Sometimes you just have to laugh. You know, when something goes wrong you need to step back and assess the situation and decide to be mad or not. I find that when I do that, less things make me mad than ever and sometimes I find things pretty funny, at least to me.
It all started yesterday as I was preparing to irrigate for the day. Irrigation is the way I go to the bathroom since my ostomy surgery. I wrote about it previously.
I was prepping for the irrigation as I normally do. I got my supplies out from the other room. I set up my little garbage bag for paper towels and such and I grabbed the water vessel used to hold the water I irrigate with. During all of this I had the water running to get it up to “blood” temperature.
Once the water is a good temperature I start to fill the water bag. I do this in the sink because that’s what I’ve always done since I started. The thing is, this is a new water bag that I switched to. The old one is fine, but I’m travelling back East soon and wanted to have a second one for travel in case something got lost or damaged.
This new bag is shaped much different than the old bag and doesn’t fit as well into the sink, making it difficult to fill up to the 1500cc mark. I get the bag filled to the point where the water is about 1.5 inches below the mark. So I try to re-position and fold the bag to get the opening under the faucet. I get it just right and fill the bag. I pull the bag out to see my progress and it’s still 1.5 inches or so below the mark. I was a little confused but figured the water must have been much lower in the bag than I had thought. So I do it again. Same thing. A third time, same result again. I was getting confused.
You’ve probably figured out what’s going on at this point. I had yet to make the mental leap. I think it’s important for a little more back story to help explain why.
One of the side effects of the chemo I was taking is peripheral neuropathy. These effects can last up to two years or in some cases, never go away. I have been slowly getting better, but I still have some issues with my feet and fingers. For the most part I have adapted to the lack of feeling and don’t think much of it.
Unfortunately, having the ability to feel in my feet really would have helped my situation because as I was standing there pondering the physics of water filling a vessel, I was standing in a bigger and bigger pool of water. It took me four tries of filling up the water bag before I realized the valve at the bottom was open and water was running down the tube onto the floor. The bathroom floor was about three quarters covered in water and filling up rapidly.
In my panic, I turned off the faucet, but there was still a liter worth of water in the bag, making its way to the floor. I finally closed the valve on the bag and assessed the situation. Water all over the place. Happily it was just water because what I’m normally dealing with when I irrigate is poop! Two bath towels and a Sham-Wow later, the situation was under control and I could get back to irrigating.
I think that the whole event could have soured my day, but the image of me taxing my brain cells on why the bag wasn’t filling with water, all the while standing in an increasing pool of water makes me chuckle. It was one of those times I just had to laugh.