When I saw my doctor last week, she gave me a bag of these little self-catheter devices. The nurse taught me how to use them. The way it works is like this: 1st I try to pee. That lasts a second or two. Then I grab the little self-cath, some lube and a make up mirror. Suffice to say, I’ve learned a lot more about female anatomy than I ever expected and I’ve gotten really comfortable checking out my own under carriage. Wow…I just wrote that.
She also prescribed me a drug called “Urispas.” When she explained it, it sounded like “Euro Spaz” which seemed a lot like a jerk I went to school with in France! Urispas is a muscle relaxant of sorts for the bladder. Apparently with the urinary tract infection and all the foley catheters (the kind I had before, which is a larger tube semi-permanently installed in my bladder with a bag hanging down my leg to catch the pee), my urethra and bladder were really inflamed and irritated. My bladder muscle(s?) were/are in spasm and all that has added up to excruciating pain when peeing and not much coming out.
The idea is that if I can get to the point where I can pee enough on my own, I won’t need the caths any longer. Everyday I seem to be getting closer and it is less painful. Hallejuah!
I was really starting to worry that I’d have to have this surgery reversed and done again. Fortunately, it seems that won’t be necessary anyway. My lovely doctor told me that even if the mesh tape is too tight, causing my retention issues, we would simply have the tape cut. But we wouldn’t do that until 4-6 weeks after the surgery, at which point, my body will have built up enough scar tissue around the tape that it will do the work of the tape! So I get to be “continent” without any artificial assistance. Amazing.
To celebrate all these tiny successes and the permanent removal of foley catheters from my life (HOPEFULLY FOREVER!), I’ve been out walking. It’s nice to be able to wear workout tights and go commando as the good Lord intended (I may be a little too “continent” but at least I’m not incontinent!). The doctor made me promise not to run, lift my children or do anything resembling a squat until she gives me the all-clear (normally at 6 weeks) but she encourages me to walk, even power-walk.
So yesterday and today, I got out and covered 4 miles each day. Our crazy NorCal weather has changed from sunny and 70 to cloudy and 50. We’re still having a massive drought, but now it just looks less inspiring outside. But my walks have been lovely. No rain means no trail wash-outs in the woods!
I’m grateful and hopeful that this experience will be fruitful in the end. In the meantime, if you’re around Walnut Creek and want to take a morning walk, I’m available each morning for the next 3 weeks!