I sure as heck missed all you fantabulous dudes!! I’m making the attempt to rejoin the land of the living. Ben started back at school Monday. The holidays and winter break are over, so everything should be settling down into routine. Fingers crossed!
I’ll bet you’re wondering what the heck has been going on. I know I’d be curious and concerned if one of my dudes suddenly dropped out of sight. Well, I’m going to tell you what’s been happening. Mostly it’s been health related. Beware… I plan on telling it straight out in case someone out there needs to know they aren’t alone in dealing with this stuff. If you don’t want to read all the details, just skip down to the ==> and read on from there. So, grab your cuppa and settle in. Here we go…
I’ve had an ongoing problem with IBS. Mostly it’s constipation. Part of it is the opiate medication, but a bigger part of it is one bathroom, four adults and little master of the house, King Ben. Ben does NOT like it when Grandma puts a locked door in between her and his royal self. He knocks, yells, kicks the door and tries to force the lock. I don’t know about the rest of you dudes but all that racket makes it difficult for me to do my intended business. Not only is Ben causing poopus interrupus, but younger daughter has some kind of alarm in her head that goes off every time I go to the bathroom and she’s at the door within five minutes telling me she needs the bathroom right now. So, I had a physical factor in the opiates and a much bigger psychological factor in the stress all aggravating my constipation. Yes, I was full of shit. Sometime in Spring or early Summer it got to crisis. I had severe abdominal pain and it felt like I had a rock stuck in my anus. I went to see my primary care doctor. This was NOT a pleasant exam. I had to stand and bend over the exam table while he sat on his stool and did a little exploring with his gloved fingers. Embarrassing (literally) and very uncomfortable! He told me I was impacted and that I needed to get magnesium citrate and drink two full bottles, then do an enema and if that didn’t clear it out that I’d need to go to emergency and have the doctors manually remove the impacted feces. I had zero interest in going to emergency. I got the magnesium citrate and the enema and explained to my family the situation. Let me tell you…that magnesium citrate is some brutal stuff. I had worse pain in my abdomen and it caused a very painful burning feeling as it exited. It cleared a lot but not completely. I lost control of my sphincter and messed myself many, many times. I started wearing pads. I no longer had the feeling of a rock in my anus but I still had a partial blockage somewhere further up. Meanwhile, I’m still trying to take care of all the stuff I have to do. I do the grocery shopping since older doesn’t drive and younger can’t follow a list. I still have to take care of Ben before school or on weekends while his mama sleeps since she works the overnight shift.
Basically, through Summer and into Autumn I just dealt with it. I had constant, and I mean constant abdominal pain for months. It was the gas of all the rot in my intestines. I tried the magnesium citrate, enemas, glycerine suppositories, laxatives, stool softeners, diet changes… I tried it all and it all made me feel worse and left me and my clothes and sometimes my bed covered in poop. At one point I did not have a bowel movement beyond a few rabbit pellets for five weeks. You read that right, five weeks. I quit eating because what goes in has to come out and nothing was coming out. I fasted for nine days. Completely bonkers, right?! I’m still running the errands and taking care of Ben, who generally starts his day anytime between one and five a.m., and dealing with all the regular drama of life at Casa Cuckoo during all this. I finally decided to just stop all the stuff I was doing and give my poor body a break and see if it would work itself out. Our bodies are great at getting back into working rhythm if we let them. Homeostasis was my goal. I started eating again, still drinking lots of water, used a glycerine suppository every four or five days and tried to reduce as much stress as I could.
Over this whole time period I lost about sixty pounds. I was fifteen to twenty over my usual weight range so at first it was all good. Then it was a little too much. Then it was getting scary. I’ve stopped losing and actually put seven pounds back on over the last two months. The bowels cleared one very painful day in late summer, worked regularly for about a week and started backing up again. This became a new cycle with a backup, massive clearing and a bit of regular. I still had too much stress in my life. Still only one bathroom. Ben was still Ben and younger daughter still kicked me out of the bathroom on a regular basis.
Now we’re up October or November and I’m dealing with my not perfect but definitely better bowel cycle and the holidays are coming with all their stress. Then a head cold and cough kootie enters our house. This kootie bounced around like a pinball hitting everyone. Everyone was feeling awful. Everyone was cranky. No fun.
Then in December just as we’re all finally starting to feel better, trying to rest and get ready for Christmas and Ben being out of school for winter break we get hit with a stomach kootie. Ben spent the last week of school before break at home with diarrhea. We put him pull ups again overnight because he kept pooping his bed. Then he got a rash so no more pull ups! One wonderful day sticks out in my memory. His mama was at work. Her schedule during the holidays was all kinds of wonky and she worked almost the entire time he was on break. Anyway, Ben woke me up at midnight with poop. I got him cleaned up and changed and we both got into his Mama’s bed. I hoped he’d go back to sleep. A couple hours later he wakes me out of a doze with more poop. Into the bathroom, into the tub this time cuz it’s everywhere. Get him cleaned up, get me cleaned up cuz it got on my clothes too then we head for the couch. I couldn’t deal with both poopy beds at three am. A couple hours later, more poop. Then the vomiting starts. Again to the tub. Sooooooo much laundry. Finally the Imodium is helping him and his stomach seems settled. Then younger daughter gets it. Then Ben gets it again. Then I’ve got a touch of it. Bing! Bing! Bing! We’re passing around the stomach kootie. This past Friday, it hit Ben again hard but he woke up fine Saturday. Of course, it hit me on Saturday and was so sick and exhausted I don’t remember anything from that day except the bathroom. Then Sunday I felt weak and sore but better. Definitely not constipated.
I hope all of you awesome dudes had a great holiday season and I hope that 2019 is being kind to you so far. I am very excited to get back into the swing of things and catch up with everyone. Thank you again for all your thoughts and well wishes and private messages.