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Being a patient means having to practice patience

Being a patient means having to practice patience

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This is part three in my quest for abdominal pain relief.

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My appointment with the general surgeon went better than I expected.  The main reason for this was that he actually listened.  Not only that, he seemed to genuinely care, and if he didn’t he did a great job faking it.  While waiting for the surgeon to come into the exam room, I began feeling annoyed because he was running late.  The longer I waited, the more anxious I became.  I had to force myself to breathe deeply and to remind myself that I needed to remain calm for this appointment.  Lucky for me, I was able to find a comfortable position on the exam bed and took a short nap.  This was the best thing that could have happened.  When the surgeon entered the room, I rolled over and said “Good morning sunshine!”, even though it was long after 2pm.  This caused the surgeon to burst into laughter and set the tone for my appointment.  He thanked me for having a sunny disposition, as many of his patients had read him the riot act for running behind that day.  By the end of our appointment, I realized why he was running late.  This particular surgeon, doesn’t care about appointment time frames, his goal is to serve the patient the best he can no matter how long it takes.  Instead of the typical 15-20 minute appointment, he spent well over an hour with me.  He listened carefully as I explained my entire history with ovarian cysts, adhesions, and my botched hysterectomy.  He would even repeat my account as I shared it in order to make sure he fully understood what I had been through and was currently going through.  And the best part was that unlike my primary doctor who provided him with little information, he made sure to send all the details along with his suspicions to the surgeons he was referring me to.

Overall, this appointment was productive and I left feeling like we are heading in the right direction.  However, I did leave with a little disappointment.  Because my case is complicated, he feels that a general surgeon would not be the best answer for me.  Instead he is assembling a team to tackle what is going on inside of my body.  He is referring me to a gynecological oncologist surgeon because he believes there is more going on inside of me besides adhesions.  He agrees that adhesions that have stemmed from scarring are a big part of the problem, but he also believes that I may have endometriosis. This is something that was never discussed or addressed in the past because everyone was either trying to cover their bottoms from the botched surgery or wash their hands from me as they didn’t want to become entangled in a lawsuit.  Another reason he is sending me to this other surgeon is that even though past surgeons had removed the hot spots for ovarian remnants that were left behind after my botched hysterectomy, there could be more in other places as well as remnants of my uterus.  He also said that there is strong evidence to suggest that my pelvic floor is collapsing.  I will also be seeing a surgical gastrointologist.  The reason for this surgeon isn’t because he doubts that my digestive issues are being caused by adhesions, instead it is to make sure that they are the only reason and to access any damage that the adhesions may have caused to my digestive system.   We also discussed and began scheduling a series of tests that will further prove that my digestive issues are only symptoms and not the cause of my abdominal pain.

I know, I know, this sounds great.  So why am I disappointed?  Because my hopes for experiencing any relief before the end of summer no longer exists.  In fact, with the amount of tests that need to be performed, I will be surprised if I have surgery before the year ends.  The soonest my colonoscopy could be scheduled for is August 17.  I am waiting to hear from the surgeons scheduling offices and will be shocked if I am able to see them before September.  Because I haven’t had any relief from abdominal pain since the end of December, I just want to cry when I think about spending the rest of the year with this pain.

I had to have a little chat with myself this past weekend.  (Yes, I talk to myself, get over it!)  I had to remind myself to be patient.  Unlike past experiences, I was not being blown off or dismissed.  My doctors are listening and working towards helping me.  I also had to remind myself that I need to keep living.  Long ago, I would basically stop living whenever intense pain took over for extended amounts of time.  I refuse to allow my body to keep me from enjoying the things I do.  Of course I have to be realistic in regards to how much I can do, but I can’t allow this pain to completely stop my life.  Instead of being grumpy about not being up to going to Disneyland 2-5 times a month, I am grateful that my husband and daughter make the time to go and don’t mind pushing me around Disneyland once a month.  Instead of putting my life on hold, I am continuing to make plans.  This coming weekend I will be at Disneyland and the following I will be enjoying sounds, sites, and smell of the ocean while lying on a sandy beach.

