When I first thought about a vasectomy I pictured myself wheeled before a physician. The physician is wearing a bloodied butcher’s apron, his lips are moist with sadism and he is waving a rusty pair of garden shears. At that point, I hadn’t discussed it with anyone who’d had the operation so my only means of comparison was a beloved childhood cat who’d been spayed. If she was anything to go by, then I’d be quivering under the coffee table before skittering off upstairs to lie low for a week in the airing cupboard.
None of this happened. There was no hacking or lolloping or scything. Even snipping is slightly overstating the matter. If anything it was more of a mild welding. I had the op around twelve hours ago and I don’t feel any less of a man, although admittedly there were only trace levels of virility to begin with. Nothing has changed at all, save the procreating power of my output (yes, there is still output).
When my wife sold the undertaking to me she explained that the results were easily reversible. This is not true. Things can be disentangled down there but it is a very complex and unreliable process and it is only available privately, so the plumbing will cost you.
I didn’t take me long to weigh it up. I have enough children.
I had a stroke of fortune and was ushered towards the urology clinic of the nearest private hospital, despite remaining at the pleasure of the NHS. This perhaps explains why I was offered a general anaesthetic as opposed to a local one.
I spoke to a few men who had undergone a vasectomy and every one expressed surprise that I was being knocked out for the duration. For them, it was something more like ‘bish-bash-bosh and home for Weetabix”. I got the notion that a few of them thought that I’d requested a GA out of cowardice, but as far as I’m aware you cannot have some kind of elective bollock-caesarean.
It did seem like a waste of anaesthetic gas or serum or juice or whatever it is they sluice around your veins, but in truth I didn’t protest. Fundamentally I was relishing what would be the deepest sleep I’d had in years, however brief. It also avoided all sorts of potentially awkward scenarios. I find having my hair cut a vaguely squirmy experience, so the thought of having the make conversation with someone plugging away at the coalface of my genitals was not a pleasing one. “Going anywhere nice this year?” “How much would you like off the back?”
I was also terrified that the surgeon would take a look at the job in hand and let his assistant know that he’d need a smaller scalpel. Or he’d simply shrug his shoulders and inform me that the microsurgery hadn’t been developed yet to tackle something so minuscule.
Looked at it a different way I also liked the thought of being fussed over, having a team of concerned doctors and nurse gather round my bed and tend to me. I pitched it to myself as a spa day. But in anti-embolism stockings. Which is sort of how it happened. When I came round from the anaesthetic I felt content and relaxed, like I’d fallen asleep during a massage.
Except that my dick was in a sling. The proper name for this is a scrotal support, which sounds like the backing band for an aggressively vulgar punk-rocker. I won’t go into too much detail but it sort of looks like a poorly installed jockstrap. Together with the cricket trousers I’d decided to wear for airiness I flounced out of the hospital looking like Freddie Flintoff. I’m sure there’s a ‘new ball’ joke to be made here but I can’t think of one. Cut me some slack, I was in the operating theatre this morning.
I am not sore now. And I being allowed to do the things that I enjoy the most: sit down, watch old football and write bollocks. Literally in this case. So what began as a selfless venture had turned into a peculiarly selfish one.
The only negative aspect was a few seconds of agony in my wrist as the anaesthetic coursed up it. It was like my sperm were attempting one last act of revenge against my wrist for all the times it had abused them. Having removed their one reason for existing I did feel a slight wistfulness for the little swimmers.
After all, we’d collaborated to great effect. We helped produce the two things that I am most proud of.
For actually non-silly information about vasectomies try here at the NHS