Meet & talk to fellow OstoMates Support | Friendship | Relationships


Posted by Bill


Last night there was an incident,
which turned into an accident,
that made me contemplate my life,
my stoma, sicknesses and wife.

It had been quite a normal day
with nothing much out of the way,
and nothing to make me alarmed
that I may be in someway harmed.

I irrigate just after tea,
so stoma stuff won’t bother me,
and I can go to bed at night
knowing everything’s alright.

Well! Yesterday was just the same,
until, at last, the night-time came
and early on it dawned on me
that I would need to have a pee.

So, up I got and to the loo
I made my way, because I knew
that sleep is very hard to get
if I delay and then get wet.

But, as I stood there half asleep,
I found it very hard to keep
my focus on what I should do
whilst I was standing at that loo.

All of a sudden, I felt sick,
which made things much more dramatic,
for I must have been quite unwell
as I lost consciousness and fell.

I do not know how long I laid
so ignominiously displayed,
but when I started to come round
there were a few things that I found.

The first thing that I noticed was
I could not move myself because
I was so exhausted that
I simply lay there prone and flat.

When I came round , my wife was there,
showing her concern and care
by mopping up the pool of blood
that oozed upon the floor in flood.

For as I fell, I must have hit
my head, and thereby made it split,
so, as my world had been upturned
my bleeding made my wife concerned.

This was the focus of discussion,
and secondary to concussion,
and, as far as I could tell
I was nauseous as well.

I could not move, but still I knew,
that to be sick within the loo
was better than over the floor,
which meant the cleaning would be more.

After some time, I managed to
drag my head above the loo
to puke and wretch so violently,
mixing with blood coagulantly.

Once that was done, yet still I knelt,
only then it was I felt
something I barely could believe
the great weight on my stoma sleeve.

For I knew that to irrigate
helps to avoid this sort of state
so, why should my sleeve be so full
when I had been so dutiful.

There was no time to hesitate,
for pressure on my sleeve was great,
this meant that there was too much waste
which needed emptying in haste.

By my rapid calculation
in this dramatic situation
there was three or four litres
of foul-smelling excreta.

This gave me the bright idea
that I might have some diarrhoea,
along with sickness this would be
indicative of a bug you see.

And so, I go to bed again,
free from worry and from pain
to contemplate the night’s events
and ponder what it represents.

I feel so fortunate that I
am still alive and did not die,
for, at my age, collapsing thus
and come around, is just a plus.

I’m also fortunate to know
that irrigation goes to show
that if I had not had my sleeve
the mess would be hard to conceive.

But the most fortunate of all,
in the case of such a fall,
was to have a caring wife
to make sure I came back to life.

It’s times like these that we should seize
the moment someone tries to please
us by their kindness and their care
and the fact that they are ‘there’.

It’s in those moments of great need,
that we can harvest that small seed
of love that we planted before
and nurtured ‘till it grew some more.

And so, I say with great delight,
we must have done something that’s right
to reach a point where we both care
enough to know that we’ll be there.

                                                  Be Withers 2021

See all blogs by Bill
Aug 10, 2021
HenryM : Fantastic, Bill. Sounds like you're going to be alright, thank goodness.
Aug 10, 2021
Morning glory : Bill you are fortunate to have a loving wife. I am happy that you weren't more seriously hurt.
Aug 10, 2021
lovely : So glad you are ok, I know it had to be a scary time for you and your wife.
Aug 10, 2021
delgrl525 : Wow, Bill, a scary story with a very happy ending! So glad you are better.
Aug 10, 2021
magoo : So good to hear that you ...I hope that you are OK !! I hope you got yourself to the hospital and had a scan Bill !!!?? It must have been very scary for your Lady Love !! It is scary when this happens in the middle of the night , bad enough in the daytime . Take care of yourself Bill , we are all in need of your pearls of true wisdom Every day .
Keep the faith Bill . Eamon .
Aug 11, 2021
Bill : Hello everyone.
Thanks for your comments and good wishes.
When things like this happen, I like to try to capture it in verse, not only to distract myself from the event, but to seize the moment before it is lost.
Just as an update -- I contacted my local surgery and they agreed to dress my wound and have a doctor examine me. There doesn't seem to be anything permanently amiss. So, this looks as if it will be just another 'day in the life of'.
Best wishes
Aug 11, 2021
Caz67 : Aww Bill sorry you weren't well and fell, hopefully you are well on the mend. Take care of yourself and your lovely wife ??????????????
Aug 11, 2021
Bill : Hello c57557555.
Thank you for your take on my fall. However, my rhyme does not tell the whole story which led to my blackout and fall. All of my life I have had very low blood pressure and I have had many such blackouts in the past - long before covid19 and issues surrounding vaccinations. 'If' and only 'if' I were to look for medical interventions as a scapegoat for the incident, my logic would tell me that the medication (which is designed to lower my blood pressure!!!)given to me after my triple heart bypass, and expected that I would still be taking, would be a good candidate for 'blame'.
This problem was discussed with the surgeon at the time and he explained that there are always risks involved in taking medication of any kind; His take on it was that, taking the medication was more likely to keep me alive than not taking it. The chances of me dying as a result of passing out were predictably less than those of having another heart attack and considerably less than if I was just feinting.
As for the ongoing discussions on covid vaccinations, I consider myself to be in that group of people that have been labelled as 'vulnerable'. My logic tells me that I should protect myself in whatever ways are available to me. I have two relatives and three friends who are vaccination sceptics - all of which have had covid and are presently suffering what is called 'long-covid'. I am quite happy with their stance on the vaccinations and I do not wish them any ill-will in their long-term suffering. We all need to make our own judgments about these sorts of issues and take the consequences of our actions.
I recall a similar concept arising a few years back about smoking and other drug-taking and, at that time, I tried to capture the concept in rhyme. So, I might as well share it with you
now, as it expresses similar sentiments to that which I might have regarding anti-vac's. ( i.e. 'let people do what they wish - as long as it does not adversely affect others in the process'.
Best wishes


I don't mind if people smoke
so long as they don't make me choke,
for there are things that I might do
that people may not like me to.

