#529 Finally peeing after holding it forever

It didn’t used to be this way.

For hundreds of thousands of years our species peed freely, whenever, wherever. Yes, whether we were roaming jungles, crossing ice bridges, or having picnics in plains, it wasn’t always pretty but when nature called, we answered.

Things are different now.

Most of the time our bladders are all locked up.

Yes, with our stadium seating, boardroom meetings, kid’s soccer games, and smooth highway lanes, the one thing we didn’t build in was an easy way to clear some leaves and squat in the corner. Honestly, how many times have you been looking for parking and circling the lot, waiting for a movie to wrap up the plot, or just fumbling with keys so you can race to the pot?

Listen, I’ve been there too. Yes, it’s always a tight squeeze, with bouncing knees, and gritted teeth, but we accept this tradeoff in exchange for living in our bright and modern World of Pants. And a world where everybody wears pants is great, don’t get me wrong. It’s just that it cramps our style sometimes.

That’s why finally peeing after holding it forever feels so great. It’s like millions of years of animalistic need bursting through the chains and restraints of modern social norms. It’s the bathroom equivalent of a primal scream and it feels oh so incredibly


The New Yorker reviews The Book of Awesome (3 days!)

Congrats to Laura J. and Emily B. for winning last week’s contest!

Photos from: here and here

72 thoughts on “#529 Finally peeing after holding it forever

  1. This is one of the problems I have not found a complete solution for. I have told myself various things… from: “I will go just before I leave the house/office etc.”, “I will go just before the meeting, class, etc”, “I will go as soon as I feel like instead of waiting til I can’t breathe”… Oh, well! Nature rules, and it is indeed awesome when you are relieved of thus worry!

  2. Sweet relief! This is exactly how I felt after the 3-hour podcast I hosted this afternoon, on which you appeared. Thanks for being our guest on The Drill Down, by the way!

  3. You have to love the ‘piss shiver’ after holding it in for ages, and you get that ‘woooooaahhhhh’ feeling of relief.

  4. One of the best feeling EVER!!!!
    I only have one bathroom at home and there are 3 of us. Seems like eveveryone has to go at the exact same time. I always offer to go last….but then they take their sweet little time and I’m usually doing a dance when I finally get in there.

  5. This feeling is pure awesomeness!!!
    The feeling of your bladder shrinking back to normal size is beyond orgasmic…

    Btw – has anyone else noticed the small smiley face in the top right corner O_o
    I always try to click it, thinking that it is a link to a hidden world of awesomeness.

  6. It’s funny how the closer and closer you get to a bathroom, the urge seems to grow exponentially until finally you get there and………ahhhhhhhhhh!

  7. Ever had a pelvic ultrasound? Well if you have, friend, then you and I share a harrowing full-bladder experience like no other.

    Preparation instructions: Drink a swimming pool full of water, and then sit in the waiting room for four or five hours or so. Then we will ask you to lie flat while we press a wand hard into your abdomen directly over your extended bladder. Not just once, either. We’ll probably turn and twist, and shove that wand all over your belly in ways you never imagined.

    Then we might say something like: “your bladder is too full. Just go let a little out.” A little out? Let a LITTLE out? Are you kidding me? If these floodgates open, there is no telling what might happen!

    So yes, my friend, peeing after a pelvic ultrasound has got to be the sweetest, sweetest relief you may ever experience.

    1. This made me laugh. I’ve heard stories about this. Who can just let out a little pee when they need to go so badly? That’s a completely unrealistic demand.

    2. That is so unfortunate that someone has to go through that, but very funny to hear.

      I hope I never have to go through that EVER.

    3. Oh lawd, that was exactly my experience this Tuesday. I’m pretty proud of my camel-like ability to “hold it in” for 8 hours sometimes (out in the field with only disgusting portapotties to contend with). But the pelvic ultrasound experience… well, let’s just say my mantra was ~must not pee on table!~ for the entire exam. :p

    1. Wouldn’t you feel bad if it was a different Laura who won?!


      Buuuuuuut, it was me. And yes, thank God. And Neil. And the random number generator.

      P.S. Thanks for saying I deserved it.

  8. This might be one of the most awesome things I’ve seen. It’s seriously one of the best feelings ever.

    It’s especially great after being stuck in rush hour traffic (in Atlanta, no less) for hours and hours. Aaahhhhh. :)

  9. That whole bladder-returning-to-normal-size sensation is a weird yet satisfying feeling. Ahh, the tank’s back on E again.