Each day I remind myself to be patient with my body.  To enjoy what it allows me to do and not stress about what it won’t.  This is something that I will have to do for the rest of my life.  In my fantasy life, after surgery I would never experience this type of pain again.  But the reality is that I will.  If I am lucky it will follow the timeline that it did after my last surgery.  I would be thrilled to go another 7 years or more before reaching this level of agony again.  I also acknowledge that this pain may return even sooner.  But no matter how soon I experience relief or how quickly the pain returns, I must continue to be patient with myself and to live my life the best that I can.

Wishing you a day filled with many reasons to smile and gentle hugs,

The Disabled Diva

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The Disabled Diva’s Unofficial Disneyland Vacation Planning Guide

Are chronic conditions or disability keeping you from planning a Disneyland vacation?

Guests of Disneyland should enter the gates ready to have fun, not fretting over trying to figure out what they will be able to do or how to navigate Disneyland’s handicapped system.

Disneyland’s handicapped system was frustrating even before they made it more complicated.  The changes made take time to get used to, time that most don’t have when on vacation.  I don’t know about you, but I go on vacation to have fun, not to be stressed!  Since the changes to the system went into effect a couple of years ago, I have had countless people stop me in the parks asking if they could do this or that.  Most have no clue how the handicapped system or queues work, let alone which rides or attractions are wheelchair friendly.  Not only do I get stopped while in the parks, I also receive questions from readers on a weekly basis.  Then one day it hit me! Wouldn’t it be awesome if these people could have access to this information prior to arriving at Disneyland? And that is why I wrote this guide.

 

 

While Disneyland provides basic accessible information on their website, it fails to fully explain how the system works.  This is why this guide is a must for anyone with a chronic condition or disability.  I expand upon the basic information and leave no doubts as to how to enter, board, and exit each attraction.  After reading this book, you will fully understand how the virtual queues work and what to expect when visiting with a disability.

I wish I would have had this information long ago, as it took months for me to figure it out the new system.  Don’t waste your precious vacation time by trying to figure out what to do and where to go!  Order your copy today!

Download your free copy today!

Wishing you a day filled with magical memories!

The Disabled Diva

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The Disabled Diva and Disneyability are not affiliated with the Disney Company or Disneyland.

Realistic Expectations

Realistic Expectations

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What we, the chronically ill and disabled expect from our bodies on a daily basis or while on vacation can make or break our experiences.  It is common for those who are newly diagnosed or for those who have yet to accept that their condition is here to stay to make plans the way we used to when we were well.  Sometimes we get caught up in the excitement of knowing we are going to get away from our daily lives, that we forget that there is no escape from our conditions.  Unfortunately this leads to disappointment and frustration when our bodies fail to allow us to do everything we had hoped to.

*Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links. Meaning that at no additional cost to you, I receive a commission when you make a purchase through my links. The proceeds earned fund the giveaways I host in my Facebook groups.

This drug-free pain-relief device has taken my pain management plan to a new level of awesomeness! Click here to check it out and don’t forget that my discount code DIVA will save you $55.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When making plans it is important to keep our conditions and limitations in mind at all times.   It took me close to 10 years to accept my conditions and to begin planning my daily life around them and a few more years until I began planning outings and vacations with them in mind.  Here are a few tips to help you plan your next getaway:

  1. If you can barely handle a weekly trip to the grocery store, don’t expect your body to be able to handle outings that require you to stand or walk for more than a few hours at a time. This doesn’t mean that you should totally avoid these types of activities, instead think of ways to make them work for you. This may mean bringing or renting a wheelchair or scooter.
  2. Expect your pain level to be higher at the end of the day and for the days to follow. Back when I was well, I would push myself. I would be sore by the end of the day, but felt fine after a good night’s sleep. With my chronic conditions I not only feel worse by the end of the day, but I begin each following day with a higher level of pain than I did the day before.
  3. Expect to need more pain medication than you normally do. Your average amount of daily medication won’t cut it when you are pushing yourself to do more than you normally do.
  4. Expect to be worn out when you arrive at your destination. Let’s face it, traveling is exhausting. Because of this I have learned to gift myself with a minimum of one days rest. While writing this I am on vacation in Denver, CO. My body and my soul is thrilled that I planned 3 full days without any reason to leave my hotel prior to getting together with family and taking in the sights. Typically one day would have been fine, but the weather forecast made me realize that I would need more. I knew I made the right decision when a day that was forecasted to have light snow turned into a blizzard. While feeling beat up by the weather, I am in better shape than if I had scheduled any outings during those days.
  5. Expect downtime after you return home. Gone are the days of going on vacation and resuming my normal life upon returning home. I try not to schedule any commitments during my first week back home. If I am lucky I won’t need that much time to get back into my daily groove. Sometimes I need longer, especially when I don’t follow my own advice!
  6. Don’t expect to have the same experience as your able bodied friends. Planning a trip based on the experience your able bodied friends had is a recipe for disaster. There is no way you will be able to replicate their experience. Be happy with what you are able to do and NEVER compare your experience with someone who doesn’t have the exact same conditions and/or limitations!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This may sound silly, but when I am planning outings or vacations I visualize my conditions as additional passengers.  By thinking of them as individuals accompanying me, I am better able to plan for their needs.  It’s kind of like planning a trip with an infant or small child.  I think of all the things I do and use on a daily basis to keep them comfortable and from having fits.  Because I use heating pads and ice packs at home, I always travel with portable heating wraps and ice packs.  I am less apt to feel depressed or discouraged with this way of thinking as well.  I shouldn’t feel selfish when planning for and around my conditions, but I do because I feel that I am only thinking of my needs.  Thinking of my conditions as additional guests makes it easier as I always want those accompanying me to have a good time.  When thinking of myself I tend to gloss over what I can or can’t do or think that I will magically be able to push past them.  Yet when I think of them as passengers I can clearly see their (really my) needs.

Do you have any other realistic expectations to add to this list?  I’d love to hear them!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you considering or planning a trip to Disneyland?  Be sure to read The Disabled Diva’s Unofficial Accessible Vacation Guide before booking your vacation.  This guide has all the information you will need no matter what your disability.  Don’t waste time trying to figure out Disneyland’s accessible system while in the park download your copy today and enter the park ready to experience the magic that is Disney.

 

 

 

 

 

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Vacation Downtime

Vacation Downtime

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In the past I was on the go from the moment I left home to go on vacation until the moment I arrived home.  After chronic illnesses entered my life, I began scheduling downtime prior to and following my trips.  However, this was not enough after my conditions progressed.  In the past year I have realized how important it is to NOT schedule outings or expect my body to be willing to leave my bed for a minimum of a day or two after arriving at my destination.  Whether by train, plane, or automobile, traveling takes a toll on a chronically ill body.


 

 

 

 

 

 

After two days of riding in a car, my body is thanking me for not scheduling anything that requires leaving the hotel for the next few days.  Typically I would start scheduling outings for the second day, but because I have four fun filled days planned with family at the end of the week, I knew I needed to take precautions.  To further complicate things Denver is expecting not one, but two snow storms this week.  My body is not a fan of storms of any kind, but the storms that Denver beat me up like no other.  I lived here for two years prior to getting diagnosed and it was here that I first began noticing my weather related pain.  The bad news is I know that I will be experiencing more pain than normal this week.  The good news is that because I am expecting it, I am better prepared to plan around it.

