Thursday, April 28, 2011

Hot Cross Bum (Or 'That's not a Holy Day. THIS is a Holy Day!)

Warning: This Post Contains Far Too Much Information

Most people spend Easter getting their children (and/or themselves) high on too many shiny-wrapped bunnies, bilbies, wombats and chickens. Oh, and eggs.

They inhale hot cross buns at high speed, and hold treasure hunts for the children.

Most Easters, I am one of those people.

This Easter, I spent far too much time biding my time at a medical centre and then a hospital ER, discussing the state of my bowel movements with a Seriously Handsome Doctor.

A Seriously Handsome Doctor who asked: 'Are you decent down there?', before asking permission to lift my skirt and gently squeeze and palpate my tummy.

(I wanted to tell him I didn't know if you'd call it decent. I mean, I'd done what Mum always said to do and worn my nicest knickers In Case Of Emergency, but it had been a while since I'd had my Lady Garden professionally tended to, so ...

But the Seriously Handsome Doctor was already frowning, as he pushed and prodded and felt for, I don't know what. But clearly he didn't mean decent in that way, just decent in the 'was I wearing undies?' kind of way. Seriously? Do people not do that when they go to the doctor? He assured me they frequently did not. Or maybe that was an attempt to break the ice.)

After that, a nurse was called in to supervise, and I obediently curled up in the foetal position while the Seriously Hot Doctor then, ahem, conducted a thorough search of my insides via my butt. (Dude! You could have bought me dinner first!)

I don't embarrass easily. I've pushed out two children from my Lady Parts and half the maternity ward staff came to inspect the carnage after my first birth, (Thankfully - kind of - the damage was so extensive it made the second birth much easier. And less scary. And far more private.)

But I digress.

About the time that most people were enjoying their Easter lunch, I was being examined in the most humiliating - but necessary - way.

In the waiting room prior to that, I silently prayed that I'd get a female doctor. But female doctors came and went, and when a Seriously Tall And Handsome Young Man Wearing a Stethoscope came out, I realised, with a sinking feeling, that he was looking for me.

How. Embarrassment.

I know. Doctors do this all the time. And nurses. So part of me wasn't really embarassed. Especially the part that knew, if there was something seriously wrong with me, a rectal examination on Easter Sunday would be the least of my worries.

Bowel cancer runs in my family. I'm in the high-risk group.

And after a couple of very dear friends were invaded by bowel cancer at very young ages, I was so aware of the need for early diagnosis that I treated myself to a colonoscopy for my 40th birthday. (Who needs a party when you can have a camera 'shoved up your butt' as my son gleefully informed his entire class at school).

Nothing nasty was found, but less then three years later, I have the delightful news that I now get to have another one very soon.

Which will be yucky and sick-making (the preparation is by far the worst part of a colonoscopy), but will hopefully come up with a simple explanation for the fact that I've been bleeding from a part where we generally shouldn't bleed.

The good news is that the Seriously Hot Doctor didn't find anything obvious during the exam, and I was allowed to go home.

The bad news, is that in addition to the abnormal bleeding, I've been increasingly dizzy and off-balance recently, and my blood pressure and pulse rate has been alarmingly high.

My treating medicos don't know if the symptoms are connected yet, and suspect not. But it's pretty frustrating to be unable to do basic things like look down or up, without staggering around like a wino, or walking on an angle into walls and random people. (And wandering children. Dear God. Who will think of the children?)

It's like my brain and my eyes aren't quite in sync.

More tests, more possible explanations. (One, frustratingly, from an all-hours medical centre doctor who didn't know my history, was that my symptoms were all due to anxiety. Hello? I know I am an anxious person and I am going through a lot of stress. But I've been far worse than this in the past, and I've never walked into walls or bled from my bum. Thanks to Mindfulness training, I can deal with most situations - good and bad - and on the rare occasions I feel I can't, I know where to go and what to do to get it sorted. And I don't get dizzy or sick).

So how have I managed with the kids? Well, it's times like these, that I realise I'm actually doing a pretty good job of bringing up my beautiful small humans.

They've been awesome; Fussing over me and making cups of sweet tea (their usual comfort drink when they're feeling unwell, so they figure that's what Mumma needs too). They've even propped me up if I'm a bit unsteady, one on each side. And guess what? They've called a truce on bickering (most of the time), and are working together for good, and not evil.

My lovely big brother and his wife and son have been fantastic, as have our lovely friends and neighbours who have rallied around with offers of help and healthy dinners.

Getting back to the Mindfulness, it reminds me how much in life I have to be grateful for.

