Wednesday, January 18, 2006

The Opposite of Deja-Vu

Yesterday, I had a colonoscopy. It seems by now most folks have learned about this, and I think almost everyone who reads my blog knew about it, so there’s no shame in mentioning it. However, I will spare folks the boring details of the last few days and just say that everything went well and that except for a few minor issues I am A-OK in the gastrointestinal department. I am home today and not in class because I just can’t seem to get running on all cylinders. I was fairly weak anyway because, as many of you know, you can’t really eat anything for a full day before the procedure, only liquids. Not only that, but the colonoscopy prep-kit, which includes a liter of liquid to flush your system, made me really sick, and let’s just say I had a hard time keeping it down. OK- I actually didn’t keep a lot of it down, but I digress. Anyway, it just lent itself to making me feel even more tired and sick. Poor Katie has had a few days quite full of other people’s vomit. But I digress.

The thing that is most interesting to me are the things I can’t actually remember. Shortly before the procedure, I received a full shot of Demerol. I was to drift into what the nurse described as “twilight sleep” and that I would remain drowsy after the procedure but would begin to be somewhat lucid within the hour. Here’s where it gets interesting. No harm was done, but I was given a full dose of the drug because I am a “big guy”, ie, 6 feet tall. However, I think the average body weight for 6 foot guys is about 160 lbs. I, on the other hand, weigh almost 30 lbs less than that, so the Demerol hit me like a ton of bricks. Evidently the staff was surprised at how out of it I was and how long it was taking me to come back to lucidity.

Now, all of this is according to Katie, as I cannot remember any of it, but I was REALLY out of it, and it took a long while for me to even be able to talk and recognize anyone. There was a guy named Mike and a nurse named Sherry who were taking care of me, they put me in a wheel chair, I started to gag a bit and they made sure I was OK, I rode home with Katie fairly lucid and talking the whole time, and after sleeping a bit, I ate a big bowl of Jello, again talking to Katie the whole time- And I remember none of it. I remember nothing for hours after the procedure, even stuff that I was doing after I was up and walking around. I have little snippets of things here and there, like hearing Katie around the house or having a quick visitor (who seemed to be doing much better than the last time I saw her- Hi, friend!) Later that night I talked to my mom and I even had trouble remembering what I had eaten for dinner 30 minutes before. And I was evidently telling Katie the same stories over and over again, and every time I remembered something new to tell Katie and began to describe it to her, she just smiled and would finish the story for me. Really a freaky experience. I evidently told her about how bad my IV hurt at least ten times just on the ride home. What was the strangest aspect of it is that everytime I told the story, Katie would laugh and tell me that I had already told her. I would be surprised and express disbelief that I had already related the thought to her. And then I would promptly forget the whole exchange and start telling her the same thing again within a few minutes time, with no recollection that I had not only already told her, but that I had numerous times already been told that I had told her. (I'll probably find out later that I have already posted a blog entry about all this yesterday.) It is very strange to be somewhat functional but to have no recall of it. Katie and I were discussing that this may be what the early stages of Alzheimer’s Disease is like. I knew my memory loss would eventually pass. I can’t imagine what it would be like to simply lose your own life in this manner.

So I am better now, and though very groggy, my system seems to be readjusting back to normal. I should up and rolling along OK by Thursday.


IPW said...

I am glad you are okay and I would only say this after the fact and because I didn't have to care for you.

But that story is hilarious! I can't begin to imagine you on drug.

Well anyway. Glad you are okay.


St. Izzy said...

Glad everything came...


Glad you're OK.

I've had similar experiences just from fatigue. Woke up one morning to have Lizzy ask me what time we were picking my brothers up. I just let my face hang here on the front of my head and aksed something intelligent like "huh?" She told me that I had answered the phone the previous evening, talked to my father for an hour and a half, and promised to pick up my brothers and take them over to dad's for dinner. I had no memory of this whatsoever.

So I had to call my dad, confess that I didn't remember our conversation, and ask when we were supposed to arrive. My father, supportive soul that he is, accused me of being on drugs.

Aren't all Jesus Freaks stoners?

all the side effects, none of the fun

Anonymous said...

I am glad you are better today, but your dad and I were laughing pretty hard over your telling of yesterday. Sweet, cute, but FUNNY!!!

discipleassisi said...

*sheepish* Hi, friend!