Bring along a heating pad to help with muscle aches

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anyways, by allowing for a day of rest after arriving, I give my body a chance to recover from the increase of pain that was the result of traveling.  It also opens new opportunities.  For example, last night I lacked the stamina to go out for dinner.  Instead we chose to eat at our hotel.  This particular hotel offers their guests dinner in the lobby several nights a week.  So instead of having to go out in the cold, we just went downstairs.  Tables were filling up fast.  A woman, traveling alone, and my family spotted the only open table at the same time.  I asked if we could join her.  She was delighted to have the company.  Throughout our dinner conversation we discovered that we only lived a few hours away from each other in Southern California.  We also discovered that we had a lot more in common.  We had such a wonderful time chatting that we were both shocked when we realized that we had been talking for three hours!  After saying goodbye with hugs, I retreated back to my room, medicated, and had a wonderful night’s sleep. Had I scheduled an activity for today, I wouldn’t have been as relaxed as I was last night and most likely wouldn’t have engaged in a lively conversation.

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Did someone say SNOW!!??!!??

Did someone say SNOW!!??!!??

Today I am sore, but not nearly as bad as if I would have pushed myself to go out last night or somewhere today.  For those who say, what’s the point of getting away when you could rest at home? I have this to say…. Yes, I could be resting at home.  I would also see all the housework that I will never catch up with, I would see all of my unfinished projects, and more.  Resting a day or more before venturing out of my hotel is way more relaxing.  Between housekeeping and room service, I don’t really have much to stress about.

So while not exciting, my first day is just what I needed.  I am thrilled to spend this day napping and writing.

Planning a Disneyland vacation? Take advantage of the resort’s pools or spa services on your down day!

Do you schedule a day of rest after traveling?  If not, you may want to give it a try!

Wishing you a day filled with gentle hugs and many reasons to smile!

The Disabled Diva

Download your FREE copy today!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Super Power I Really Wish For

The super power I really wish for.

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Admit it; at some point in your life you have wished that you possessed a super power.  Some wished for the power of flight, invisibility, the ability to walk through walls, and more.  As a child my super power wish was for the power of invisibility.  The reason for this was that I wanted to be a detective and thought this particular power would help me solve crimes.  As an adult living with several chronic conditions, I often joke that my super power is living with chronic pain.  However when asked which power I would want, I always replied with the power to fly.

The reason I always chose the power to fly had to do with my physical pain.  Flying would be a great way to get around when my feet, legs, and spine prevent me from walking.  While flying my bones, joints, and muscles would be free from pressure.  While still a desirable power, I realized that there was a power that would be even more beneficial.

I was feeling discouraged the other evening when I realized that I was months behind on several projects.  Cluster flares and/or one flare after another have derailed my deadlines.  Feeling frustrated, I thought about how awesome it would be to be able to stop time.  Like I discussed in Not Enough Time to Manage, pain and fatigue limit my productive hours.  Not only do I have limited productive hours, I lose days and weeks due to flares.  I have accepted that I will never be pain-free, but I still struggle with the thought that I will never be current on projects or even household chores.

Imagine being able to stop time every time a flare hit.  Instead of coming out of a flare and finding myself even farther behind than I was prior, I could be on track.  Procrastination would be the only reason for falling behind.  Procrastination is something that I can control unlike time lost due to flares.

If I could stop time I would no longer feel like I was living in an alternate universe.  I would no longer feel overwhelmed and depressed by how much my friends and family have done with their lives while I was riding out my latest flare.

The downside to my wish of being able to stop time is that nobody would ever see just how awful my conditions really are.  Stopping time would deprive those who give so freely of themselves to help others.  It would also hinder people like me from raising awareness. Because why would we need to raise awareness for something people aren’t able to witness?  The biggest pitfall would be that if I stopped time, there would be no one to help or care for me when I needed it most.

So after careful consideration I have decided to accept my super power of living with chronic pain. It’s not something I would ever have wished for, but I also recognize that not everyone could handle it.  Super heroes in the movies never get to choose their powers, so it would be silly to think that I could choose mine.  Like those super heroes, I too will continue to find ways to use my power for good.

