Sometimes when we are confronted with a life-changing reality, we get stuck on the small things. It’s the same when a bunch of bad things happen and we take them in stride and then we spill water on our white shorts and react like it’s the end of the world. The straw that tipped the camels back. Whatever you want to call it, I believe we are all guilty of this on some level.
For me, in relation to having a total colectomy to result in an ileostomy, it was finding out that they were going to put a catheter in during the surgery. Funny, right? Cut me open? No problem. Remove my colon? PLEASE! Wear a bag full of poop forever? Sure! (The reality of that would hit me later, but at the time, anything was better than the pain and ill health I was experiencing.) “And then we’ll put in a catheter…”. Wait, what?! No thank you, please tell the surgeon I don’t want that.
It’s almost comical to look back at how much I freaked out about the catheter. In my defense, all I knew about catheters was an imaginary visual of how they work and where they go on a guy – which sounds incredibly painful. I didn’t even think girls could have catheters (yes, I’m admitting that – it’s embarrassing). What I failed to realize until much later, was that they put it in while you’re knocked out, and more importantly, that when you get out of abdominal surgery, getting up to go to the bathroom is the last thing you want to do. After surgery, I was so grateful that they had not listened to my “no catheter” request!
What was the small thing that rocked your boat?