Stardate 20180825.5 (mid August to the uninitiated) – Captian Myfunk Ellis log of the USS Prostateus.
A surprise attack by the Klingons has rendered the ship badly damaged in the Guynemium cluster.
“Scotty, Scotty I need an update urgently” shouted Captain Myfunk as screen and panels smoked, sparked, exploded and fizzled all around him.
“I cannot give you anything. No warp drive, not even impulse. She’s impotent. I got my escape pod ready brudda”. Scotty replied, one foot already in his space suit.
“Of course the ships important Scotty. You have to give me something” Pleaded Myfunk.
“No I said impotent not important! You would have a better chance flinging on two space suit and going out and giving the ship a push. It’s dead in the water”. Replied Scotty, desperately pulling up the final zip of his escape suit.
‘Zap!’, ‘Zap’, ‘Arrrgh’ Scotty took aim and fired a warning shot from his phaser at one of the bulkheads. Certain members of his team that were moving just a little too close towards the escape pod. His escape pod.
“I have an idea, one second captain. Just hold on”. Screamed Scotty. Seconds later footsteps running then the familiar sound of an escape pod closing and jettisoning off the side of the ship hulls filled the microphone.
”Scotty, scotty SCOTTY….”
Today marks exactly six weeks since the operation and I can say that it seems quite a lot a has been achieved in that short space of time.
Firstly there is a very important appointment that needs to be attended. At the six week stage you have the ‘final’ PSA check. It’s not actually the last PSA test you will have, far from it. This PSA test is the first after the operation and is very important. You need this PSA reading to come back as 0.03 which is deemed undectable, the official term used in prostate cancer to say you are cancer free. I had the blood test two weeks before the appointment. This test was to come back low but not undectable, it was 0.04. I didn’t want to tell anyone because I had not come this far to get a ‘nearly there’ result. I took another test that day and waited a few days for the result to come through.
On the 31st August 2018 at thirteen twenty nine pm I received an answer phone message that my PSA had come back at 0.03 – Undectable – I was cancer free!!
I didn’t do a Facebook or Twitter post with the news. I just didn’t feel like it. Though I have made no secret of my condition I didn’t put it out there directly on social media either (you would have had to read the blog to find out). Instead I told a small number of close friends and family and this is the first time I have mentioned it publicly. I have been asked if the experience so far has affected my faith either in a negative or a positive way. To tell the truth its been a little surreal because I was never ill or in any kind of pain beforehand. I was told I had something that had no physical effect on me and now I am being told I am now cancer free. Other than a load of physical side effects, direct from the surgery, I feel the same now as I did before.
Anyway, I will stop drifting and to answer the question I said very early on to God that if he did his bit then I would do mine. His bit was to get me through the surgery with the best possible outcome and my part was to use this big gob, sense of humor and battle with prostate cancer to try and save others from this in every way I could.
The pelvic floor exercises have become second nature and the results were slow at first and then they just seemed to jump into action a couple of weeks ago. I am able to sleep at night without a pad, though I will get up a couple of times some nights, to use the toilet. The incontinence has reached what is called the ‘stress incontinence’ stage. This means when I stand up, run, laugh, cough loudly or pick up something heavy it will trigger a leak. That aside I would like to think that I could have this cracked in the next few weeks.
My strength seems to have pretty much returned back to normal. This has been happily exploited by the family assigning all manner of tasks back to me. Whereas before if I picked up a bag they would run and shout at me to take it off me, now it is more of a not even look back to see how I was coping if I was heavily laden down with whatever. The stitches have almost completely dissolved though there are still some pain twinges deep down. I can also drive now which is a blessing and a curse as I was enjoying being chauffeured around and public transport.
The Post Prostatectomy seminar is for those who have had the radical prostatectomy surgery and are now at or around the post six week stage. There was about ten of us in this particular group again of all ages and races and I was definitely the youngest there. Now a veteran of these courses I have been trying to decide if prostate cancer patients are all miserable beforehand or the situation makes them so. It’s probably a mixture of the two. We never talk to one another and it’s quite sad that most of these meetings, other than the staff presenting, resemble wakes. It was a case of silently filing in and silently filing out. There was always a patient, at these meetings, who had come out the other side volunteering and making themselves available to have chat afterwards but I never saw anyone take them up, including myself. To me they were all too happy and smiley. For us this is still the stage of the unknown. Then I realized that I had just answered my own question. I don’t want to hear about someone else’s wonderful progress and success until I had experienced some of my own. I understand that this is all highly personal and even though we are still here, unlike others who are worm food, we are pretty self-centered.
We introduced ourselves and gave a sentence about how we were progressing with the incontinence. Some of the guys were more advanced than the others but most of us were at about the same level. Some indicated that they would like to talk privately afterwards about additional help. The other purpose of this meeting was to talk about the elephant in the room.
Regardless of how the operation goes, if both sets of nerves are saved or only one set saved or unfortunately neither could be saved, everyone undergoing the prostatectomy operation will experience impotency for some time. This could last days, weeks, months, years or forever. No two people are the same so it is different for everyone.
I am currently impotent.
There I said it. Other than the occasional twinge there is more action going on in a pack of crisps at the moment than with the King.
With the catheter still inserted anything that could get the King to go for a walk absolutely terrified me. No correction it absolutely petrified me. Every woman around me was fat no correction humongous, cavewoman hairy and hideously ugly. That’s what I had to repeat to myself. It was not until a couple of weeks after having the catheter removed and feeling less bashed up I could finally tell that the King was still on his vacation, sunning himself somewhere. Nothing short of Dr Frankenstein and some well placed electrodes was going to get his attention.
Not that I need to say it to myself to believe it or get over it. It’s a simple fact that I am impotent. It’s a simple temporary fact for me. Someone who could be about to go through this will need to see it and know you have to keep positive. Will I always be impotent, hell no. I have already warned his lordship that he is back in the office by Christmas or I will be looking at a Russian implant.
Blasé? Again that’s not the case at all. On the medical front as I had successfully had both sets of nerves saved there would be no reason why full hydraulics would not be restored. Being anything other than absolutely positive was not an option for me. My most pressing problem at the moment is fixing the little incontinence I have left outstanding. That needs to be resolved first and of course,
One battle at a time, or at least try to keep it that way.
I was told however that I did have to start another battle. That battle was with the pump.
We were told quite simply “Use it or lose it…..”
Stay tuned for the next exciting episode….
Is MyFunk and the ship doomed?
Did Scotty really abandon the ship?
One thought on “18. Are you pleased to see me or is that a bag of crisps?”
Well researched. Informative… Eye opening… And most of all an inspiring article… Thank you for encouraging our men in an area they may decide not to speak of or look about themselves….