My Pot of Gold

My balls hurt. They have hurt for more than 8 hours. They still hurt. A lot. More specifically, it's like I've have been kicked in the balls. By a very vindictive nut-slapping leprechaun that for some reason has singled out my junk to hide his pot of gold. In this case, the pot of gold is a kidney stone and for some reason that makes your balls hurt. Eventually the doctor explained to me why this is but I didn't catch the gist of it as my balls were hurting.

The pain is located in my lower abdomen. Guys that have been kicked in the junk will know the feeling, because it felt exactly like that. It was a nice dull ache that began around 11:30 the other night. It was right when I was finishing up my last blog. I was minding my own business, then the leprechaun showed up and I felt, um, discomfort.

At first I thought that perhaps I had just adjusted wrong, it's been known to happen. After all, they aren't really protected. Great job on the human engineering there God, let's hang the most valuable part of me right out there in the open.

So I readjusted and waited. The nut throbbing pain was still there. I began to employ all the strategies that guys have learned over a lifetime of pissing off vindictive women who have knees and aren't afraid to use them. I spread my legs. I did some up and down squat thrusts. I walked around a bit. I ate some meat. Nothing worked. By midnight I was starting to become concerned.

But that concern didn't last long. I didn't get the nickname Hoss for crying about every ache and pain. I cry at the end of romantic comedies, not the aches and pains though. I decided to do what all guys do when they have a mysterious pain. Ignore it and go to bed, assuming that I am so damn tough that whatever it was got scared and decided to pipe down.

At 1:30 I got out of bed because the pain did not take the hint that I am tough. Instead of slowly dissolving into an uncomfortable memory, it actually got worse. Now not only did my lower abdomen hurt but it had spread to my back. It wasn't acute mind you, but just a lot more intense. Under the surface still but I could still walk and use reason. In this case, the reason in my head decided that it was time to check WebMD. That website should be banned.

I put in my symptoms: aching balls. I browsed through the lists of possibles. This is never good to do and why you should never self-diagnose yourself. At different times through the next two hours I decided that I had twisted my testicle in such a way that it was now going gangrene. After that, I was pretty sure I had a Lance Armstrong. Then I decided that it didn't sound right either, how about a gall bladder. Anyone want gallstones? How about me. Finally I decided that none of them fit but from what I heard and read, I was thinking appendicitis.

I knew that the appendix was located there so to me the dull ache in the pit of my stomach was an indication that I would have to have it removed. Kidney stone never entered my mind.

By this time it was 3:30am and I did some more reasoning that seemed to go so well for me before. I could either drive myself to the hospital without telling my wife or I could wake everyone up and get us all down there together. Or, what I eventually decided to do, was to go back to bed and "suck it up" for a couple more hours until everyone got up normally and then go to the hospital. After all, I didn't have a fever and by that logic, I had plenty of time before I burst into appendix flames.

I'll admit, a lot of this doesn't sound so good a few days later.

But in my head I was thinking that I didn't want to get everyone up and drag them down there with little or no sleep. I'm a good dad and as my son says, dad is "Big and Strong." So sure, I'm big and strong and as such I can just chew on some leather until they all get up.

I eventually fell asleep at about 4am. An hour later, I woke up. The pain was still there. The pain had spread. The pain had gotten worse.

Now it was more like someone was actually kicking me in the balls and not just the after effects. My lower back hurt, my abdomen hurt, everything hurt. But again, using reason, I decided that I could take it for another couple of hours. I got up and watched SportsCenter, the men's placebo that works every time. I showered, got dressed and just kind of rolled around on the couch for a little while.

At 6:30 I was wondering why today of all days my children didn't wake up at their normal time. Sure, every other Monday morning they are up at 6 AM wanting breakfast. When dad needs them to be up, they sleep in. I still wasn't all that convinced that I needed to go to the hospital thinking now that maybe I just had twisted a muscle. I went into the bathroom to pee and that's when everything changed.

I'm a big guy. I like to really think that I am a tough guy with a pretty high tolerance for pain. But I will tell you this. If I wasn't holding onto the wall, I would have fallen face-first into a toilet of my own piss.

Almost immediately the leprechaun in my junk kicked, hard. Very hard. There was a shooting pain up my side. My knees buckled and my fingernails actually dug into the wall a little bit. And I couldn't stop peeing. Nor could I aim anymore. Fantastic. But I am proud to admit, despite it all, I didn't cry out. I may have wanted to but the pain was intense enough in my side that I had no air left in my lungs. And that was it, that was the big moment. I had passed my kidney stone. Even if I didn't know that I had done it.

That sealed the deal. Time to go to the hospital. I crawled up three stairs on my hands and knees before forcing myself to stand straight up and "take it like a man." I only made it to a hunched over position before saying screw it and just made it into my bedroom as best as I could.

Not wanting to freak out my wife, I gently patted her on the leg. "Honey," I said. "I need you to wake up."


"No big deal babe, we just need to go to the hospital for a little while."

That did it. That woke her up. I didn't want her to panic but that's kind of hard to do when you are being woken up when it's still dark outside by a man grunting in pain that he needs to go to the hospital. She got out of bed and I told her what had been happening. Her immediate anger at not being woken up sooner was gone as soon as she saw me. I was laying at the foot of the bed, moaning, rocking myself from side to side. I may have said something about nut-kicking leprechauns.

She got the kids up and we piled into the car. We told them that we were going to get donuts. Oh, and daddy has an owie. My daughter became very concerned. She doesn't like to see me hurt and I don't like her to see me hurt. Damages the image of all-powerful Dad that I'm trying to portray here. Bubba Hoss just wanted donuts.

Turns out, there's not many people at the hospital at 7am on a Monday so I got to see the doctor really quick. He asked me what was wrong and I decided candor was the best way to go.

"I feel like someone kicked me in the balls." and then I told him about the big pain 30 minutes earlier. His diagnosis was quick. Kidney stone. The worst was past me. The CAT scan showed a stone about 3 millimeters in size was resting nicely in my bladder. The pain comes when it goes from your kidney to your bladder and apparently all the hard work was already over. The rest is just doing what you do naturally.

So for the past several days I spent hopped up on some killer pain meds and peeing into a plastic container so that my urine can be strained. The pills are fine, the straining, not so much. But in the end, I will get my little pot of gold and then I will tell the leprechaun to fuck off.


  1. I'm glad that is isn't gangrene! That's bright side. They say that a kidney stone is as close to a man come to the pain of childbirth. You should save, name & put those stones through college.

  2. I've heard it's like an angry ex-wife standing on your left nut in stilettos. Haven't had the pleasure. On the plus side, great blog fodder, you lucky guy.