How I learned an enema is not just something in Carry On films – Susan Morrison
This was not good. Emma, one of the brilliant colorectal nurses, called me and said you’d best come in so we can have a look at you.
I was halfway to the Western before I remembered that I hadn’t shaved my legs. I thought better of whipping out the Ladyshave whilst waiting at the traffic lights, and figured they’d seen worse. Well, it is an extra layer of insulation, isn’t it?
A team of cheery people in masks poked about and a lovely young final-year medical student took a load of blood, and managed to do it painlessly. I was sent off for an X-ray and back they came.
Well, they said, your bowel has got a bit of a blockage. Best get that clear.
“Right oh,” said I. “What’s the plan?”
“Enema,” they said.
I burst out laughing. “Seriously,” I said? “This is a thing? I thought it only happened in Carry On movies.”
Dear reader, it is real. The nurse, still cheery, bounced back with a very large box. Given the adventures of the last few years, I am becoming used to medicine names such as capacitabine, cyclizine and fragmin.
But this treatment seemed to be called, quite simply, Cleanse.
“Would you like to change into a gown?” said the nurse, slapping those gloves on. As an aside, why do they snap them gloves with such passion? It's a noise I bet some kinky people would pay good money to hear.
“Do I need a gown?” I said.
Even though she had a mask on, I know she grinned. She was right about the gown. Made life a whole lot easier than a pair of jeans, let me tell you.
Speed was very much of the essence. By the time we finished, I felt like one of those cut-out dress-up dolls of my girlhood – distinctly two-dimensional, but much much better.