I Stepped In Pee: One Woman’s Story

posted in: Day In The Life 23
The Northwestern bathroom looked better than this. But let's not split hairs. EW, HAIRS!!! Image: Wikipedia
The Northwestern bathroom looked better than this. But let’s not split hairs. EW, HAIRS!!! Image: Wikipedia


Yesterday, I had an appointment at Northwestern Hospital unlike any appointment I’ve ever had at any hospital. Rather than go in for a procedure or a bag o’ iron juice, I went in for a massage. A massage at the hospital! Who ever heard of such a thing!

It sounds pretty fance — and I suppose getting a massage is pretty fance, no matter where you get it — but this particular massage was more detail, less indulgence; more technical, less recreational. I’ve been having some tightness at my former ostomy site(s), you see, and I understand massage is effective in combatting adhesions, and I believe adhesions are the cause of the weirdness, here.

An adhesion is “an abnormal union of membranous surfaces due to inflammation or injury”, so that’s cute. And these (internal) adhesions, aside from being super adorable, can be somewhat dangerous, especially when they’re hanging around your guts, since they can twist around said organs and cause blockages and stuff. Adhesions are the kudzu of the body, and the more surgery you have, then more adhesions you ave. So I’ve been doing some tummy poking on my own, but when my GI doc said Northwestern offered massage on the hospital campus, I made an appointment. The gal could poke me with more flair and also work on my shoulders.

So I’m in the room, chatting with Cassandra, the nice lady who was to smoosh me around, and I decided I should pee first.

“Cassandra,” I said, “I’d like to run to the bathroom real quick before we get started. Would that be okay?”

The lovely Cassandra said it was just fine, so I hopped off the slab, dashed out the door, and ran down the hall to the bathroom. I had to hurry because the clock was ticking — and I wanted every maneuver Cassandra had in her repertoire before the bell tolled and I found myself in the state of no longer being massaged.

I threw open the door to the bathroom and when my feet hit the tile, I remembered I was barefoot. Hm. But I squinched up and thought, “Well, it’s not the best to not have shoes or socks or flip-flops on right now, but I’ll be in and out of this joint in five seconds.”

At which point I sort of leaped over to the toilet and was about to do my lil’ biz — when I stepped in pee.

I stepped in pee, y’all.

I howled. My body recoiled and thrashed at the same time (not easy) and I managed to get my foot further away from the rest of my body than it had ever been before. My mouth was in a Macauley Culkin-in-Home Alone-style scream as I hopped to the sink and swung my leg up so that my foot would go into the sink.


Would I die?? Whose icky pee was this?? No! Don’t tell me! I flapped my hands under the motion-sensor antibacterial soap dispenser thing. More! I needed more! What was this anemic foam?? I needed a Haz-Mat team. I needed surgery. I needed divine intervention. The water out of the faucet got super hot, thank goodness, and I washed and washed and tried not to barf. By the time I was done, my left foot had never been cleaner.

When I hopped out of the sink I took a bunch of paper towels and fashioned little slider-slipper things for myself to get out the door, then I shot back to Cassandra’s room. I did not tell her about the pee because it wasn’t an issue at that point and I was burning daylight on this massage.

I shall never be the same. Cassandra worked on the knots in my shoulder, but she can never relax the trauma in my soul.

23 Responses

  1. Marianne ten Kate
    | Reply

    Character forming stuff, Mary. And if you get a puppy, you’ll probably step in worse! 😉

    • Barbara
      | Reply

      Yes Mary, you’ll probably step in both, been there, don’t that! But I love my pup.
      I bet the massage soothed you and your soul.

  2. Mags
    | Reply

    Love your posts. You make me laugh and brighten my day.

  3. sue
    | Reply

    it’s only pee, Mary, get a grip:)) do appreciate your reaction tho…..be glad it wasn’t poo:)

  4. Karen Morrell Johnson
    | Reply

    I can actually SEE you hopping around with your foot in the sink!!

  5. Nancy
    | Reply

    I’ve only recently started reading you, but I’m enjoying your posts, You write just like you talk. It’s cool!

