Hemorrhoid Surgery, And After
For the last few months, I've been working out a lot.
And like the last time I worked out a lot, I wound up developing a hemorrhoid from the excess pressure against my pelvic muscle floor.
The last one gradually went away on its own. This time, no such luck; not only did it not go away, it got bigger. It was huge. And painful. It was like having an extra testicle, in the wrong place.
I hooked up with a local surgeon. He poked and prodded in his pre-consultation and announced that he could take care of it right then and there.
"Do I get anesthetic?"
"Sure. But I'll warn you: the injection is going to hurt."
"A lot. You won't want to be my friend anymore."
He actually said that.
"I'd rather not be awake, then."
"We can do that, too --" he looked at his calendar "-- tomorrow!"
When you check in and prepare for surgery, they make a habit of asking you the same questions over and over and over again, just to see if you change your answers. It's all part of mitigating their risk. Assuming you confirm fourteen consecutive times that yes, you're having your right arm amputated, and no, you haven't had anything to eat that morning, you're less likely to suddenly remember it was supposed to be your left and that there was that splendid omelet on the way in.
So by the time they put my IV in and put me in my little rolling bed, I'd already had to confirm three times, "Yes, I'm here for... uh... a hmrd."
"I said, 'a hemorrhoid.'"
I tried to keep my voice down, because there were other patients in other pre-op bays and my God, what would they think? But my anesthesiologist had put something in my IV though to relax me, so by the time they got to sixth or seventh confirmation, my response was more along the lines, "WHY YES, I HAVE A GIANT HEMORRHOID! WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE IT!?"
The surgery was uneventful. One second I'm staring at the faceted lights in the O.R. and then, like blinking, I'm looking at the ceiling in Recovery.
The surgeon told me that he didn't just take care of that one big one, he also took care of a few more inside that might some day have caused problems. I pictured the inside of my rectum looking like Frankenstein's, criss-crossed sutures going every direction.
He gave me three prescriptions. "The first is a stool softener. Take two every day. You'll need it. The second is percoset, for the pain. The third is lorazepam, for the anxiety."
"I don't have anxiety."
This caused me some anxiety.
"See, some people worry about their first post-surgical bowel movement because it can sometimes be painful. But if you take your stool softeners and a good dose of percoset and lorazepam an hour before you go, everything should be fine in the end. Haha, see that? I made a joke."
I went home.
Not that you asked (but you are reading this story, so you deserve what you get), but I generally go about a week between poos. Today was poo day. And when I poo, it usually sort of sneaks up on me and all of a sudden it's like, "Hi there! Let's go NOW!"
So I wasn't really ready with the painkillers. The best I could do was down a couple of percosets on the way in.
I stripped down completely cuz... well, y'never know how you might have to contort, or whatever.
I sat down and tried to read an Onion article, but I knew this wasn't really going to be a sufficient distraction. So I bore down and cut loose.
Right about there is when the shrieking started. Thank God no one was home. The dogs ran off to hide somewhere. It felt like getting a digital rectal massage from Edward Scissorhands. It felt like someone pulling ten feet of barbed wire out of my bunghole.
And that was just the first volley. Once you get started, there's no turning back, right?
I felt around for something I could squeeze to take my mind off it. All I could reach was that Onion, which ended its life sort of wadded up.
Round two arrived, accompanied by something that was half-wail and half-laughter. Honestly, there was absolutely nothing funny about the pain on a personal level; but from an objective viewpoint, how do you not laugh at a naked, shrieking man flailing on the toilet?
By this point I was sweating profusely and feeling vaguely nauseous.
Fortunately, the pain largely subsided. It still hurt, but only in a vague, distant way as I finished the job.
I was not ready for the sight in the bowl.
I've seen dookie. I've seen blood. But nobody was ever meant to see that much dookie and that much blood all in the same place.
If I'd had the foresight, I'd have taken a picture to really give those guys at RateMyPoo something to talk about.
Instead, I cleaned up and went to lie down on the bed to whimper for a while.