Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: You Had Me At Colonoscopy


Well, 2016 has started off as a cracker of a year.

By 4 February I’d achieved some of my bucket list items: (1) Taken family on overseas holiday and forced children off social media and to enjoy relationships with parents and siblings. Tick. (2) Elope on beach in Hawaii with partner of eight years and aforementioned children thus avoiding the giant bullshit fiasco involved with a public wedding. Tick. (3) Have a colonoscopy.


There’s nothing like having a camera up your arse to take the shine off a good holiday. Although I do have a few extra snaps to add to my iPhotos, and possibly share on Facebook when something someone says shits me.

In case you are wondering. I didn’t need to have a colonoscopy. I elected to have it. I figured as 50 was on the horizon and as bowel cancer is one of those genetic fruits hanging from our family tree, that as a mother of five I should ensure I’m here for the long haul and not taken out by arse cancer.

It was quite an experience. My first day of fasting was on the 9-hour plane trip home. After eating overcooked, fatty, super-sized American food I figured that the colonoscopy preparation could be something of a ‘cleanse’.

Day one is ‘white food’. That means white bread, rice, pasta, chicken etc. Anything white. Kind of creepy. When the 150kg Hawaiian air steward came to serve my meal he was a little taken aback by the 6-foot white woman who asks, ‘Do you have any white food? I can only eat white food.’ By his sneer it was clear he had me marked as some sort of crazy KKK lady.

I tried to tell him it was for my arse test. But who wants to hear that when they’re eating? And really, it’s just a little too much information even for me. I had to give up and let him think I was a crazy racist.

Day two is when the real fun begins. The clear liquids and the pico prep. Or as I like to call it ‘India in the comfort of your own home’. That’s a 24-hour period when you literally lose your shit. I wasn’t game to sneeze. Or leave the house.

I was on the phone to my friend and had to end the call suddenly with ‘Oh my god, I have to go – NOW’. Too late.

Poor John. Not the post-wedding bliss he was expecting. It was like a colonic without a tap. After two days I was strangely hollow. I arrive at hospital to check in. It’s one of those times when you want to be anonymous.

My name for medicare purposes is Amanda Nolan. I should get away with it. The beaming woman in admissions smiles, ‘I know who you are!’ Fucking awesome. And it kept happening. Right up to the moment when I was lying on a bed with my naked arse hanging out the back of my flap.

It was undignifying.

Although it didn’t stop me from flirting with the handsome young anaesthetist. Well he kept asking me questions like my name, where I lived, my date of birth. It was clear he was cracking on. A cougar getting her colon checked. As I’m whisked off on my surgery trolley I say, ‘It’s all me me me. What about you? Where do you live?’ A look of terror came over his face which was strangely satisfying considering what I was about to endure.

‘Can you move your bottom as far to the edge of the bed?’ Ooh. I want to say No. But I don’t think it was a request I could refuse. Now was not a time to clench my butt cheeks. Someone could lose a finger. I count seven people in the audience as I push my white lady arse to the edge of the bed. Then someone lifts up my gown. So I’m covered and my arse is out.

I think, shouldn’t I be knocked out before the naked-arse-on-show humiliation routine? It was worse than getting a brazilian. In fact, I thought, this would be the time to get one. While I was unconscious. I think the young anaesthetist slipped me a mickey because I’m chatting away and then next thing I know I’m in recovery. ‘It went well,’ chirps the nurse. Really? I don’t think so. A girl’s first anal experience and not even a bunch of flowers. Just a video I’ll never see and a card telling me I don’t need to come back.

4 responses to “Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: You Had Me At Colonoscopy”

  1. Mal Ross says:

    Mandy, You are a genius. I look forward to you rant every week and love them. Thanks you brighten up my otherwise incredibly exciting life.
    ps good onya Echo for recognising he great talent

  2. Jon says:

    Your first colonoscopy is always your worst. Just be careful you don’t wake up with a five dollar bill in your hand though, that’s when you should worry about what’s been going on behind you.

  3. I too am booking in for a colonoscopy and whilst I pissed myself at your version of events Mandy… I’m now shitting myself even more! Ugh. The upside? Perhaps I won’t need to do the hideous prep thingy?

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