It#039;s not nice for Mama to go hungry

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 29, 2006

The best laid plans of mice and men often take a detour along the way. Last Friday, my dear little white-haired mama was slated to have a colonoscopy at 7 a.m. At Stabler’s Hospital.

We figured we’d be done and out of there by noon.

As it turned out, we didn’t leave the hospital that night until around 9:30 p.m.

Emergencies are something no one knows are going to happen, and there were three such cases that showed up on the able Dr. McGowin’s radar Friday.

In the meantime, Mama, who had been well and truly &uot;cleaned out&uot; by her pre-op procedures, was fantasizing about murdering a jar of peanut butter.

Visions of Cheetos danced in her head.

My sister Debbie and I felt pretty guilty even mentioning food or drink in front of her. When we returned from the hospital cafeteria, Mama wistfully asked, &uot;Did you girls have a good lunch?&uot;

Indeed we did, but we didn’t want to elaborate.

It’s not nice to do that to your starving, thirsty 81-year-old mom. She was already bothered enough, worrying about her little ol’ backside showing in her hospital gown every time she had to venture to the bathroom.

Normally, she eats like a bird. But being denied any sustenance has Mama downright &uot;rumbly in the tumbly,&uot; as Winnie the Pooh used to say.

The Same Day Surgery staff looked after us well, and when the third emergency case went better than expected, Mama finally got wheeled back a little before seven.

She promised to behave herself, but, alas, her colon was not so forthcoming. Dr. McGowin was only able to scope a portion of it.

&uot;You had all those pockets of diverticulosis in your colon, and if I’d kept pushing, it could have meant a tear. Then you’re talking a colostomy – and I just like you too much to do that to you,&uot; the good doctor explained to my mom.

And so we’ll be back at the hospital sometime soon for Mama to undergo a barium enema. That way they can x-ray all of her colon and see just what else might be going on in there.

On Friday night, still giddy from the anesthesia and merrily sucking down pudding, gelatin, ice cream, juice and coffee, Mama was feeling no pain.

Sitting in the chair waiting to have her IV taken out, she giggled as she tapped her sock-clad feet on the floor.

&uot;I just feel I could jitterbug!&uot; she told me with a little girl’s grin.

Made me wish I’d had a little of the anesthesia, too.

After resting most of Saturday, she went back to church on Sunday morning and came to Cracker Barrel for lunch with Deb. We were delighted to see the ol’ girl polish off her country-fried steak and then enjoy a sample of the strawberry shortcake we three shared.

She’s got to enjoy those good eats while she can.

After all, it will soon be time for that darnned barium enema.

Angie Long is Lifestyles reporter for The Greenville Advocate. She can be reached at 382-3111 ext. 132 or via email at