For anyone who’s interested why I’m so cranky and uninclined to post anything in the past few days, I’ll fill you in. If you are inclined to not give a damn, or blame some sort of strange mortal sin on the misfortune that’s befallen my family as of late, you can stop reading here. Friends may continue to the extended entry.
My mom’s really ill and currently in the hospital until further notice. She has Chron’s disease, and has for many years. She had a bowel resection 9-ish years ago. The longest most people go without having an accute attack after such a surgery is 10 years, so this was expected, but is still unpleasant.
Her current situation is one of intense pain, and a forcible rejection and ejection of anything that enters her digestive tract. She’s currently on a lot of morphene and industrial strength Gravol. She may be allowed to leave after she’s well enough to complete the battery of intrusive and uncomfortable tests that the doctors are wont to administer. However, it’s a formidable task when these tests involve infiltrating the digestive tract with things that it wants to forcibly reject and eject – and really, the tests are uncomfortable enough when you’re “healthy”.
Having an attack is only the beginning though. This is the first step on a long road my family’s taken before. The attacks will continue to come, more and more frequently as time passes. Foods will be limited, severe lactose intolerance will usually present itself, physical activity will be a challenge. Drugs will have to be taken that morph the mind and body in unpleasant ways. All of this will eventually culminate in another surgery, which will end up with a lengthy hospital stay, 3 months of zero activity and modified bed rest and a disgusting medically formualted liquid diet. All for the hope of another 9 or 10 years of relative health.
And I say relative because the symptoms never really go away. They just subside enough that she can eat “most” things, and will luckily suffer only mild attacks, instead of accute ones that require hospitalization. More injections will be necessary to supply the body with the nutrients that the diseased portion of bowel would have absorbed had it not been removed. There is no cure for this disease. Surgery is a temporary treatment for this “terminal” affliction.
Not only does this take a toll on my family, but it scares the hell out of me, because it’s a glimpse into what I myself may very well end up going through later on in my life. This is a genetic condition, and although there’s no genome series mapped out that I can be tested for at this point, all indications point to my IBS materializing into Chron’s disease one day. I already experience extreme distress after eating certain foods, and on days when I’m really stressed out, I fear straying too far from my own bathroom. I have undergone part of the barrage of unpleasant tests, and much to the disappointment of my GI, refuse to take any more of them until I’m ill enough to merit it. There’s nothing that can be done if I do have the disease, so why bother torturing myself. I’ve already been tested for its more common cousins, and do not have any of those.
All I can do is hope and wait. Drink water. Eat Fibre. Exercise regularly. Do what I can to keep my body’s natural defenses up so that I stay as healthy as possible for as long as possible to stave off the demons. And pray for my mom.