Lisa Scottoline: A do-it-yourself colonoscopy

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A do-it-yourself colonoscopy?

I get lots of junk mail.

But now I’m getting mail about my junk.

No kidding.

Fair warning: This is going to get personal, which you could have guessed.

Unless you’re new around here.

That was a trigger warning for middle-aged people.

Because what I got in the mail was a do-it-yourself colonoscopy kit.

I know, right?

So much is wrong with that sentence, I don’t know where to start.

So let me back up.

Heh, heh.

And before I start kidding around, let me say that I understand completely that colorectal cancer is a deadly, horrible disease.  Everybody should get tested for it, and, thank God, it can be detected early.  That speech should go without saying, and rest assured that I’m just a nice lady who’s trying to make you laugh.

So, to return to the point, yesterday I went to my mailbox, which was stuffed with catalogs I didn’t want, fliers for products I’ll never order, and offers for services I don’t need.  In other words, junk, junk, junk.  I toss it directly into the recycling bin.  The companies should address the mail to my recycling bin and save us all the time.

The last thing in my mailbox was a thick envelope I didn’t recognize, so I opened it, and inside were several letters and a small plastic vial with a mint-green top.  The cover letter was from my health insurance company, and it read:

Dear Valued Member,

Enclosed is an at-home fecal immunochemical test (FIT) for colorectal cancer screening.

Wait, what?

My health insurance company values me?

That’s a surprise.

They’ve been giving me the shaft for years.

Anyway, who knew there was such a thing as a do-it-yourself colonoscopy kit?

I love to do things myself, but there are exceptions to every rule.

I know people whose head is up their ass, but I’m not one of them.

And I like to do things myself, but not my own colonoscopy.

What will they send me next?

A knife for heart surgery?

Duct tape to plug up that leaky valve?

Also, I had no idea why I got mailed a do-it-yourself colonoscopy kit.  I hadn’t ordered it.  I like free things in the mail, but why is it never chocolate cake?  Or a credit toward my health insurance bill?

Then I realized that it was probably something they sent to people of a certain age.  For example, nobody’s sending me an at-home pregnancy kit.

Evidently, there’s a big difference between the age group for No. 1 and for No. 2.

If you follow.

I mean, Big Brother really is watching.

With a microscope.

Where the sun don’t shine.

It’s spooky to think that strangers are keeping track of my colon.

It’s not the deep state. It’s the deep, deep state.

I wonder if they know that I gained three pounds.  Or that I still take a safety pin to the occasional zit.

You read that right.

Dr. Scottoline is in.

And it works.

Meanwhile, if they send you a do-it-yourself colonoscopy kit when you’re 60 years old, what do they send you when you’re 90?

A coffin?

Anyway, you get the idea.  Evidently, I was supposed to go to the bathroom, read the directions, and give myself a colonoscopy.

How did we get here?

You know it started in grocery stores, after they started making us check ourselves out.

It was a slippery slope, folks.

We should have nipped that in the bud.

Or the butt.

But here it is, biting us in the you-know-what.

Anyway, according to the instructions, I was supposed to “deposit my stool sample” on the “supplied collection paper,” which is a euphemism for the high-end toilet paper they sent in the kit.

Meanwhile, are you still with me?

Or did you barf already?

That was how I felt.

I pick up dog poop all day.  But my own, I generally like to keep at arm’s length.

Well, evidently after I collect the sample, I have to put it in the vial, which would be a neat trick because the vial is really small.

If you’ve ever seen the inside of one of my jelly jars, you can see the problem.

And there’s no knife to wipe off on the rim.

And we ain’t talking strawberry jam.

Then, evidently, I’m supposed to put the vial into a red biohazard bag.

I would’ve preferred pink, but nobody asked.

Or, more accurately, brown.

We oldsters need all the visual cues we can get.

And then I’m supposed to mail this lovely package back in another envelope they provide.

Which is the good news.

I get to send my health insurance company back what they’ve been sending me.

You’ve got mail!

Look for Lisa and Francesca’s latest humor collection, “I’ve Got Sand in All the Wrong Places,” and Lisa’s new domestic thriller, “One Perfect Lie.” Also, look for Lisa’s new Rosato & DiNunzio novel, “Damaged,” coming Aug. 15. lisa@scottoline.com.