And it's a lot.

My family, my friends, my health.

I'm hoping that my Easter scare was just a wake-up call, which is kind of what Easter is all about, isn't it? New beginnings, new life, and giving thanks.

Readers, how did you spend Easter? And more importantly, are you decent 'down there?'



Ms_MotorbikeNut said...

Sweetie one very important lesson I learnt was to grab each day like its your last, never let a chance go by.

You may be the fittest & healthiest person but you will never ever know when your number is up.

I find by doing this I've grabbed at many chances of doing things or that, where as I never would have before.

(((( Hugs )))) XXXX Kisses XXXX

Glow said...

Seriously hot doctors make me nervous - I just assume their not really doctors, they're actually actors ala Grey's Anatomy.

Bowel cancer runs in my family, too, and it seems to get the younger ones, so I a lifetime of colonoscopys to look forward to too.

I'm all for wake up calls, so I'll second hoping it's just that xxx

Taryn said...

Sorry to hear all this Bronnie. Hope you are feeling better soon xxxxxx

nonoodle said...

"Are you decent down there" LOLz
I must have lead a sheltered life also!
Hope all goes well & I'm glad you have a great family & friend support it's so important!
Life it good! :-)

Not Quite Nigella said...

A serious topic but you approach it with humour and delicacy. And Lady Garden-what a fabulous term!

Unknown said...

Oh dear, Bronnie! What a nasty way to have to spend Easter!! As a total hypochondriac, I can really relate to your worries - I would probably have already been informing that doctor that I had Nth stage Bowel Cancer the minute he walked in! :-) (Something that REALLy frustrates MY Seriously Handsome Doctor...! :-)

Anyway, am glad to hear that there's no sinister news. Just a couple of thoughts - and sorry if this is "too much information" or "inappropriate" for publi blogs but you know a lot of the time, bleeding "down there" can be from haemarrhoids? They can be due to stress too. I'm sure your Seriously Handsome Doctor will have considered that and check it out but just thought I'd mention it as a common reason for bleeding.

Also, about the dizzyness - it actually sounds a lot like something I had last year in Brisbane - went on for months and was making me a bit worried, as well as impatient with myself since - like you - I've never been the type to get faint & dizzy. I kept having trouble everytime I got up from lying or sitting down or even just looked up or down suddenly - the whole room would tilt & spin - and if I was standing or walking, I'd start tipping over to one side or walking sideways, into things. Turned out I had "Benign Positional Vetigo (BPV)" - which is really annoying and a bit of a hassle to get rid of (you have to do get a doctor to do a special kind of manoeuvre) but at least wasn't a serious illness. It's just one of the crystals in your ear canal getting stuck. Anyway, the irony was, I got "fixed" after our terrible weekend to Tangalooma Island - you know when we had the very stormy weather and our ferry was practically capsizing and Paul got really seasick - seems all that tossing around on the sea cured me and I came back from that weekend normal again! :-) Anyway, just thought it worth mentioning and something you might want to check out for yourself.

As for being "decent down there"...hmm, I have to say, I never even thought of wearing nice undies to see the doctor! How embarrassing! :-) But as my own Seriously Handsome Doctor informs me, they really don't think about those things or view you like that when they are working - you are just a "patient" and they are totally focused on your medical condition. And he should know...he's a gynaecologist!! :-)


Unknown said...

Oh! I forgot to say - we would LOVE it if your Little Human Girl Pup joined in our dancing contest!! Please do ask her and see if she would like to - and if so, send me a picture of her & canine dancing partner! It will be lovely to have a few human pups taking part - there is another human pup at the moment, although slightly older - I think she is 11yrs old - in the UK. Anyway, I do hope she will give it a go!


~~Kallie~~ said...

"Decent down there" so funny lol. I dread when I have to have colonoscopies but the prep is the worst part. I'm blissfully asleep through the procedure and that suits me just fine... I think I would find it terribly difficult to submit to an exam while awake. I am in awe of you :)

Unknown said...

This came up in my FB memories. Can't believe I didn't update you all (well I think I did on my blog). I ended up having a colonoscopy, with nothing too major, but a few things needing fixing. I also had some nerve damage due to arthritis which was causing tummy and other problems, which resulted in surgery (NO anxiety!). And the dizziness was both due to Meniere's Disease, which I had been diagnosed with years ago but went into remission, but also BPV - so spot on Hsin-Yi, and I have a great chiro who does the manouvres when it is BPV. When it is Meniere's it has usually been related to my migraine's and I'm now on a preventer which has helped a lot. And Mindfulness has helped a lot.