this, administering that. Finally the Surgeon stops by.
Two Words. Not Cancer!
Life is good. Thank you, Lord!