    And in this context I mean empty. Not the drug. Just to clarify. :)

  10. I once spent 6 hours strapped immobile to a board after being head-butted at a Beastie Boys concert. Going to the bathroom after that was pretty much the greatest feeling in the entire world.

    1. OK, so I’m going to revise my earlier comment.

      Harrowing full bladder experiences:

      1. Strapped to body board for 6 hours after Beastie Boys head-butting incident
      2. Pelvic Ultrasound

  11. Wow – I dont believe it – this actually happened to me last night…. I was out on a walk and had to decide between public exposure or holding it in…. I held it, but was amazing when I got home!!

  12. Oh how I can relate with this! Having road works in town means traffic stop/go and delays of 10 minutes and on 2 occasions this week I have eyed the island in the middle of town with tears in my eyes.

  13. Oh that is just hilarious! I remember when I was in Iraq and our mission was held up for HOURS. We were just parked in the middle of Baghdad waiting for the roads to clear up. I was the only female on that mission and I thought I was dying. Sooo my guys arranged the trucks, made all the gunners turn the other way, put men on foot to stand about 10 ft away (backwards of course) for “protection” and to make sure nobody was trying to sneak a peak. Then turned off all lights so I could squat and pee. It was the longest process, but completely worth it.

  14. When I had my daughter I couldn’t pee for pretty much the whole time I was in labour (I guess she was squishing my bladder the wrong way or whatever ) which after nine months of peeing every 10 minutes, was like, hilarious! Not! So after she was born it was like, oh yay I have a baby, but OMG THIS IS THE BEST PEE EVER.

  15. It’s like this chorus:

    “Quite a feeling, quite a relief, quite a mess
    Quite a feeling, quite a relief, quite a mess
    quite a mess”

  16. I love that people are remembering their best pees…haha…i remember mine…my geometry teacher in 10th grade would NOT let me leave class to go to the bathroom…i had to go soooo bad!…I held it what seemed like the longest class ever!…Felt so good when I got to go finally…This is definitely a good one! :)

  17. I hate the holding but enjoy the release. more often then not I let out a WOOOOOOOO! while it flows.
    exhilarating to be honest.

  18. Try going to a parade during Mardi Gras and drinking and only having 2 portos/5 city blocks! I was in the worst pain ever!

  19. Once I had drunk 2 bottles of water then sat in a bumpy car 4 4-5 hours I had to unbutton my belt it hurt so bad I hate public bathrooms but wen I got home it was cold in the house which made me have to go even more I finally went and it felt AWSOME :D

  20. i once spent a fantastic day drinking copious cups of tea with my best friend. inevitably, on the drive home, i felt the need to pee. it was late on a saturday afternoon and i was travelling the route between a seaside town and the nearest city. traffic was slow, my camper van was over 30 years old and suspension was not it’s strong point, i had two sleeping babies in the back , there was not one public toilet en route. i reached the point where i seriously considered just letting go, right there on my van seat, i figured i could always source another seat. but sanity prevailed and as soon as i reached the city i pulled into the street next to the museum with the intention of using their toilets. but a full bladder and the prospect of carrying two sleep-heavy babes up the steps and through the building to the toilets at the back was too much. in a flash i pulled the curtains in the van, whipped open a cupboard and searched for a suitable container, and found a saucepan. a camping saucepan with a pattern of brown enamel flowers and a half melted handle. i used it, it was bliss. afterwards i emptied it down a drain and threw it in the bin. the awesome feeling lasted all the way home and into the next day.

  21. man, you should give it more credit for this awesome thing. the numbre 529 is nothing for the satisfaction of peeing after holding it forever.

  22. Oh gosh yeah! I’ve had a few of these moments that really stand out. I have somewhat of a large bladder capacity so can (and often do) hold it for hours. The only problem is that when my bladder reaches its capacity it lets me know in no uncertain terms and I get very strong urges thereafter to urinate, and, of course, it seems to happen at the worst possible times. Many times desperate, I barely get to the toilet in time and release an absolute gusher that seems to last forever, usually with a loud ahhh (and, yes those pee shivers too!). Oh the shear bliss and relief of a much needed pee.

