Ah memories...of my very first time...
When my son was about 10 or 11 years old, I drove him to his favorite indoor mall for sports gear while guzzling a Diet Coke the whole 45 minute drive. When we were almost there I knew I had to go right away, but I was sure I could hold it until I made it to the mall restroom. As soon as I walked into the crowded mall, I was surprised when I felt myself start to pee, and absolutely shocked when I had no control over making the gusher stop!
I had to grab my son and confide my predicament and ask for his help to cover it up. I carried my large purse in front of me and he followed close behind, blocking everyone's view. Outside the restroom I backed myself against the wall and handed him a fistful of money to run over to Wal-Mart, and told him where to buy me a pair of sweatpants to change into.
On the ride home I had to give him a calm, cheery, normal type explanation ("Well, son, this sort of thing happens to grownups all the time...blah blah...age...blah blah...having babies... blah, blah, blah.") or some BS like that...I've blocked some of this out of my mind. I wasn't dx'd with MS for another 20 years or so. I don't even want to speculate on how much this episode may have traumatized the poor kid...and please, I don't want any of you men here to tell me. But I'm pretty sure I bought him anything he asked for at the mall that day.
Ever since, I've worn at least a small Poise pad when I leave the house, but I've learned to read my body and know what, when, where, how much to eat and drink (most of the time). Caffeine is the thing that causes all the problems, and only rarely water (when I've drunk tons of it fast). I don't drink coffee, so it may have something to do with the Diet Coke, so I only sip them now and then. I never drink caffeine on or before a trip or before a meeting at work. I rarely drink alcohol, because it will do the same thing.
I drink tons of bottled water (bottled so it won't spill) - plenty at home before work, plenty when I exercise, plenty on weekends, and sip it all day at work. I started that habit years ago when I read how good it was for you. And I don't recall ever having a UTI. I always know where the closest bathroom is, though, and stop drinking about an hour before I go out somewhere. I also do Kegel exercises regularly – a BIG help – and as long as I'm only drinking water I can usually hold it till I make it to a bathroom. I know myself so well, I actually seem to have less of a problem than anyone else in my office since they're my age or older and drink caffeine all day.
Ah, memories...I wish better ones to all.