This is definitely a TMI kind of post. But if you’re human, or at least a woman, you’ll be able to relate…even if you won’t admit to it.
So, stop reading now or forever hold your peace.
Today’s topic? Urine. And I’ll tell you right now, I’m gonna say the word urine a LOT in this piece so brace yourself. Also, if you are Canadian, you are hearing the word urine pronounced yur-in as you read it. If you’re British, it’s more of a yur-ine sound. So Canadians, I recommend you read/hear it in British for a higher entertainment level. Brits, trust me…to us your way is just weird.
To be more specific, I’ll be speaking today, to the act of trying to catch urine for the doctor. I say ‘catch’ for a reason.
So here we are in pandemic mode, and after being in self isolation for a month, up pop some problematic symptoms for me. It’s no surprise really. With an average of one medical appointment or test a week thanks to my chronic stuff with a sprinkling of acute randomness tossed in there too, avoiding the need for my doctor during this time is a fantasy about as realistic as Boris Johnson and Donald Trump simultaneously getting a good hair cut. (Among many other things I dream of them changing, but today is about urine, not politics.)
It’s Monday morning and I need a doctor. But…pandemic. After a phone call to reception and a returned call for a phone consult with my doctor, we agreed to start with a urine sample to rule out some things there, and hopefully avoid me needing a trip to the clinic.
[She described the process and safe-guards they’ve put in place for people like me – those at higher risk for trouble with Covid-19 – and I feel pretty comfortable with going in now, if the need arises. Comfortable – minus the part of the plan that us risky folk have to go in SO EARLY that no other staff or patients have been in the building yet on that day after the sensitization process the night before, and it’s the doctor herself who would let me in. When I say ‘so early’, we’re talking, like, 7 a.m. ish and I feel like throwing up thinking about it. I feel a little like throwing up anyway thanks to whatever current bodily stew is brewing within, so what’s a little ‘early morning aversion’ nausea on top of the current nausea anyway, right? Seriously though, I am thankful for the precautions they are taking and it’s an honour (?) to be cared for as special, thanks (?) to being risky business.]
So back to urine.
Thankfully, I try to always be prepared and keep a urine sample pot in my medical supplies at home. Also thankfully, I have a friend who is not afraid of a bit of urine and was willing to drop it off for me. (Don’t go thinking she’s a hero and all that. She was headed to town to get some groceries for her lunch and beyond anyway. Although…someone else’s urine. Yeah. She’s a hero.)
Now. The urine pick-up guy collects these samples for the lab at 12:30 pm and 4:30 pm. I had an hour and a half to get the sample to my friend before the lunchtime deadline. I began to drink. And drink. And drink. (WATER. Sheesh. It is morning!)
An hour had passed and I had zero urge to expel. Still, time was running low.
I got in position.
The pot (container) they provide for this procedure has the girth of a (banned) plastic drinking straw. Is this when I state that I am not a man? Years ago I purchased a she-wee for this very purpose but I am only just remembering that now. NOW is not helpful.
I did however have the fortitude to use a larger container with the plan to transfer the urine over.
So there I hovered. And hovered. Oh, Oh! It’s coming! Wait. Nope. But there…yes! It’s coming! I feel about two drops being expelled and one of them landed in the bowl because…tiny splash. Nooooooo!
You’re thinking, I thought you said you used a larger container, Susie?
Right. Well, as I hovered and squeezed and my legs shook and my abs cramped up I too wondered, why am I using such a small larger container?? This was a job for my metal bread mixing bowl. (Ha! As IF I bake bread. But I could in that big bowl.) Instead I used a stevia container with the girth of an espresso coffee mug from Italy. So basically…a really large (banned) plastic drinking straw.
Time is running out and my friend starts to message. Here is our conversation via text, verbatim:
“The clock is ticking (grandfather clock emoji; egg timer emoji; alarm clock emoji; rain drop emoji; multi raindrop emoji; toilet emoji)”
“Try harder (Squinty laughy cry-y emoji; cry-y laughy emoji;)
“Would tears work? Those would come more easily. Seriously, you’d think my body was subconsciously rebelling knowing I’m about to get drug tested for the custody battle of my child!”
“Hahaha love how bodies work (winky face emoji)
Try the tears. I’ll just explain at the doctor’s. (winky face emoji)
The longer you wait with peeing, the longer I’m starving.
Maybe the pressure helps. (Cry laughy emoji x 3)”
“Oh yeah. Really helpful.. (Eye roll emoji)”
Finally she left me alone for two minutes…two minutes to spare, that is. It was 12:15 and she had to drive to town and then stand in line outside the doctor’s office and wait to go inside. (I did NOT factor that last part in to the pee/wee time schedule.)
You should know that peeing should NOT have been a problem for me. I can usually wee any time I want, any time of the day and sometimes three times at night. I can pee in the doctor’s office – no white coat syndrome there. I can wee while sleepwalking. (Although I sit on these occasions, but I can’t promise I don’t mistake the spare bed next door as I sit.) I can pee in the bushes with a hundred Canadian mosquitoes eating my buttocks for lunch. I can pee in the bushes with a hundred Canadian mosquitoes eating my buttocks for lunch with an audience of three dogs whilst I am eating lunch! (Well, I’ve never actually ate lunch while this took place, but I believe in myself.)
Three large glasses of water chugged long over an hour before produced precisely ½ an inch of ur-ine. A HALF AN INCH!! And this was gifted to me in four tiny drippy installments spread out over the hour. (What time should I have put on the pot label for ‘time of collection’? When I started or when I ended?? BIG DIFFERENCE there!)
I hit the voice message button on WhatsApp and yelled, “I DON’T KNOW IF IT’S ENOUGH BUT COME COME COME!!! I lunged out of the loo and ran to the door and…
She was already sitting in her car outside. (Hero? Or just hungry. But someone else’s urine? Yeah…Hero.)
I don’t know if we beat the urine pick-up guy and I don’t know if half an inch was enough for the job and my friend couldn’t ask because…covid. (Line-ups and plastic shields and stressed reception and it sounds like no one dared breathe to talk. So we’ll see.
I wanna give a huge shout-out to my friend, whom I won’t identify by name to protect her dignity? Reputation? Pride? (I’ll tag her below.) I WILL call her my Best Ur-ine Hero Friend Forever, from here on out.
So now we wait. And in the meantime…
I REALLY need to pee! (Not even joking.)
P.S. I didn’t tag her below
P.P.S I don’t have a child.
P.P.P.S. I am not fighting for custody of the child I don’t have.
P.P.P.P.S. I don’t do drugs.
P.P.P.P.P.S. Actually, yes I do. But they’re legal and I have chronic and acute stuff so I DARE you to judge.)
P.P.P.P.P.P.S. That is not really pee pictured above. If it is, I probably have more to worry about than I originally thought.