My Mom called to check up on me last night and see how I was feeling. She does that. And to reward that action, I regaled her with the story of my upcoming play date with the toilet. Then she told me that was wrong and that the poop specimen was NOT to be fished out of the toilet bowl. She also said the doctors probably assumed that their patients had more common sense than to fish the poop out of the toilet water. She does that too. She said that if I did that, the sample would be completely contaminated with all sorts of things that may or not be mine. She’s a Mom so of course she’s right.
I was enlightened to the fact that when you have to give a poop sample (or stool sample as my Mom says although it seems lacking in descriptive power) you normally are given a whole kit that includes a cover to place over the toilet that you poop on and even handy wipes for cleaning up after wards along with other fun poop play paraphenalia. I guess this means that my Mom has had to play with her poop in her adult life too. I told her I got a small clear tube with a blue plastic cap and a tiny little shovel head attached to the lid by a bubble-blower wand. I’m fairly certain her opinion of Hong Kong medicine has gone down a notch.
She told me I could just use aluminum foil since that’s what we use for the dogs. I told her, well yes I could. I could just spread a sheet of foil out on the living room floor and drop my pants and aim for the shiny square. Muse was listening to my half of the conversation by then and was rather amused. Other suggestions were to hold a bowl in the toilet or to hold something to catch the poop. All this talk could have proved traumatizing for someone who was not comfortable with the whole pooping process. Not me though. I know that Everybody Poops and I didn’t need a book to confirm it for me.
I filled Muse in on the misconceptions I seemed to have had about this whole process and the things my Mom had said. I tried my hardest to act hurt by my wife’s laughter at my situation but it really was a lost cause. However once she recovered from laughing at me she picked herself up off the floor (like I was going to help her up after that…) and she grabbed a big plastic bowl that she said she didn’t like anyway. I looked at her with what I hope was my incredulous look and then stuck the bowl over my butt to see if it would fit. Mostly it did and then that sent Muse laughing again and she made me leave the kitchen before I tried the bowl out for the main event.
I armed myself in the best way I thought I could in this unfamiliar situation. I got a big plastic bag to put the soon-to-be-soiled big plastic bowl in after ‘the collection’ as well as a dog poop bag in case I needed to pick up and stray bits. I found that the big plastic bowl fit into the toilet lid just right with enough lip to keep it from slipping in. I was fairly certain that I couldn’t just sit on it like normal though and besides, my dangly bits would have been touching the bowl and that’s just not right. So I decided to try hovering.
Now mind you I’m about the farthest thing from a woman that you can get in most regards, so I am not what you would call a veteran of the art of toilet hovering. Men just never really have to use that particular skill. Sure we know the gist of the idea and assume that we could pull it off if we ever had to but I think most of us are pretty unused to the action. I found it impossible to hover and read a magazine at the same time so I had to adjust a few times and do without the reading. I can assure you that hovering and pooping is certainly much more difficult than just plain pooping. There’s a certain leverage which is lost as well as a portion of zen and dignity.
When I finally got the first nugget out, I hopped up to have a look. The first mistake was in my long standing belief that my shit doesn’t stink. Oh contraire mon frere. It does. So that was a bit of a shock. Then I was a little worried because I had told the doc that my poop had been diarrhea and that it hadn’t been black. This nugget o’ stinky poop made me a liar on many levels in that it was extremely solid and quite black, with green bits of ooze and some bits of white. (I imagine those bits of white are what they will be looking for at the lab) So not wanting to seem like a liar, and not wanting to try and hack apart this rock hard nugget with the tiny shovel on a wand, I put the bowl back down and had another go at the hovering.
I missed it before but this time I’m fairly certain I saw ‘Hovering (3)’ pass in front of my eyes while I was straining and concentrating on squeezing off a smaller and less black bit for the doc. Once it had passed I knew I had been successful on the smaller portion but I jumped up to take a look at the color. Dammit… same. Now by this time I was quite done with the whole ordeal and I noticed that this particular chunk would actually fit inside the tube without any slicing or dicing. It’s not what the doc asked for, but you know I don’t really care. It’s a poop sample so just do what you need to with it OK? So I used the tiny shovel wand to scoop up the small bit and guide it ever so carefully into the tube.
Then I put the lid on. Then I tried to put the lid on. The damn chunk of poop was blocking the shovel wand bit attached to the lid and wouldn’t let me close it! So there was a reason for their weird demands. Not to be outdone though, I slid the shovel bit in at an angle and got the threads of the lid and tube to match up. But then you know what happens when you turn the cap to tighten it right? Yeah, that flat shovel head spins too. That slimy chunk o’ poop got smeared all around inside that clear tube as I tightened the cap. Oh… that was pleasant.
So then I tossed the unused chunk in the toilet and flushed the evidence, dumped the soiled bowl into the bag to be thrown out and washed up. I got a zip-lock baggy to put the sample vial into and then stuck that baggy in the fridge with all our food… because the sample can’t be turned int till morning. You just have to love modern medicine.
So there you have it. I played with my poop last night and now you know all about it. If you actually read this whole post, I have serious concerns for your mental well-being and/or your coping skills. Either way, you’re welcome.