Fair warning: Stop reading now if you've got a queasy tummy, don't wanna know, don't really care, or are too hardened to give a rip.
Ahem. Here goes: For the past six months or so, I've had intermittent bloody stools, among some other choice symptoms. I warned you it would be gross. So, what did I, a very mature and responsible wife and mother, do? I ignored it. At an October visit with my internist, I consciously told her I was fine and only my asthma was kicking up and would you help me, please. When my OB/GYN asked the same question "anything else going on?" at my annual in March, I lied again. It finally occurred to me that if I lied about my health being dandy, it probably wasn't dandy and I needed to grow up, get a grip, and tell my doctor. But, seriously, it's my butt. Who wants to tell people about stuff happening with her butt? It's. My. Butt.
Sigh. So, I made an appointment to talk about my butt with my internist. You'll be proud of me. I was honest and told her all the details at that appointment a few weeks ago. She listened to me. Did an exam. Ick. She proceeded to say something to effect of "given [my] very challenging vascular issues during pregnancies and this wasn't a problem then, [she's] not comfortable simply calling this internal hemorrhoids. [She's] also concerned that [I] always feel "full" up to my throat without any other symptoms of heartburn. [She] referred [me] to Dr. S so he can decide what to do, chances are it won't be a full colonoscopy." Oh, so-ho-ho charming.
Yesterday I saw Dr. S. He listened to my story. I assured him I hadn't had any symptoms in a month, aside from always feeling full, and I didn't really need to be there. He laughed and continued talking. Bah. After our very frank, very detailed discussion
"I'm not comfortable with theses symptoms and how they don't mesh with any other diagnosis. I want to do a colonoscopy to check for varicosities higher up, I want to check for polyps, ulcers, and cancer. I also want to do an endoscopy to check for any varicosities in your esophagus. Plus, reflux from pregnancy might not have gone away and you could have some damage we need to address. I'm not comfortable with waiting and seeing. There's nothing to be gained by it. You're young and a little too young for cancer, but sometimes we see it in women in their 30's. I've gone in before, thinking it's just internal hemorrhoids, and found cancer. Other times, I've gone in sure it was cancer, and it was just an ulcer. I want to do a colonoscopy and an endoscopy to see what's going on. It's better to know it's nothing."
So. There it is. Intellectually, I completely agree with the logic. Intellectually, I completely agree we need to know it's nothing. And, on the off-chance it's something, we need to know sooner than later. The logical side of my brain comprehends and agrees. The emotional part of me wants to curl up in a little ball and cry for a week. But, I'm a wife. I'm a mom. No where in that contract is there a "curl up and weep for unlimited days" clause. (If you have one in your contract, lemme know so I can appeal mine.)
Darling came home early last night, made dinner and got the kids to bed so I could zone out. (Huh, guess my clause is unwritten.) Since then, my mindset has gone from denial to embarrassed to terror to denial.
Why am I telling you this? Well, I'm a writer and getting it out via words is cathartic. It helps me organize my thoughts and ... yeah, I don't know. I write. The other reason I'm telling you is I want to encourage you to take care of yourself. I'm only in my 30's. Obviously, I have some things I need to address and with the help of my doctors, I'm addressing it.
Chances are very good it's nothing.
There's also a chance it could be something.
So let my butt talk be a lesson to you: Don't lie when the doctor asks if "there's anything else going on or are there any other questions" you might have.
Very long, wordy story short, I'll either be posting a whole lot this week to get my mind off my butt (there's a visual for you) or I might be scarce. Either way, I'll post next Friday (5/28) and tell you the confirmation diagnosis of "it's nothing." Or I'll tell you it's not nothing and beg for more prayers. And there it is.
The end. ahahahahahahaha