July 22, 2016

It's Simple: Do This Or DIe

If this wasn't your view when you woke up this morning, you are doing alright.

Being in the hospital forces one to think about what is really important in life. It is a harsh lesson in the basics, in simplicity. Life stripped to the essentials.

It all really comes down to one question.

When the doctor or nurses come into your room they don't ask you about all the stuff you have at home. They don't ask what kind of car you drive, or how many square feet your home is. They don't ask what you do for a living, or how much money you have.

No, this is what they ask - "Have you had a bowel movement today?"

That is something that really matters. As my friend said while training as a nurse - "If you don't poo and pee, you die." I have thought a lot about that simple statement since the last time I was in the hospital shortly after moving to Nova Scotia, two years ago.

I had injured my back doing a transfer with Linda. We needed two ambulances to get us to the hospital, since there was no one to care for her in my absence. I was in hospital for one week, Linda for two (so I could have one week of respite and heal properly).

During that time we were both asked "The Question" on a regular basis. Why? Because it is one of the most simple and important things any of us do, whether during a crisis in the hospital or in regular life back home.

So Dr. NBA asks you, "Have you had a movement today? Urinated, too?" If so, you are doing alright.  Have a great hind end, and weekend. Life is good.


  1. Anonymous7/22/2016

    I have thought of your line "If you don't poo and pee, you die." several times since first reading it - and am grateful that all that works just fine for me. Thanks for all your posts and have a nice weekend. - Mary

    1. That line has stuck with me through the years. So simple and true. Healthy days are good days. Here's to many such days for all.

  2. gretchen7/23/2016

    thanks, doc, for reminding us of what REALLY matters :)

    1. I like the non-complex lifestyle of keeping to the basics. This, and eating, sleeping, regular exercise, social contact, being creative, being in nature.

  3. I'm minimalistic. I have bowel movement only once a week.

    1. That's funny. I would enjoy a once a week schedule - does anyone really WANT to spend time on the toilet? We are all on different schedules, and I think regularity is the key.

  4. Anonymous7/24/2016

    This is so true, and strange I never thought it applied to humans -shows how detatched from nature we have become O.o

    I have a sick rat, and when ever I see him pee on my bedsheets or he is in the poo-corner doing his business, I smile and reassure myself he will be fine again.

    It is also btw, the first question the vet will ask.

    (I don't mean to make any demeaning comparison, I see all living creatures as equal to life)

    Best wishes

    1. Yes. Stuff must go in, stuff must come out. Life. There it is.

    2. Anonymous7/28/2016

      Yikes. In the US it would cost thousands of dollars to get an ambulance for two people and they'd never let you stay a week for a bad back! And to have Linda stay for an extra week so you could recuperate? What the heck? So many people have suggested the the Canadian way of healthcare here, but the insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies have such a strong lobby it'll never happen. The big excuse is that it's too expensive - well yeah, when you have no control over the pharmaceutical companies and their prices, the hospitals and their prices ($50 for a box of kleenex!) and the insurance companies and their prices, then of course it's too expensive to implement. I say bull. It can be done and is being done in Canada. Of course with a female version of Hitler running and a complete nutball like Donald Trump we don't stand a chance regardless of which one wins. Oh. Sorry for the rant, but we're in deep doo doo here. Deva


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