I had back surgery on Wednesday, the 18th. The plan was for me to go home a few hours after the surgery but there was a complication and I stayed three days. I had a cerebral spinal fluid leak (CSF) that required I remain flat on my back that, in turn, meant I couldn't get up to go to the bathroom. I was receiving IV fluids that meant I needed to get up to go to the bathroom. Well, I became quite proficient in using the dreaded bedpan. The main problem with this ingenius device is that there was more outflow than anticipated and my bedpan regularly overflowed. I asked the nurse if she had a bigger one for me to use so she wouldn't have to change the pad on my bed or my gown with each bedpan use. She said she did and went to get one.
Well, she came in with what looked like a dishpan in comparison to the smaller version I had been overflowing. I got tickled when she proudly presented it to me. I began to laugh hysterically as I tried to maneuver myself on this giant bedpan. She had a look on her face that seemed to be saying, "I wish they hadn't closed the psych ward. This patient may need to go there." I laughed and laughed and laughed as I tried to envision what I looked like perched on this Big Bertha Bedpan. My mother-in-law called as I was finishing, and I got tickled all over again and could barely speak to her. I think she probably would have agreed with my nurse, "she's nuts."
The next day I was finally allowed to get up and use a bedside toilet and, as liberating as that was, it somehow didn't have the same sense of accomplishment as using the bedpan. The following day I was told to use the restroom in the hospital room. When I went in there for the first time I saw my old friends: the junior bedpan and Big Bertha. There they sat, all alone and unneeded, and I told them "thank you" for helping me during my time of need and then patted the flusher handle on the real toilet and got back in bed. Grateful and relieved.