What super powers have you wished for?

Wishing you a day filled with smiles and gentle hugs,

The Disabled Diva

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Living multiple lives.

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Originally this post was going to be called “Living a double life”, but then I realized that I don’t just lead two lives, I live multiple lives.  What I mean by this is that my life when going through a flare is totally different than when my Psoriatic Arthritis is in remission and my remission days are nothing like my average pain days.  The things that I can or can’t do differ between each one, along with how I react to situations.  Many of us that suffer from chronic diseases feel like we are living multiple lives, there is the life people see when we leave our homes and the life no one but those closest to us see when we are unable to leave our beds.  It is no wonder that people have such a hard time comprehending what it is like to live with our conditions as they are usually only seeing one of our lives.  The three lives that I lead are as follows: Flaring, Average, and Remission.

Remission:  This is the life that most people see.  When my Psoriatic Arthritis is in remission, my bones hurt less, my spine allows me to sit, drive, stand, and walk for more than a few minutes. When in remission, as long as my other conditions aren’t flaring, I only have to medicate at bedtime as my daytime pain is tolerable as long as I am careful.  It is also easier during this time to sense when I am overdoing something and recognize when I need to rest.  When I am in remission I am able to cook dinner for my family almost every night.  I am able to help out with housework.  I am able to drive myself to the store and shop independently,  While in remission I possess a positive attitude.  During this time I will volunteer more and attend functions that I would normally pass on when living my other two lives.  During this life, I have little time for television.  I am a busy gal who acknowledges that this life could end at any moment and I want to do as much as I possibly can before it ends.  And that is the downside of this life.  This life tends to make me a bit manic.  Never knowing how long it will last or when it will return frustrates me and is why I use that time to take care of household projects that most people would handle over the course of a year.  Some years I only experience one remission and sometimes I am blessed with multiple ones.  The shortest amount of time that this life has lasted is approximately one week and the longest is three months.  During this life I am very social, online and in person.  I not only have the energy to do more, I have the mental strength to be there for my friends and family.  Only during this life am I able to handle a weekly phone call from more than one person.  It is during this life that I am up for going out for coffee and of course spending as much time at Disneyland as I can.  For the most part, during this life I not only get dressed every day, but I also do my hair and make-up.

Average: My average life is probably the most confusing to others.  During this life my pain fluctuates between lower than average and above average.  Some days I am able to get out of the house on my own and others I need assistance.  Some of these days I am able to enjoy a phone call and still have the mental and physical energy to draw some memes, write a blog post or work on my latest book. There’s a 50/50 chance that I will be exhausted from a morning phone call.  On the days that a mere conversation exhausts me, I spend my day catching up on my favorite shows on Hulu or Netflix.   Often during this life I will cook one or two large meals that I will split up and have my family eat as left overs.  Most of my time is spent either sitting and working from bed or in my recliner as that is where I am most comfortable.  During my average life I am often able to enjoy three major outings like Disneyland or a conference within a month.  Some of the time I am fine running errands by myself and other times I have to have someone else drive me.  Some days I can tolerate my pain until the evening and on others I begin medicating before getting up to pour my first cup of coffee. Unlike my remission life in which I tend to be hyper and manic, my average days are fairly mellow.  I rarely feel rushed or like I am facing a deadline.  In this life I pick and choose what I commit myself to do.  I only schedule what I feel is most important and keep the days prior and following free as to help ensure that I will be able to keep my commitment. On average I get dressed, brush my hair, and paint my face 50% of the time.  While each day varies, I don’t experience the sadness of having a bad day as I do when my remission life ends because with this life I will most likely have a decent day within a day or two.  I am calm and not easily rattled during this life.  When faced with a problem I am able to calmly look at it from all directions and take my time in making decisions.  For the most part I am pretty happy during this life.  Because this is the life that I lead the most, it is most familiar and I have learned to go with its flow.  Because I have days that I am able to function outside of my house, whether it be on my own or with assistance, people assume that I am functioning at that level all the time.  They do not understand that they are only seeing me at my best during this period.