  6. Kerry Leach
    | Reply

    Oh dear me! I’ve just laughed myself silly! Of course not at you but oh my, I sympathise soooo much! Luckily I’ve had to paddle with my shoes on and manoeuvre my trousers/pants so that I didn’t get leg hem or even worse,- the crutch – dropping into said widdle pond, relieved sometimes that I was wearing a skirt so no such contortions to avoid piddlewiddle clothing on the nether regions!

    And yes – do continue to get those massages – that’s the cause of my dad’s exit from the world! Toxins caught up where they shouldn’t build up purely down to scar tissue. A good message for all people to read.

  7. David
    | Reply

    Never go to a public bathroom barefoot – that’s what I take away from this story. Actually that’s been my modus operandi forever but it’s good to know!!

  8. HelenMarie
    | Reply

    The good news is, it will cure your athletes foot. Just sayin’

  9. Ann Bailey
    | Reply

    Maybe it was water? Sure it was pee? Sorry.

  10. Nancy Neely
    | Reply

    I put my foot in my own poop this morning. It’s a long story and I’ll spare you.

    • Mary
      | Reply

      Nancy, you’re a stitch. 😉

  11. Robin Smith
    | Reply

    I love you and I adore the way you react to the things that happen in your life. Don’t step in the pee. Poor baby

  12. Laura Crawford
    | Reply

    I thought I was a drama queen! Mary, I just love your writing. I also look forward to the PBS series of Fons and Porter to watch you. Best wishes to you and your career. Delight in the knowledge that you are flexible enough to get your foot in the sink.

  13. Shellyj
    | Reply

    Aw, I stepped in my granddaughter’s poo. Dissolved into hysterical laughter. Because, poo!

  14. Anita Brayton
    | Reply

    Laughing with tears and sharing with anyone that will listen! How far can a one’s foot get from one’s body. YIKES!

  15. Vickie
    | Reply

    You are young. You will probably step in other more disgusting fluids.
    As a teacher I often say ” Why is this wet?”

  16. Teresa
    | Reply

    It’s a hospital, people are sick and have accidents or just can’t ambulate like you and I. I’m sure we all would have acted the same, but next time, tell someone and they are pretty quick to clean it up if someone reports it. They don’t want you to have those experiences and I’m sure the patient who did it was embarrassed.

  17. Bret
    | Reply

    Just be glad you didn’t sit in it. I hate sitting down on the stool and realizing my butt is wet!!!! When I first started teaching the stool in the teachers bathroom would almost always be wet. Evidently the ladies wouldn’t sit, but squat. Every so often I would forget to dry and sanitize before, sooooooo. Life is full of little challenges.

  18. Phylis
    | Reply

    Hilarious description. Reminded me of wading in pee last week in an airliner bathroom. Tried to walk in the high spots. Funny little dance to try and keep my shoes as dry as possible.

  19. Lori Kauffman
    | Reply

    I recently spent time in the hospital, and one of the times I used the bathroom didn’t look before I sat down. I jumped up when something cold came into contact with my butt. Turns out it was the metal thing that flips down to clean out the bedside camode. Eww. So, I had to tell my nurse, so they could clean it properly, of course. She was so concerned for my safety, since I was on rather large doses of blood thinner. I was more grossed out that my personal derrière dna was out and about, ready for its very own party!

  20. Diana L Kiley
    | Reply

    Oh my gory! I have not laughed this much since reading the articles that Sindy of FatCat fame puts in her Family Dirt articles. Definitely subscribing.

  21. Karen Poole
    | Reply

    You mention adhesions and how bad they can be! I know that very personally as my daughter had two abdominal surgeries for cancer and then about a year and a half later those nasty adhesions did exactly what you mentioned! Twisted around her intestines, causing her intestines to twist back on themselves and become severely blocked!! After three days in the hospital in excruciating pain trying to get the “blockage “ cleared up, the doctors finally called in a gastro doctor who did surgery. He had to remove 24 inches of both large and small intestines because by now they had started to die and send poison throughout her body!!! It was not fun. She now has to deal with what comes with parts of the guys being gone and the chemical imbalances that causes!

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