Me and My Colonoscopy

I had a two hour run scheduled today that’s not going to happen. I’m nauseous, tired, stuffy, and fuzzy feeling. It’s all because of something that happened on Friday.

I turned 50 in December. A right of passage in America when you turn 50 and have good health insurance is a colonoscopy. I wasn’t thinking very hard about this until a friend of mine had one a few months ago (at 51) and discovered she had colon cancer. A week later she had major surgery and today she’s doing fine as they “got it all out.” Another friend had one at age 42 since his family had a history of colon cancer and they discovered a major pre-cancerous tumor. His view is that he’d be dead if he hadn’t had the procedure.

So – in I went on Friday to have my colonoscopy. I have another friend who turned 50 within a month of me who was also having his first colonoscopy on Friday. As we drank our pre-colonoscopy “cocktail” which will be familiar to anyone who has had a colonoscopy, we joked about spending the evening on the toilet getting empty. Little did we understand the magnitude of what we were joking about – that only hits home around 4am on your 11th trip to the bathroom.

The procedure went well and I’m all clear (excuse the double entendre). Amy took a few pictures of me after the procedure. Here I am peacefully enjoying my fentanyl induced nap. I can’t tell whether I’m napping next to a machine running Windows Vista, XP, or 7, but given the various end of life for each it doesn’t give me a lot of comfort.


I’m always fascinated by the dedicated monitors in a hospital. Non-standard cables, funny button shapes, odd LED colors, and lots of extra controls. On the other hand, my 15 years of running is paying off, as demonstrated by a resting heart rate of 50 and a blood pressure of 105 over 67.


I slept all afternoon Friday and then went to bed early Friday night. I’d fasted all day on Thursday (part of the process) so my body was extremely uncalibrated. I have no idea what I ate on Friday or Saturday, but when I went to sleep yesterday my stomach was singing strange gurgling sounds. I slept in again today and am pondering taking another nap soon (it’s 10am).

I look forward to feeling normal again tomorrow.

Also published on Medium.