To wake in pain

I hate waking up. Those first moments as I am gaining consciousness hurt like a .. well, like a lot.

Typically, I will wake up several times during the night with intense pain in my bladder, as well as the ache of angry nerves in my left buttock and the perineal branches of the pudendal nerve between my legs. Then comes the fumbling part until I can get myself vertical and headed toward the bathroom. For certain hours during the day I have help but in the wee hours of the night I am on my own. All I can think is “Pain… pain … ow… ow… hurry … pain.” Get this hot lava pee out of me!

Then, after all that fuss to get there, I can’t pee. It is the nature of interstitial cystitis. Hurry and wait. And wait. I relax into the pain and my bladder burns. Finally, I do the only thing that works anymore. I lean over and push against my lower abdomen with my hands. The pressure releases the urinary sphincter enough to start the stream and I lean to either side to keep the flow going. I’ve read and been told by pelvic floor therapists that pushing urine out with your pelvic muscles is bad, and never to do it, so I compromise. The worst is when a spasm hits at the end. Oh. My. God.

But I’m done. I did it. I shuffle back to bed, arrange my heating pad, ice packs and hope for sleep.


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