  23. One moment really sticks out in my mind. i dont have a large bladder capacity so during road trips i tend not to drink anything unless i’m guaranteed a rest stop. I had been holding it for nearly an hour because my mother was mean and by the time i couldn’t hold it anymore, she had pulled over to a small picnic area and i was so annoyed to see there was no outhouse, so i ran to the bushes. Nothing had ever felt so good but the feeling was shortly lived because of how hard my muscles had been working they were very sore once they were done. But damn it felt good because i had unbuttoned my jeans, moved my seat belt around, fidgeted, nearly threw up to prevent myself from laughing, and held my nose to stop a few sneezes. Looking at these comments makes me damn glad i’m not the only one who remembers an epic bathroom break!

    1. Yeah, long trips and/or traffic is one of the worst situations to be in when your bladder is full. One bathroom need occurred when I was about 14. My mom took my sister and myself down to the New Jersey shore for the day. On the return trip my bladder was achingly full and I was fidgety, sort of how you described. I told my mom I needed to pee and it wasn’t going to wait and she told me to pee into my beach towel if I need to go that badly. Well, I did, and with my younger sister looking on. Although it sure felt good to go, it was uncomfortable because I had to stop and start several times so I didn’t soak thru the towel.

      Another epic bathroom break was related to traffic. Had been holding it for sometime as it was and got stuck in construction traffic. I pulled over to the side of the highway, but no real cover, so I just squatted near the far side of my car with car door open in hopes of at least a little privacy but at this stage I really didn’t care if anyone saw me. I pulled my pants down and moved them out of the way as best as possible and just let out a huge gush of pee almost immediately. I just had to go so desperately and oh it was such a relief to finally be able to urinate!

  24. It’s especially awesome after being in a movie, and not wanting to miss anything, so when the movie ends you’re literally running to the bathroom. And then you’re like “aaaaah.”

    1. Harry Potter 7? Haha we went yesterday and peeing after that felt sooooo good :) But this story also ties in with another awesome post: Sneaking in lollies/drink to the movie theatres. Niel is right: Contraband Pepsi tastes better!

  25. Being a bit of a soccer mom, I can so relate to the kid’s soccer games. Most game locations only offer port-a-potties, which I refuse to use; most soccer moms I have talked to also hate them and will only use them if an extreme emergency arises. Rooting support for the kids not only helps them but it helps me to control my bladder too! And then factor in the chilly outdoor temps. Believe me, I’m not the only parent out there bouncing around to try to hold it. Then when I get home the urge gets even worse and I tell the kids I have to go pee NOW and run off to the bathroom, hopefully in time, and sigh with relief after holding it in for so long. I admit, it is a great feeling to finally be able to pee after holding it in that long!

  26. I was in high school at a basketball game and my girl friend and I had to catch a ride home for a long ride home- we didn’t have time to pee before we left for home which was about 2 hours away–pretty soon we both had to pee soo bad but we didn’t know the man who we caught the ride with and couldn’t get ourselves to ask to stop for a potty break.. I was in misery and pretty soon the driver stopped for gas and my friend and I RAN into the old gas station and she took the toilet and luckily there was a drain in the floor and I used that facility and boy, was it ever a relief..It has been many years since then but I can still remember the great feeling of having been able to empty a very full bladder!!!!

  27. I’m blessed with the ability to mass produce renal calculi. Some as large as maca-damion nuts, a few smaller and kinder than damion, but one time they all pitched in and made me a string of pearls…dared the specialists call the “sharp-shaled beauty”. Clearly none of them having had to endure the UTI’s and chronic pain of a rhythmic boot for years. Far worse than child labor, I don’t even want the prize for. When I can’t pee I’m in big trouble!!!
    Treatments have all been done at teaching hospitals, some making urology history, having every known diagnostic procedure, shunts, tubes, bags, stents, needles and having been lazered from the inside and out! If they had any value, I’d have lots of money and if given a cut for being a source of study and entertainment, I’d definately be wealthy in $.
    But I do have to say, to all the specialists and scores of medical students, who have with good intention taken my modesty and to those who have stood ’round the washroom with gloves, catheters and other type balloons for me…the cheers and applause for the sensation of clean pipes and the sound of restorative relief… there is bliss in the ability of tinkling again…
    “Sweeeeet Emotion!!!”

  28. I cannot believe I wrote that, right here! You know you’ve been humbled when….

  29. Lol had that feeling today after running up 3 flights of stairs and finally getting into my apartment I was able to feel relieved! Awesome!

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