Today I had my first screening colonoscopy. I fretted a bit about having to do it but everybody I talked to said it would be a relatively easy procedure. I suppose it was. But today I learned something about myself that I did not know.
In the course of my lamenting and kvetching to a therapist friend about having the procedure done, I mentioned my fear of undignified situations, and how, for me, an undignified situation equals being out of control, and how being out of control means I feeling vulnerable and I don't like feeling vulnerable. He suggested I think of myself going into the procedure as a child and knowing the adults were there to take care of me.
We were sitting in the room where they take your blood pressure and double check your meds and all and I hear the man next door telling the nurse he woke up too early last time he had the procedure. I thought that was no big deal, it meant he got to go home earlier. But no, he meant he woke up during the procedure! I silently cursed the man for putting that thought in my head.
I really was not as nervous as I thought I'd be but when they wheeled me out to go to the operating room and left me lying on the gurney for a minute or two, I thought about the child (little girl) trick. So there I am, a fifty-something grown woman without her glasses on lying flat on her back pretending to be a little girl. And all these faceless adults I was hearing as they whooshed by me were there to take care of me. I couldn't see too much but I could hear plenty. I heard water running and a sucking sound and thought, to my horror, that they were working on someone just off to my left, with only a curtain separating us! But it was just a woman washing out a big tub.
I shrunk, lying there pretending to be a little girl. I could not tell what was going on, could not see who was coming up behind me and let me tell you.The longer I laid there, the more nervous I got. I learned pretty quickly that my little girl self is far less trusting of people than my adult self. She wanted to high-tail it out of there! I had to go back to being my adult self and I had to reassure my little girl self that everything really was going to be all right. In spite of her not trusting that situation and wanting to leave, my little girl self is tough and scrappy, but she does not like to be cornered into situations where she has no control. Sometimes more so than my adult self, I believe.
So they wheeled my adult self into the operating room and started the procedure. I woke up during the procedure! My little girl self must have been the one quietly watching the screen while my adult self was trying to hear what they were saying. I could not make out the words. The screen was quite interesting, I saw this loop thing but then it started getting uncomfortable and I mentioned to them that I was awake. They said they would give me more medicine and they did. And the next thing I knew they were talking to me again. Now I wonder if that was not some drug-induced dream but I think it was real. And I think part of the reason I was so calm was because my friend Cyn said next time she had hers done, she was not going to take any meds and was going to watch the whole thing. I figured I was awake, so I may as well watch at least a little bit of the show. Weird, huh?
I think the loop thing I saw was the tool they use to cut polyps. I had several of them cut off and one partially cut off because they could not get to all of it due to where it was located. So, yeah, I am waiting for a call about the biopsy and praying all will be clear.
And now, what I really want to know. Do any of you have other versions of yourself that you are aware of that help through certain things? Or am I the only one?