Flare: I won’t lie, I do not like this life.  There is nothing enjoyable about not having the strength to lift my head from my pillow or to struggle staying upright as I walk to the bathroom or kitchen.  I hate not having the mental strength to hold a conversation.  I despise the pain that consumes my body.  This is the life that only those who live with me or spend a lot of time with me will ever witness.  This is the life in which most of my time is spent lying in bed falling in and out of sleep.  I rarely get dressed and only brush my hair when it doesn’t hurt to do so.  On rare occasions usually at the beginning of a flare I will leave the house with assistance and medicated.  The downside to pushing myself at this stage is while I appear to be social and doing okay, I am not.  My pain level is so high that no amount of pain medication can keep it from consuming my mind and body.  Most are fooled as I am often able to blurt out a few sentences that make me appear to be all together.  Unfortunately my pain is so consuming that it overrides the moment and I rarely have any recollection of it, as was the case with last Christmas Eve.  Nothing is accomplished during my flare life.  I may or may not have the mental capacity to be able to watch my favorite TV shows.  I may or may not be able to write a paragraph.  I often take hours or days to respond to a text and avoid answering my phone.  Besides all of this, the most frustrating part of my flare life is that I never know when it will take over.  Because I have multiple chronic conditions, one may flare while another is remission.  A flare can last for a few days or months and Lord help me when I experience a cluster flare.  Unlike my other two lives in which I can recall everything I did, I have to play detective when my flare life ends to find out what I did, who I talked to, and what I said.  While life is difficult during my other two lives, they do not rob me of time.  They do not steal my memories.  Unless someone comes to my door unannounced, most will never see this life.  Even if someone does just show up, they may still not see it as if I am home alone I most likely will not answer the door.  One reason is because of the pain I experience just getting to the front door, and the other reason is when people see me in this state they start flinging questions asking how can they help.  The last thing I am able to do while living this life is to clearly think of how each person could help me.  It is during this life that I cherish and need the people in my life who just take it upon themselves to do something to help.  It could be bringing dinner over for my family or coming by to say “Hey, I am here to help you, I am going to clean your kitchen while you go back to bed”.  The chances of my husband or daughter sharing my current state when someone drops by is a rarity.  I don’t believe it is because they don’t wish to share, instead like me, they have come to accept that it is just a part of life.  Not only that, but most people don’t like admitting that they need help.  I know I don’t, but I imagine it is even harder to admit that you are struggling when you are able bodied. It is during my flare life that I feel most alone even when there are people in my home.  I struggle to get my thoughts from my brain out of my mouth, so most remain unspoken.  My attitude sucks compared to my other lives.  Frustration and sadness consume me.  I may or may not overreact to simple situations.  It depends on whether I was able to process what really happened or was said.  I have a short fuse and no tolerance for stupidity during this life.

Overall I prefer my average life.  It is the one that I not only experience the most, it is also the one that I have learned to let go of expectations and to go with the flow.  While I love the lower pain level of my remission life, I don’t like living like there is no tomorrow.

I have yet to learn how to mesh my three lives into one and I won’t be holding by breath waiting.  Because how do you plan and schedule chores, work, or activities around three distinctly different lives that don’t follow any schedule?  So until then I will have to keep on living each life to the best of my ability. Do you feel like you are living multiple lives because of your conditions?

Wishing you a day filled with many smiles and gentle hugs,

The Disabled Diva

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The joy of a normal bowel movement

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Update is at the end of the post.

Warning this post is full of crap!  Do not continue reading if talking about diarrhea and poop makes you uncomfortable!  With that out of the way, it’s time for some potty talk!

