Annie Dear: The waiting is the worst part, almost

Annie Dear
The Independent Aussie

What was the longest day in your life? As a kid, naturally, mine was Christmas Eve – the anticipation of Santa’s arrival was almost too much to bear, and the day dragged interminably. I then went on to believing the last day of school before the summer hols limped minute by torturous minute to 3 p.m. whereafter we were "sprung" like blue uniformed pellets from the school’s catapult.

Annie Dear

What surpassed that? Why, the day I issued forth into this world my darling daughter, Madam. 5 a.m. at the hospital – 7 p.m. delivery.  A mere bagatelle really, but in those days where you lay on your bed without the option to walk about, or sit on a bouncy ball, made the day awfully long. Thank God for the light at the end of the tunnel (so to speak), and I wouldn’t give up a minute.

Nowadays, it’s the day Daylight Saving reverts to winter-time. That extra hour throws me for a loop every year. Ah, but now I have a new one.

The day of colonoscopy prep. Now I won’t go into terribly graphic detail. Neither will I try to outdo the "greats" of prep stories. The spoken word goes to Billy Connolly, a Scottish comedian, who will have you weeping with laughter. The written word award goes to Dave Barry, who was at the time with the Miami Herald.  Google both and you’ll find them – I thoroughly recommend you do.

So – day of prep. Number 1 eat nothing. No worries, I can afford 24 hours of pending malnourishment. 

• 9 a.m. take two innocent-looking tablets – no problemo. Reaction was as to be expected, nothing violent, nothing to write home about, nothing to see here, move along.

• 4 p.m. – mix the nuclear reactor powder with enough Gatorade to fill an Olympic pool, and then drink half of it within an hour.

Sir, having gone through all this very recently, was going to be a font of information.  “How long does this take to kick….”.  Before I could get the last word out of my mouth, I was gimpily rocketing down seven stairs to get to the inconvenient convenience. He, meantime, texted me saying “relax, it takes a while.” “The hell it does,” I replied. 

I thereafter juggled my time judiciously to allow me time to chug the potion, knowing I had precious seconds to get where I needed to be.

The last half of the jungle juice was to be consumed at least four hours prior to the procedure – 5 a.m. for me … lovely. This second episode resulted in sounds I’m quite sure my body has never emanated. It sounded like I had dispatched the demolition crew and the cleaning brigade into the bowels – pardon the pun – of Mount Krakatoa simultaneously. My trips up and down the stairs were timed to a nanosecond.

By the time I was due at the hospital, I was quite certain I was running on empty. I reckon by then I’d managed to exude, shall we say, next Sunday’s dinner.

Apart from the “hurry up and wait” one always has to do in the hospital, the anesthesia (highly recommended) and the procedure took all of 20 minutes – and so far, so good, now some five hours thereafter.

Mind you, I do believe the builder is now doing a last run through to spot any problems in Krakatoa-ville.

Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at