Wake up with a smashing headache. So maybe the liquid diet is not so hot after all. Not allowed to eat or drink past midnight. Colonoscopy is at 1:00PM. Keep away from me, I am going to be grouchy all day. My sister called yesterday advising me to eat very little and carefully after the colonoscopy so as not to upset my stomach. Not eating much anyways.

Waiting for the appointment is torture. Low energy to begin with. Don’t feel like doing anything. Nothing worth watching on TV. We wait. Still numb and trying to assimilate the information from yesterday. 3 years. We will take a trip, or two. Where would you like to go? What would you like to do? These are party questions, and movie subjects. If you were stuck on a desert island, which one book would you take with you? (My answer is a book on ship building). But think about it, who plans to be stuck on a desert island in the first place? And so it is with questions of life and death. If you knew you had 6 weeks to live, what would you do? The answers change when reality stares you in the face.

Lets go to Africa. South America. Vietnam. No wait. Lets just stay home and be with our friends. Renovate the house. Create Eden in our back yard and enjoy our last days where we are most comfortable.

Time for the procedure. Janet drives. I am very quiet, mostly hunger and headache. But the weight of the moment is unbearable. We both have the same reaction to these moments, think of something else. Have to do the laundry when we get home. Clean the house. Shit, we are already at the hospital. Park the car, make our way in to the waiting room. Each hospital has its own character. So far, we have been to Toronto General Hospital (TGH), Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH), and now Western Hospital (no acronyms for this place). This one is very active. They have coffee shops and a food court. Located in a more run down neighbourhood, the newly renovated hospital attracts all sorts of people. There is lots of activity in the halls and corridors. Not like people waiting, but people hustling and bustling around. Does not even feel like a hospital. Until we get to the colonoscopy room.

No waiting. We are whisked in by a very authoritative, fast talking and no-nonsense guy. Change into the gown, and yes, wear two of them so one can see your bare ass as you parade around. Then in to the operating room. Dr. Kennedy is there, and the guy turns out to be her assistant. Not sure if he is a doctor of some sort as well, though I doubt it since he gave his name as Goodwin. Could be a technologist of sorts.  A bed is rolled in. Goodwin, Dr. Kennedy and another person named Christopher have a conversation. They obviously like her.

Intravenous needle is inserted. No explanation of what is about to happen, other than we are diving in for an inspection. I lie on my side and whatever tools they are using are inserted in my rectum. Don’t feel a thing. I am watching everything on the monitor. Yes, I am awake. Find out later that they needed me awake to find out when I was in pain. Are you kidding me? I was very vocal about that. You see these animations on House and CSI, but nothing like watching a camera winding its way through your system. They finally stop at the tumour. You half expect something to rear its head and start doing battle. Too much TV.

They poke around for a while, back and forth, with each activity eliciting sharp pain noises from me. This is not pleasant. Some poker type thing keeps poking at the tumour. They really do not need to provoke this thing, it looks mightily pissed all on its own. It is finally over. They have taken a couple of biopsies and we are headed home. They will be in touch as to the next steps. I am seeing the liver guy on Thursday, and Dr. Kennedy will try and be there.

We go downstairs to the food court. Janet had packed some food, and I use the term loosely. Tea, Jello, water, Gatorade. I don’t remember eating anything too heavy. My sister’s advice to take it easy goes out of the window. I am way too hungry to care. Can’t help but think of all those movies in which they tell people to drink slowly as they are rescued from the trek through the desert. I eat like this is the last pathetic meal I am going to have. We go home.

I am tired, and sleepy. A combination of the drugs, and the sleepless night before. I am gone for 3 hours. Deep sleep. Don’t feel good when I wake up, but am hungry. Eat something and go lie down. Really do not feel good. I am getting to the stage where I can tell if I have a temperature or not. I have a temperature. Go to bed with a temperature of 38.5. Janet calls Ruth who asks to speak with me.

Where are the pains? Remember where I pressed and how? Do that to yourself and tell me what happens. Do this, do that. The prognosis? Remember the biopsy? The one in which they poke you and CUT a piece of your innards? It turns out the body does not like to have its innards tampered with. They should have put a BandAid on while they were cutting away. The temperature is a reaction to the cutting. Take two aspirins, or Tylenols and sleep it off. And then she says take the Tylenols once only. Well that is a given, can’t take the same Tylenols twice. I am so funny.

We talk about the the consult with Dr. Kennedy and the 3 year remaining life span. Ruth goes very quiet and wants to know why I even asked for a number. I didn’t, the number was volunteered. She is not happy. I am young and strong. These numbers are based on averages of some kind and are totally meaningless. Close that door and never open it again. She will not broker any discussion that puts any kind of life expectation on anything. I love Ruth. Going to elope with her.

Neither Janet nor I dare take a sigh of relief. Thursday is around the corner. We will wait until that day is done and take a breath. I go to sleep again, after taking my Tylenols.

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