While Peter had cancer and was receiving treatments either for the cancer or for the side effects caused by the treatments, he wrote on the www.caringbridge.org website. What a great service that website provides people battling a variety of illnesses.
Here is one of Peter’s stories about having to prepare for a procedure that required a clean colon.
The only real humor out of the last 48 hours was my decision to undertake the internal cleansing at my son’s house thirty miles away from my home. The plan was to start the process at 3:00 p.m. and be all done by 8:00 p.m. so I could pick up my brother from the airport on the way home. This plan was not approved with my sister-in-law who is a nurse. She was later horrified that anyone would attempt the cleansing process away from home. It was supposed to be a 20-minute process according to the pharmacist. Not with Peter. I drank the liquid at 3:10 p.m. and expected it would be just like a commercial for Drano. The hours ticked by with no hint of action. By 5:00 I was worried. By 6:00 I was frantic. Fortunately, my brother called and his flight was delayed so he would rent a car and see me in the morning. I still have to get home with a very messy time bomb in my gut. By 6:30 we had some action and it continued every 20 minutes until I had to leave. The 30 minute trip was potentially too long to spare the upholstery in the car. So, being ever clever and highly resistant to public humiliation, I whipped out a garbage bag, punched holes for my feet and pulled on an ersatz diaper. My son was laughing so hard he could not breathe and insisted there be no light on the front porch on my departure to reveal my very uncool behavior. I made it about 5 miles when there were rumblings. Ok, think about something else. Baseball, NAFTA, voter registration by party in rural Alabama, anything. It worked and I sailed on accelerating to cut the time. Then visions of me appearing on “Cops” started and I pictured myself getting out of the vehicle wearing a garbage bag diaper for the camera. That sounded worse than anything else so I slowed down. Then I started to think how I would get out of the car at home in case the diaper’s purpose was fulfilled. I couldn’t park on the inclined driveway for fear of leakage and couldn’t get out normally for the same reason. The proposed solution was to sort of fall out of the seat sideways and take my chances on leakage. Then I would sneak around the side of the house, remove the offending garments and knock on the glass sliding door. My wife was spared all of this as nothing untoward happened. She later told me that she had visions of a very unpleasant cleanup job on the vehicle in the morning.