A few months ago I experienced something a few men get to… um… endure. For me it was a worst nightmare scenario since childhood that was finally realized. Well, fortunately, it was only a mild nightmare, but a nightmare nonetheless.
What I went through for about a month was the passing of a kidney stone(s). “The worst pain known to man,” as they say. “They” usually refers to women. When brought up around other men, they just cringe. Tiny (or not so tiny) sharp calcium rocks that have only one exit and makes peeing as much fun as removing metal shrapnel from you toes while running through a cactus field being chased by angry bees. I don’t know exactly what that feels like, but I’m sure it can’t feel too good nor is it very much fun. Well neither is peeing pointy rocks. But fortunately for me, like I said, it wasn’t a severe case.
According to a certified doctor (I checked), my case was mild. I didn’t meet all of the classic symptoms, but I met enough to figure out what was going on. The number one issue that caused the alarm was the fact my urine wasn’t the correct color of normal urine.
Before I jump into the toilet bowl with any future graphic descriptions, I must warn you Indoobians that this isn’t the “cleanest” of posts. Typically, I’m all for potty humor. “Poop” is one of my favorite words and possibly third favorite dinner conversation topic. I blame my father and most of my friends. But hey, it’s life, right? It’s only natural.
You see, at first, I thought I had a bad reaction to something I ate. One night I found myself making a pasta concoction out of things found in the kitchen: some salad seasoning, Italian salad dressing, and pasta, of course. A fun noodle looking kind of a pasta too. ‘Twas such a waste in retrospect. Anyway, I added too much dressing and it didn’t agree with me in several ways for the next day or so. To keep graphic descriptions to a minimum, I was in the bathroom for a different reason than the removal of a stone: diarrhea. Yum.
During this time of removal, I had been first taking a Gas-X type medicine before moving to Pepto Bismol. I am not a fan of the pink stuff. I’d rather tolerate the chewables than stomach that nasty pasty pink liquefied chalk. They say it is bubble gum flavor. They lie. I haven’t tried the cherry. Not interested. Anyway, I was unaware of one of the side effects when I woke up one morning to discover a blackened tongue. Granted, even if I was aware of this side effect, I still would’ve freaked out. My possible first thought was, “am I dying?” Or perhaps it wasn’t even a question… I’ve seen a lot of movies in my day, and discovering that the inside of your mouth is much, much darker than when you last saw it the night before meant that something bad was happening. Like a concentrated evil that was taking over your body or trying to kill you, making you fall apart or breaking you down to nothing. That’s what happened in the movies. Anyone who had manifested dark matter in them practically meant certain doom was to rain upon them before the movie ended… and they might not make it to the credits. So I proceeded to brush my teeth, I don’t know, twelve times that day? Focusing on my tongue, and then finally looking back to that Pepto to see what that had to say about my current ailment. (Darkening of the tongue is a side effect, so is darken of the stool… which is just as scary.)
On a side note, I kept in constant contact with my mother, informing her of each event as it happened. Most of the time she was comforting. Other times she giggled, had a face of shock and awe, or offered some motherly advice for what I should do.
So it had been about two days and I know that if you have a problem that requires the pink stuff, you need to drink plenty of fluids so you don’t get dehydrated. So hydrate I did. Unfortunately I hydrated so much one night—a night I had to be in class for about three hours—that I seriously could not wait to return home to relieve myself. I’m so glad the cops didn’t catch me that night speeding home. Getting pulled over is scary enough, but getting pulled over and wetting your pants at the same time?
The next day, I believed all was well. Since it was so long ago I didn’t exactly keep proper documentation, but I think it was a Wednesday, and all systems were a go. Until the blood appeared.
I felt immediately cold. I mean “cold” in the sense that I was scared to death. I know that’s never a good sign and I am told you are supposed to call your doctor immediately. Or at least go visit a clinic or something. And perhaps it’s a guy thing, but I seriously did not want to call or see a doctor for any reason whatsoever.
(Part 2 here…)