Part 3 – What Hath My Urologist Wrought?
As I ambled out of the procedure room (ambling really is the least testicle-intensive form of locomotion), I had a sinking feeling. Had I endured the worst part of this process or was I cruising headlong into it? In either case I was pretty sure I didn’t have to worry. After all, I just had surgery on the most tender and vulnerable portion of the male anatomy. Any doctor with even the slightest inkling of humanity would have to send me home with a caravan of prescription pain pills appropriate for equine dentistry.
By the time I reached the car I started to realize that the odds of even getting a Vicodin prescription were becoming steadily less favorable. Yeah, I was a little slow on the uptake, but remember that I was probably still in shock. Apparently the buzzkills of the medical establishment intended to leave me with the cold comfort of over-the-counter drugs. Needless to say, I was upset. I not only was missing out on a legal high, but I wasn’t going to be able to make my favorite comfort food:
Bacon-wrapped Vicodin is a great starter for opiate-heavy main courses.
My family did not disappoint with their warm homecoming. My kid hit me with a battery of questions on the procedure, probably because she was granted temporary license to say “penis” as much as she wanted. My dogs pounced and jumped on me playfully, though I can’t be sure they didn’t sniff out my condition and attempt to assert pack dominance by alpha-rolling me. I even had a Get Well card waiting for me from my friend Mike :
I knew it was important to not do anything testicle-intensive, so I sat down to watch some TV. This proved to be more difficult than expected.
“It’ll never heal if you don’t stop playing with it, Mr. Cheesman…”
Since channel surfing was off the table, I reviewed the doc’s take-home paperwork. It was a pretty run-of-the-mill list of common sense warnings (“Please do not let household cats swat at your testes for at least 7 days”). It didn’t get particularly interesting until the section on possible complications, provided you substitute “interesting” for “horrifying beyond all sense and reason.”
Granted, there are zero medical conditions I’m okay being unleashed on my balls, but these sounded particularly nasty. The actual diagnoses were almost immaterial, since each was just another cocktail variation made with swelling and/or leakage. Luckily in my feeble state the computer was too far away for me to run a Google image search on “sperm granuloma”, which would have only cemented my terror.
No one needs to see this.
The remaining paperwork had considerably less nightmarish news to deliver:
POST VASECTOMY SEMEN SAMPLE COLLECTION
It takes between 10 – 20 ejaculations, 6 – 8 weeks on average, for you to become sterile. After that, ejaculate once in the cup provided. The sample must be 4 hours fresh when you submit it to the lab.
This was hilarious to me on multiple levels. I especially loved the reminder to not get creative with the delivery of semen to their lab. I imagine all it took was one guy sauntering up to the reception desk with his sample in a zip-tied condom before they had to tighten up regulations. Further, whoever established those guidelines didn’t have much of a grasp on the male libido. Allotting 6 to 8 weeks just to accomplish ten or more ejaculations? Even in my fragile state I managed to knock out a round during my ride in the parking structure elevator.
I was surprised to find they didn’t provide anything for me to track my “progress” to sterility in all that paperwork, but where some see a gross oversight I visualized an opportunity. Let me introduce you to the Intertilometer. Think of it as a masturbation Advent calendar, except at the end you get NO baby Jesus:
Yes, those are tiny boxes of Kleenex. I thought of everything.
With the snipping finally behind me and days of bed rest ahead, there was little else to do but capture the details of my recovery. I decided to start a diary to note every gruesome detail and occasionally speculate if my doctor liked me “like, more than than a friend”. It was the best way to keep memories fresh…and it if happened to assist in future lawsuits for “Emotional Distress” all the better. Here’s how it broke down:
My balls were punctured today. How are you?
I spent most every waking moment today sitting on a block of ice. I don’t know if the goal here is to prevent swelling or encourage my balls to take up permanent residence in my abdomen. But at least it doesn’t hurt much.
I woke up to realize that I had bled through my gauze into my underwear. As a precaution I am applying direct pressure to the incision site and trying to keep my balls elevated. The latter is easier said than done without some form of pulley system.
I’m a little sore, but its not remotely approaching the worst case scenarios I had envisioned. It’s kind of like the persistent sensation of being kicked in the groin an hour prior – not particularly painful, but you can still feel their resentment.
Dirty Diana (NAH!),
Bled into my underwear again. Let me say that you simply never EVER get used to seeing blood down there ((link to “down there” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OP4cZM-Y54)). I’m beginning to suspect they operated with a pizza cutter down there. I may have to set up a nannycam in my bed to make sure no one is taking opportunistic crotch stabs on me.
It looks like pain I’ve been waiting for is just not coming. It appears I’m going to walk away from this largely unscathed, apart from my vas deferens of coruse. Maybe I’ll go celebrate with some mountain biking or perhaps some step aerobics since I’m invincible.
Looking back I have to admit that nothing hurt nearly as much as I figured it would. As a patient and a total sissy, I am relieved. As a comedy writer, I’m a little disappointed because my pain would probably be more hilarious to you. I wasn’t even sure if I should share this story, but given the way my wife has been laughing at me through this whole process I thought others might enjoy it.
To close this out I should really thank my vas deferens, the little unsung heroes of my balls. Without them I wouldn’t have the family I cherish or the 4 others scattered around the continental U.S. that I never speak of. Despite years of scrotal trauma courtesy of karate sparring sessions, they validated my potency when it mattered most. I’m gonna miss you guys.
Enough chit-chat. I’ve got some medically-mandated masturbating to do!
Ian Cheesman is not only TSJ’s beer expert, but he also has a B.S. in physiology and neuroscience. He wants you to know that he is fully aware of the differences between testicles and vas deferens, despite the occasional comedic hyperbole suggesting otherwise. If you’re the kind of person that feels compelled to correct factual inaccuracies in comedy articles, he’ll happily direct you over to the comment threads over at Cracked.com. He knows some of the editors over there and can confirm that they absolutely love it.
All the artwork that looked awesome is courtesy of Michael “Vectormonkey“ Decerbo . The shitty stuff was done by Ian as usual.
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