Shortly after surgery to remove the placenta on the Friday, I suddenly realised I needed the loo! I panicked as I knew I wasn’t able to move, so how was this going to be possible? Would they fit a catheter? Yuk! Or would I have to use a bed pan, and if so, how? Perhaps I should just wet myself…that would be easier and I’m sure they would forgive me given current circumstances. I held on to it for as long as possible, hoping it would go away, but it did not.
My husband went to find a midwife. Typical, there was no one around. He said we should push the red buzzer, but oh no, Wimpy Mum did not want to disturb or inconvenience anyone (even though I was fit to burst). I had to wait an agonising further 20 minutes before Miriam appeared with a bed pan (basin). A rather Starship Enterprise looking object with a lid. It was definitely going on a voyage with me where no one had ever gone before.
Miriam helped me to lift my bottom and rest it on the opening to the pan, whilst my husband looked on. She covered over my legs with a blanket, I imagine to make it more dignified for me. I laughed to myself a little. Most of the labour ward and people in surgery had seen me exposed in all my glory that day. They had seen me inside out and knew what I’d had for breakfast that day and the day before probably. Along with my husband, of course. A blanket over my legs whilst I pissed into a spaceship was not really going to make much difference after this morning’s show piece.
I couldn’t go. I physically couldn’t go. As desperate as I was, my body was refusing to open my bladder into that pan. I’ve always had this since a young age, whereby I could never pee in the sea or in a swimming pool, for instance. And come on, don’t pretend you haven’t done it or at least tried? Me though, nah, it doesn’t happen. I guess I’m just too much of a lady… (stop laughing).
Miriam walked to the sink, and started to run the taps. As the sound of rushing water filled my ears, I suddenly realised I was ‘going’. And I kept going, and going… and going… and going some more. It was like that scene from an Austin Power’s film where he asks to use the toilet and goes for the longest wee in history. Except my wee was even longer! Like World Record style longer. I started to panic thinking we would need another bed pan, or two, at this rate.
And where had all this urine come from? I’d not drunk anything since 8pm the night before and it was now 3pm the following afternoon. What exactly had they been pumping through my veins all night and where was all this fluid coming from??
Miriam came to see if I’d finished. I thought I had so she began to take the bed pan away. Oh no you don’t! More wee!!! It was as though my bladder were playing games with me. Sniggering at me each time I thought I’d finished and my bladder produced a little more. This happened several times until eventually, everything came to a stop. I honestly felt like I’d just run a marathon. And as Miriam lifted the bed pan, her eyes widened and she exclaimed in French, “Wow, that’s a lot of wee!”
Well thanks. Do I get a medal?
Following the blood patch on the Saturday, I was bed bound for 24 hours, which meant no trips to the toilet. It was bed pan only for me. And with all the fluid they were pumping through me to support the blood patch in reducing my headache and swelling, it had to come out sometime. And it did. Almost every half hour I was calling to have the Starship Enterprise come and take my wee away. Beam it up, Scotty.
So there you have it. Tales of the Bed Pan. That good old classic fairy tale. Tell it to your kids sometime. No, please don’t, really.
But if like me, you were completely new to the bed pan experience, I hope this ‘enlightens’ you and brings a little light to any future vertical urinations you may encounter.