I have been living with my chronic illnesses for 16 years.  Prior to that I never gave much thought to my bowel movements.  There was no reason to.  I not only went at the same time every day, but I rarely dealt with diarrhea or constipation.  My poop was nothing to get excited or worried about.

When my chronic illnesses were first diagnosed, I treated them with pharmaceutical medications.  This led to painful bouts of constipation.  Later when my abdominal adhesions began pulling and twisting my bowels, my body would flip flop between constipation and diarrhea. After awhile I began to forget what it was like to have a normal bowel movement or even what a normal turd looked like.  This continued until approximately a year and a half ago when diarrhea took over full-time.  Every over the counter and prescription medication made it worse.  I tried one doctor recommended diet after another, nothing helped except for surgery.  I would experience relief after my surgeons released and cleaned up my abdominal adhesions while performing surgery for other reasons.  The problem with surgery as a solution is that the relief is short lived.  The longest amount of time that I had relief from them was 6 months and the shortest was 3 weeks.  The average relief time was only 3 months and why I would never ask my doctor to surgically clean them up unless I had to have surgery for another reason.  With no options to end my diarrhea, I learned to accept that it was a part of my life.

 

There were times that my diarrhea held me hostage in bathroom stalls for close to an hour! There was one instance in which I was crapping my brains out at Disneyland when my daughter came in to check on me since I had been in there for 40 minutes.  Often it hit without warning.  Yes, I have crapped my pants!! This is why I haven’t left the house without an adult diaper for the past year and a half.  Good times! NOT!!  While not something most would admit to, I am not ashamed to wear adult diapers.  They make clean up a lot easier!

However, there is more to suffering from chronic diarrhea than squirting brown liquid from your rear.  It is painful.  My stomach and intestines swell and hurt.  I experience terrible intestinal and side muscle spasms.  It is exhausting!!  There have been times that I have experienced so much abdominal pain while on the toilet that I lacked the strength to go back to bed.  Instead I would just curl up on the bathroom floor and rest until I felt I could make it back to bed.

Why all this talk of poo? Because two weeks ago I had my first normal bowel movement!!!  Can I get a Hallelujah?!!!  For the first time in what felt like forever, I am experiencing regular bowel movements and real turds!!!!  I wish I had taken a picture of my family’s faces when I excitedly shared my good news, because it was hilarious.

How did this happen?  To be honest I am not 100% sure, but I am testing it out and if what I am about to share continues to work, I won’t be stopping it.  Two days before my first normal bowel movement, I began replacing two meals a day with instant oatmeal.  This is why I brought it to have for lunch on my last Disneyland play day.  To test this theory, I skipped a couple of days this past week and guess what? My diarrhea returned!!! The next day I went back on my oatmeal diet and my normal bowel movements returned!

So we will see if this continues or if it is just a fluke.  All I know is that I will never take having a normal bowel movement for granted again.  After living with my illnesses for 16 years, I am forever surprised by the things that I used to take for granted.

I will continue to update this post to share if this is really the end of my daily diarrhea or if it is just something that helps now and then.  All I know is that I love that I found something that isn’t a drug or that requires surgery.  Here’s to leaving the restroom with a smile on my face instead of tears from exhaustion and pain!

***UPDATE**

I have had to stop eating oatmeal for the moment.  Most of my digestive issues stem from abdominal adhesions.  The adhesions attach and wrap themselves around various internal organs.  The organs they like the most are my bowels.  For the past week my abdominal adhesions have been pulling and twisting my bowels.  Firm poo has made this more painful than usual.  I can’t believe I am saying this, but I am looking forward to having my bowel movements return to a liquid state.  Once my adhesions loosen I will go back to eating oatmeal and avoiding the foods that give me diarrhea.

Wishing you a day filled with gentle hugs, many reasons to smile, and regular bowel movements!

The Disabled Diva

 

 

 

 

 

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