I don't mind if smoker's smell
like they've been singed by fires of hell,
as long as they don't pass it on
when they've passed on and now are gone.

I don't mind if a smoker's lung
is all clogged up with tar and dung.
This is the way they chose to go
and the true price of tobacco.

I don't mind their emphysema
or their active myxoedema. (disease of thyroid gland)
These illnesses could be predicted
so, these things are self-inflicted.

I don't mind their brown stained teeth
with sceptic gums that lay beneath,
or their lack of self-respect,
for this is what one would expect.

I don't mind if they might die
and meet their maker in the sky.
You will not hear me raise my voice,
for surely this is their own choice.

I don't mind if people smoke,
inject morphine or sniff some coke,
for addicts know the risks they take
as they put their lives at stake.

So, I don't mind if people smoke
as long as they don't make me choke,
for there are things that I might do
that people may not like me to.

B. Withers 2013
(In: Unfashionable Rhyming verse 2014)
Aug 11, 2021
bays6513 : Hello Billl, I am glad to hear you are OK. I am sure the whole situation was not pleasant for you and your wife. Glad she was there for you.
I been there before with my sugar being like 58 it is a ugly and scary feeling! And I hope you can ask your doctor for an alternative med with little to no side effects.

I can't believe that this day and age we are in with medical break through there is no other medicine for you! Maybe a second opinion ????. It just doesn't make sense ????. (If I would of listened to one doctor I would be dead).
May I say you are a very strong person and your will is amazing ????.
Wish u the best and hopefully no more situations like that for you and yours. Think u met your quota for the year lol.

Take care and many blessings to you ???? and yours. We need you here you are are my medicine with your lovely words.
Hugs ???? from your family in California
BAYS ???? ???? ????

Aug 30, 2021
Bill : Thank you Bays ( & everyone else) for your kind and supportive comments on this blog. I am sorry that I'm a bit late in replying on this occasion, but I used to get notifications when people post on my blogs and this allowed me to address comments right away. However, it seems that notifications on blogs are now a hit and miss affair an this one was a 'miss'.
I do very much appreciate the feedback on the rhymes as these particular type are written almost entirely as a self-indulgent exercise, so other people rarely get to read them.
It is interesting that you mention that the rhymes can be a form of 'medicine', as that's exactly what they are for me and have been for many of the people they have been written for.
I recall writing one of my first books on the subject in 1995, trying to explain the concept of 'In-Verse Feedback: An Alternative Psycho-Social Therapy'.
However, I found that my own writing was so inferior to those of Prof. Laurie Thomas who wrote the foreword to the book, that I now use his words as a better explanation:


“I am delighted to be invited to write a foreword to this unusual, but unusually useful book. In-Verse Feedback is an innovative idea which captures the essence of a key aspect of effective psycho-social therapy. At its most simple this is the proper appreciation of the deeply healing effect of being fully and truly understood by another: understood with what Carl Rogers called unconditional positive regard.
The importance of this central process of therapy is very often under-estimated. Many practitioners feel that it is what they can do, to and for the patient, that matters. Whilst in particular cases and in the short term, the specific content of the counsellor's contribution may be important, the true centre of the therapeutic process lies elsewhere. Healing of the psyche begins as the patient is enabled to become the client. As the person begins to believe in themselves, they are gradually able to take some responsibility for their own condition and how they live. In social work, and indeed in many other areas of work, it is difficult to get this process started. It is such moves from nothing to something that baffle the expert practitioner. How do you help someone who is totally dependent on others, to start to think, feel and do things for themselves? Anything to begin with. Once the process is started we can begin to converse about the quality and effectiveness of what gets done. But how do we help someone to start?
The problem is that this move can only be made by the person themselves. You can provide support whilst they attempt to make the move, but by definition you cannot make this move towards Self-Organisation for them.
True support lies in believing that someone else is truly concerned for you, empathising with you and trying to understand you. Appearing to listen is not enough. Listening with your own agenda in mind does not work. What works is being sincerely concerned for the client; and this only works if the client believes it. Ultimately the client needs to test out the quality and depth of this conversational link.

In-Verse Feedback is an ingenious, caring and effective way of demonstrating the empathy and understanding that has informed the conversation. Poetry combines feelings and understanding into insight. To reveal one's insight in verse is a profoundly robust demonstration of the quality of one's listening. This is just what is needed to nurture the very early stages of the healing process.

B. Withers is the Nom de Plume of someone who has worked closely with me in CSHL for many years. We share the general philosophy and approach which we call Self-Organised Learning; and the methodology we call Learning Conversations. In-Verse Feedback is valuable contribution to this developing body of knowledge within a paradigm of Conversational Science.
May our therapists become poets; and our poets become social workers. If they do we may yet add to the healing power of our social services.”

Laurie Thomas
Professor of Human Learning
DHL, Brunel University
Director of CSHL

Currently online: 18    
3 members & 15 visitors