Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Totally Tubeless

This is the next in a series of pieces on my post-op progress following prostate cancer surgery two weeks ago (12/5). If you’re squeamish, go to the next blog.

Yesterday they took out my catheter. Some people call this a foley—I don’t know why, but I’m pretty sure the department store doesn’t appreciate the word association. From now on, “let’s go to Foley’s” will not have pleasant connotations for me.

Actually, after hearing all the dire predictions of how uncomfortable it was going to be to pull several inches of rubber tubing out of the end of my penis--and remembering what the doctor said just before he removed my abdominal drain tube (“you’re not going to like this much”)--the moment was almost anti-climactic.


There was one, last sharp twinge, deep inside, as he said, “I’ll just twist this (the catheter) to loosen it up first…” followed by a distinct burning sensation as the horrid invader snaked out of my snake. I could almost smell the burning rubber…

It also helped that my bride and World’s Greatest Nurse had doped me up with sufficient levels of doctor-recommended Vicodin, Motrin, and Xanax prior to the procedure. Don’t laugh; I had asked the nurse if they happened to have any Nitrous Oxide on hand.

So I no longer feel like a three-legged piano stool. Now, I’m into indoor field & track and water sports: Can I make it from the bed to the bathroom before my weakened, tortured sphincter loses the battle with fluids that have built up in my bladder in the past three minutes--when I last leaped towards the Great Ceramic Pedestal?

My next challenge is to regain control of those magical muscles in my nether regions that control such things. (A visitor tonight commented I looked like a King, propped up in bed, writing this piece.)

Given the content, I feel more like the Prince of Tides.

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