I can sympathise Peg. My mother died of bowel cancer and my father of pancreatic cancer, both very young so I am very sensitive to the problem as well. It was not a pleasant thought thinking about a colonoscopy but I'm glad I had it done as I recently had a very large polyp removed before it turned cancerous. I feel I had a lucky escape and, in reality, the procedure was not all that bad. I'll be returning every year as I'm in the high risk group. I also had a very good friend who died recently in his 40's from bowel cancer and that shook me up a lot.
I think if one has a history in the family it's essential to be checked regularly, certainly after a certain age like 45. Good diet will help but won't necessarily prevent the problem if one is genetically predisposed.
Dave, all my very best wishes to you and Emma.
Also to all those is this thread who are suffering or who know someone who suffers from these painful bowel disorders.