The time has come to face the dawning realisation that I have done my bit for pro-creation. Aside from the slower pace of my running, or loss of that all important yard of pace, what really makes one appreciate is he too old for this malarkey, is having a 9 month old baby at the ripe old age of 42. Fortunate, we most certainly are. But also mad mental insane as well - Christ! It's tougher this time around.
Having tried and failed previously to convince MPLST that the dreaded snip was necessary, I found this time less of a challenge. For some inexplicable reason, she not only drove me there but also waited to ensure I was well and truly in the door. I'm sure she'd have signed me in if she could....
So - off I trotted merrily, well, as merrily as one does, when a stranger is about to stick a needle in one's scrotum and burn back the working bits. Seems simple enough you'd think. I followed the (very clear) instructions and headed for surgical ward B, only to find myself in a ward full of wrinkly old dears - I am of course, referring to the patients, though to be fair a few of the nurses might fit this particular bill. Mmm, surely this can't be right he says to himself - so I check with the receptionist. Indeed, she smiles you have found it. Seems only fair I introduce myself as BFS, she asks me why I'm here, and upon hearing the word vasectomy, she seems to beam in the sheer pleasure of the pain I am about to endure. Cow! No need to look so bloody happy about it...'off you trot down that corridor'. And so I went.
I'm then shown to the ward where, along with a few random strangers, we stare silently at each other until someone breaks the bloody ice. It's a six "bed" ward, though we have the comfort of a simple chair where the bed would normally stand. One poor sod has just come back. He assures the rest of us that he can't feel a thing. 'It nips a bit when the injection comes'. He wasn't wrong.
The next fella, directly across from me, is a bit more sheepish, perhaps quieter by nature. Perhaps fecking bricking it! We do look like eejits once trussed up in the NHS gowns, but with our own socks and shoes back in place - it would make good casting for a loony ward. The third bloke, across and to my right, managed to get the NHS gowns on back to front, inside out or up side down. Our very helpful nurse kept him right though, and hence I didn't care about asking "daft" questions so as not to look a plonker as well. Next to me though, was the muppet. Everywhere we go, we attract muppets. Concerts, holidays, you name it. We are the ultimate muppet magnets. Mr Eccentric here made that hour go just a little bit faster....
We actually arrived at the same time. I took the shortest, most direct route into the ward, and consequently was sitting down signing my nuts away before he got there. That didn't matter though, his name was on the list before me, so he went first - great, another half hour on my day. Just as the excitement was peaking too.
So, back to signing the obligatory forms. "Are you happy with your decision BFS?" asks the very cheery nurse, believe it or not, we do get people who change their mind at the last minute. Happy? Not the first adjective that comes to mind. Satisfied it's necessary. Abso-bloody-lutely! I set about removing my watch and chain, and she taped up my ring, because she doesn't like to see wedding rings removed.
Simple questions you'd think, with simple answers. Not for Mr E to my right. Oh, if I need to take that one out, I'm going to need some pliers he says. For a moment, I wonder if he is just warming himself up in some kind of sadistic freak show kind of way. Conversation with Mr E at this point is best avoided I conclude. Fortunately, he is not in my line of vision. I should mention that Mr E turned up wearing a kilt (for easy access perhaps??) and with one of those ridiculous greased up moustaches. The kind of fella one looks at, and one instantly plays a word association game in ones head. Fanny came to mind immediately. Yes, I really am that judgemental.
It seems he had some joy in removing whatever it was from wherever it was. This earned him an extra soppy kiss from Mrs E (who, to the naked eye was much less eccentric, but we'll stick with that). One would be forgiven for thinking he was going on a stag weekend, and every smooch was to remind him not to play away - I guess they were in the early throws of their relationship. Either that, or I best up my game.
So, Mr Unable to Dress Himself returns. He assures me it was fine. He was watching the operation in the reflection of the lights. Perhaps Mr UTDH was a bit simple, but clearly harder than me I conclude sharply. He tells me that the first injection comes under the instruction of ready 1-2-3 and go. Unfortunately, Mr Surgeon was a bit inconsistent with the rules, and almost got a knee in the side of the head with the second injection. Noted says BFS.
So, about an hour and a half after sitting down, they're ready for me. Marvellous. Round I went, again asked if I was happy. Miss Nurse quickly corrected herself to ask me if I was "satisfied". Quick learner that one. So now, I'm handed off to Mrs Old nurse, who's sole mission in life was to distract me with any conversation at all whilst a team of strangers played science with my bollocks. Mr Surgeon talks me through what will happen, whilst at the same time finding the vas hiding right at the back of my scrotum, which now resembled a freshly plucked chicken. He is quite clearly at ease with this, probably does it a dozen times a day, if not more. Me on the other hand - still bricking it.
I sign the paper. He elevates the bed using the foot pump and makes some quip about the NHS beds being best of quality. So long as it keeps me where I'm meant to be when you start the burning bit I thought. Off he goes into the ward.
The only operating theatre I have ever seen in real life is the one in which FB1 was brought into this world. It was a horrible place, gave me the creeps in many ways. This one, despite what was coming, much less so. It looked compact, bijou even. Certainly looked sterile. There were two more people in the theatre with Mr Surgeon. Miss Scissors and Mr I Don't Talk. Miss Scissors took great delight in telling me she was nearing my genitals with sharp instruments several times - though I may have brought some of that on myself.
So introductions complete, the bed was tipped backwards so my head is now lower than my feet and my bollocks no longer drop I guess. Comfortable? Nope. Dignifying? Not a chance. Up comes the robes, and Mr S sets about lathering my bollocks in what I guess is some alcohol gel. Comfortable it is not. Next comes my own 3-2-1 as the needle hits the spot. I think it's mentally much, much worse than it is physically. Don't get me wrong, it's not pleasant, but it's a dull lingering pain for 10 secs, which causes a grown man like me to arch my back and tense every bit of my being until it takes hold. "Can you feel anything BFS?" says Mr S. "Trust me Doc, you'll be the first to know - now crack on if you will."
Between us, the conversation actually flowed, and the laughs were fairly constant. Those poor doctors must have had the unenviable view of my big belly laughs giving it some and having a great ripple effect as we cracked and traded jokes throughout. I was no less tense for my second 3-2-1, and a rather disappointed Mr Surgeon told me I should never have found out about the potential knee to the face. Theatres are like stag nights we agree, what goes on in there, stays there. I did try a wee peek in the lights, but the angles just weren't right. Can't say I was overly disappointed.
That's it. Done and dusted. Apart from Mrs Old Nurse crashing me into a couple of walls on the way back, it was all pretty painless. Until I got home that is. Now, 48 hours later, I think my bollocks have reduced back to their original size.
I was last in, so the ward was empty when I got back. A new nurse, we'll call her Mrs Big Nurse, took a little extra care of me. She wouldn't let me get up until I had finished my coffee and biscuit (the other nurse pretty much told the other lads, get dressed and go when you're happy). Perhaps I looked more needy? Perhaps she was just more officious. Who cares?