To Stay Calm

relying on my practice from jan 6, 2023

A few days ago, I had mentioned that I was stressed out about the procedure. It went fine. In fact, there were parts of it I actually enjoyed — maybe “enjoyed” is too strong of a word? I’m glad it’s over, but it wasn’t that bad. Mostly because I’m healthy and they didn’t find anything wrong, but partly because I used the noticing skills I’ve developed from my practice of running and writing about it on this log to distract me. Is distract the right word? Maybe keep me focused on remaining present? Or occupied with something other than worry? As I waited in the crowded (but not too tightly packed) waiting room, I took notes of what I noticed. I kept paying attention (but without the notebook) when I headed back for preop and as they wheeled me into the operating room. Maybe I could turn it into a poem?

More than 10 Things I Noticed Before My Colonoscopy

  1. lime green chairs
  2. an older man, restless, tapping on the table like he was playing a keyboard or typing on a computer
  3. a nurse calling out, Sue
  4. the steady hum of the machine that circulates the air
  5. the sound of someone watching a video on a phone — the volume was low, so all I heard was a constant buzz of voices
  6. a woman with a mask below her nose walking by
  7. nurse: Sherry with Barb
  8. the hum of a copy machine or a printer
  9. Julia
  10. Tanika
  11. Isaiah (a little kid in pajamas walked by holding a woman’s hand)
  12. Mark
  13. Brandon
  14. the soft sound of someone folding a crease into a piece of stiff paper
  15. the rustling of a winter coat or nylon pants
  16. Scott’s keyboard keys clicking
  17. a deep rumbling voice
  18. a person walking by wearing bright red sneakers. I wasn’t sure if they were red or orange, so I asked Scott
  19. a cart with a blue cover being pushed by a nurse through the waiting room
  20. someone playing music — I could tell it was music, but not what kind or any of the words that were being sung
  21. a woman wearing a bright yellow stocking cap walked by
  22. Bridget
  23. Nancy
  24. the woman with her mask down coughing and sneezing and blowing her nose then making a call and saying something about 4%
  25. someone saying the phrase, Dad Bodies
  26. Wendy
  27. Travis
  28. feet shuffling, the low hum of murmuring voices

A few other things: 2 of my nurses were also named Sara/h — one was Sara, the other Sarah. My doctor’s sister is Zara. He told me the name means “flower.” When I was wheeled into the operating room, they were talking about how amazing air fryers are. As I drifted off to sleep I heard one of them saying, It’s the best appliance I have. Better than a microwave. I use it 6 or 7 times a week!