How many times have you worried about a future situation only to realize in the end, it was a myth? Totally untrue? Something you made up that never happened?
I ran into a myth buster this past week regarding my colonoscopy.
A month ago, while in the doctor’s office, since I was 50, they recommended I have a colonoscopy. “Sure. OK. Why not.” I replied.
The reason I was so matter of fact about getting it done was because Katie Couric had shined the spotlight on colon cancer a number of years ago. Her husband Jay Monahan lost his life to colon cancer at the tender age of 42.
Katie made it easier for me. Thanks Katie! Check her out.
If you’re not squeamish, check out Harry Smith’s colonoscopy recorded on live television.
We scheduled a screening with the nurse practitioner to go over the procedure.
The hardest part of this ordeal were the diet restrictions and bowel prep.
I couldn’t consume any solid foods, including dairy (I love yogurt) from 7a on Monday until after the colonoscopy was completed on Tuesday at 3:30p.
Somewhere around 4p on Monday afternoon, I was terribly hungry and low in spirit. “Why am I doing this? Maybe I’ll do it another time.” I said. That didn’t happen. I marched on with the fast.
The bowel prep was also an awful experience. I had to drink a solution called SuPrep on the morning before, and morning of the colonoscopy. This stuff tasted super nasty. It was thick, had an awful taste, and almost undrinkable. I had to chase it down with ginger ale to make it bearable.
On the upside I lost five pounds in the process. This was a combination of consuming nothing but coffee, tea, chicken broth, miso soup, and ginger ale. In addition, sprinting to the bathroom a dozen times in loose clothing to flush out the system. Oy! 😉
On the day of the procedure I was extremely nervous. All these thoughts were running through my mind:
- I’ll have to expose my ass to complete strangers.
- This is going to hurt.
- I was embarrassed.
- This is going to really hurt.
Now, I knew I’d be under anesthesia the entire time. So why did I worry about getting hurt?
The subconscious mind plays tricks on us all the time. I see it with myself. I see it with clients. We’re human. It’s a fact of life that we all worry. I’m not sure why we worry so much.
So, how did my colonoscopy go? It was a piece of cake!
- I arrived at the doctor’s office at 2:15p.
- I entered the room where the procedure would be done.
- I was asked to take off all of my clothes and put on a hospital gown.
- They hooked me up to monitors and intravenous.
- Nurse asked me to lie on my left side, and in a few moments, I’d be falling asleep.
- I woke up and the procedure was over around 3p.
That was it! No pain. No embarrassing moments. Easy peasy. I was in and out of the doctor’s office in one hour.
Worry is a misuse of the imagination. ~ Dan Zadra
So, what can you do instead of worry?
- Ask questions to get assurance.
- Ask people who have already walked in your shoes.
- Have faith that what they’re telling you is true.
- Visualize exactly how you’d like to see the event unfold before it happens.
What about you? Describe below a time when you worried beyond belief only to realize it was a waste of energy.
Most of the time the worry is much worse than what happens next…. across almost any context.
For most people it’s a piece of cake; no pain, and the time goes very fast. It was probably the best sleep I’ve had in years as well. My problem was that they could only go 97% in, so when I awoke they sent me to xray to have what they call a virtual colonoscopy done. That was uncomfortable, though I probably still had enough anesthesia in me so it didn’t hurt.
You know me; I never take the easy way out. lol
Mitch, thanks for sharing. Sorry you had to take an extra step.
You must be glad that’s “behind” you. 😉
I’m a big believer in the philosophy that “Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.” – Leo Buscaglia
I was diagnosed with GIST cancer, a rare sarcoma, in June of 2012. I was in shock about the surgery – imagine, 60 years old and I had never been in a hospital, never had even a broken bone. And as a needlephobic, I worried, worried, worried about all the blood tests. I think I spent the first year worrying about the whole situation, constantly. Then I found some online support groups – people who were on the same path as I – and worry changed to informed concern. Knowing others that are going through it, and believing their experiences valid, allows me to ask the right questions of my oncologists and trust the answers. Even if the answer is “I don’t know”. I can’t say that all my worries about it are gone, as it is still the Sword of Damocles over my head, but I’m not robbing today of its joy with incessant worrying.
Perry, thanks for sharing.
It’s interesting how the closer you walked towards fear, the fear virtually vaporized.
Glad you’ve moved forward.