Here is my first update. There are so very many things going on with my health that I won’t go over every last detail in this first post. Suffice it to say that I am currently suffering from several different chronic illnesses caused by my auto-immune system. I’m afraid that if I give you everything all at once you might run screaming from the computer. Yes, it is that bad, (remember no sugar coating) so we’ll start small, well not really, but here goes. I’ll begin with the most pressing challenge of the day, Crohn’s disease. If that phrase doesn’t send shivers down your spine, click on the link and read up. I am literally starving to death. I spend most of my day in or near a bathroom because the symptoms can come quickly and unexpectedly. Currently I cannot keep food down. I am either suffering from bouts of painful cramping and diarrhea or uncontrolled vomiting both of which produce copious amounts of blood. (I warned you, NOT PRETTY!) Today I am having a mild flare up. This means that I cannot leave the house without risk of having to stop for a restroom. It means that I cannot eat a single meal without anticipating cramping. I’m not talking mild stomach pain either, we are talking full on, double you over, break out in a cold sweat, can’t breath, cramping. It makes me tired, it makes me hurt all over, and most of all I am so hungry I can hardly stand it. The problem is that knowing what happens when I eat makes it mentally repulsive to eat no matter how hungry I may get. Add to this the fever and chills, feeling faint, and the chronic fatigue that comes from starving to death and you have a small picture into my life as of late.
Now that you are thoroughly grossed out! I have to say that even on a day like today I can find humor in the fact that if you are anywhere in my neighborhood or out shopping my local haunts I can tell you, without fail, where the closest and best bathrooms are. My mom and I joked several years ago that we should start our own “Triple AAA” reviews and books about public bathrooms. We’d rate them using moons instead of stars of course. Five moon bathrooms are the porcelain throne of your dreams and a ½ moon bathroom consists of a hole in the floor. We might actually have something here, seriously! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve barely avoided an accident because I pull up to the gas station with the ½ moon rating and, blanching at the thought, decide to run over to the one across the street which rates more like a 3 moon affair. It is sad the lengths to which I will go to preserve some amount of dignity even in severe agony because I’m risking that very dignity for pride’s sake! Oh the ironies of life!
So when you sit down to your meals today, take a moment to enjoy. I mean really enjoy it. Don’t beat yourself up over what you’re eating, don’t think about the calories, don’t even think twice. I don’t mean go out on an unhealthy binge rather, just enjoy the fact that when you taste, chew, and swallow your food it is most likely going to provide you some type of nourishment and satisfaction (especially if it’s a Snicker’s bar mmm, my favorite!) Appreciate the fact that it won’t create excruciating pain and all of the loveliness that follows that pain when I eat. Take a bite for me and maybe, vicariously speaking of course, I can absorb some of that bliss from afar. The lesson today is a common one that will be repeated often on my blog, don’t take ANYTHING for granted!