The short version, for squeamish readers, or those easily offended by references to the human “naughty bits” is neatly summed up by this one word: OUCH!
I got a vasectomy Thursday morning. It is now Saturday evening, and it is becoming more unpleasant by the hour!
This ridiculous and painful state of affairs was set in motion several months ago, when my wife, pregnant with our second child, expressed a desire not to have to go through the birthing process again. I can’t say I blame her, as she was facing her second Cesarean.
The whole pregnancy/childbirth thing just seems crazily, ludicrously painful to me. There is NO FLIPPING WAY I would ever, ever, ever willingly let another person grow inside me and burst me open to come into the world.
Besides, as we all know, the exit ramp just isn’t wide enough for the goods to pass through without a struggle. If you can easily pass a golf ball through your nose, then I suppose giving birth will be no big deal for you, otherwise, prepare for some pain.
Being a guy, I don’t have to sweat pregnancy and childbirth. But I am half of the baby making machinery. So when it came time to discuss what we were going to do to prevent making anymore little screamers, a vasectomy came up as one of the options.
Since my wife was getting a cesarian, she could have had her tubes tied once she was cut open. Our doctor even mentioned this to us, and suggested it as a viable birth control option.
But at this point we had decided that a vasectomy was preferable, as tube tying MAY have complications, and, since my reproductive glands were external, my procedure would be quick and painless. (Ha, ha, ha!)
When we told her this, the doctor readily agreed, adding that she is an advocate for vasectomies. Besides, we had been assured by all my wife’s nursing friends that vasectomies were, “no big deal”.
I think it is important to note that every professional we had discussed vasectomies with at this point were WOMEN.
Still believing that, “vasectomies were no big deal”, I went ahead and scheduled the operation. I met with the doctor beforehand, and it sounded to me like I was in for nothing more than a colonoscopy or a tooth removal.
Besides the usual precautions, (no food after midnight the day before), there were no red flags to indicate I was in for some trauma, other than the unusual requirement to bring some sort of “scrotal support”, which I guess is medical terminology for a jock strap.
I was so confident that this wasn’t going to hurt much, I had even planned to go to work the next day.
My attitude began to change when, a few days before the operation, I mentioned to a co-worker I would be out on Thursday. When I told him why, he got a big grin on his face.
It turns out he too had gotten a vasectomy a few years ago, and he still had memories of laying on his couch all weekend with a pack of frozen peas on his crotch. His version of the pain level associated with a vasectomy was nothing like that given to me by the female nurses!
Concerned, I called the doctor’s office and asked them if I should plan on taking off Friday as well as Thursday. The nurse was a little circumspect in her answer, but it basically came down to this: you will be in no condition to work Friday! So I planned to be absent from work for two days instead of one.
The big day arrived. My wife drove me to the clinic, I was prepped, put under, cut, then in due time woke up again. I hurt a wee bit in my private parts, but nothing outrageous. Still a bit wobbly from the anesthesia, a nurse helped me get dressed and to our car, where my wife was waiting.
Once home I mostly rested and napped for the rest of the day.
Friday, yesterday, the cuts on my scrotum were a bit sore. I had stitches in places where no guy wants to ever get stitches, and they rubbed against anything I wore. Worse yet, I was severely constipated. I had not pooped since Wednesday, and my stomach muscles seemed tense.
I suppose this was a reaction the nerves were having to the trauma so near to my testicles. As guys know, a kick in the nuts causes extreme abdominal tensing and pain. So now, in addition to a sore sack, I was cramping up.
I’ll spare you any Rabelaisian details of the struggles I endured attempting to move my bowels, other than to say that I’ve gained a new appreciation for prune juice.
The good news is that, so far, the cuts themselves seem to be healing nicely. My wife has the unenviable job of applying the antibiotic ointment to them, which she is doing most excellently. The problem I’m facing now is the swelling. Using the old twigs and berries euphemism, the berries are well on their way to becoming plums. This is not a pleasant sensation, so say the least!
I was given a prescription for percocet, which, for something that is “no big deal”, I considered a bit over the top. But I can tell you that if these guys don’t start to return to their normal size soon, I’m going to start hitting those pills!
I suppose from a purely medical perspective a vasectomy really is not a major or difficult operation. The problem is all the darn nerve endings clustered in the testicles, all of them ready to overreact at the slightest threat to the sperm making machines.
It’s a pain to have to put up with all this pain for two little snips, but I still believe it was the better choice than tying my wife’s tubes. Besides, since she had to suffer through two Cesareans, I suppose it was my turn to “take one for the team.”