I’m Back… Minus an Organ and a Half!

I don’t really know how to quickly recap the last 6 months. It has been slow, sore and miserable. Between Russell and I there has been roughly 1 MRI scan, 1 CT scan, 1 (failed)Colonoscopy, 1 Flexible Cystoscopy, 1 cancelled surgery, 2 Surgeries, countless blood tests, urine samples, a couple dozen X-rays and weekly physio appointments but here we both are… out of the tunnel, still together and very grateful for the NHS.

surgery1

When we weren’t at hospital appointments – shout out to Ninewells and Forth Valley Royal Hospital – I was sat on the toilet, usually in tears, going through loo roll like we were made of money. It was not a fun time. In all honesty I had been feeling like shit (I am not one for swearing but there is no other word to describe it – sorry mum!) way before I made it known. I had been running on 30% for as long as I can remember but would put a smile on my face, go to work and grin through the pain. Yes, I am stubborn.

Now as the title suggests, some of me was surgically removed. Me… who is petrified of needles and blood had to get surgery. FANTASTIC. It was sprung on me last minute though so never had time to end up in panic. The docs went from surgery to no surgery, to radio silence to HELLO COME IN FOR SURGERY NEXT WEEK. Ah.

It turns out I never had just one fistula. I had two (1x bowel to bladder & 1 x bowel to bowel), along with a stricture and abscess on my bladder.

I had every right to be in tears all along.

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Anyway, it is good news – my amazing surgeon, Mr Jabber, removed most of my large intestine, a wee bit of my small intestine and removed the abscess all in 2 hours. I was pretty out of it for the week after but I was on less pain meds after major surgery than dealing with my Crohn’s before so I was pretty positive. All was well minus a blocked catheter that made my bladder grow to the size of the moon. That was painful – this happened every 8 hours for 3 days! I NEED to apologize to the district nurses that had to deal with me then. I was not in a good mood/way/emotionally stable. If anyone ever comes at me with a catheter again, I am running for the hills.

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And more good news…

Russell is the most positive person I know. He kept my spirits up even when dealing with his own shit (sorry again mum!) situation and second surgery. His surgery was cancelled, then rescheduled for 5 days after mine. Eeeek. Our flat resembled a pharmacy for a while; stocked with the good stuff. I wish I was as strong as him, he did it ALL with no tears and now back at work. AMAZING!!!

And to think this year wasn’t going to be about me – read this post (drama queen forEVER)!!!

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I promise I will get round thanking everyone for their help eventually – sorry auntie B, I ate your ‘thank you’ macaroni pie! x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Should you be doing that?

I get asked variations of that question a lot. Can you do that? Are you allowed to do that? What would your doctor say? Will that not make you worse? Is that the best idea? …

… and my least favourite statement EVER “You are burning the candle from both ends” –  I don’t know why but it makes my skin crawl and I will throw a major eye roll in your direction.

As a 24 year old, my favourite things are socialising with coffee, cocktails, gin, food, dancing. Everything in that list I probably shouldn’t do but I do. Quite often in fact (which you will see from my previous posts.)

For someone with a few chronic illnesses I am very much about living in the moment. If I feel up to it I will do it. Some days I don’t, which is fine by me. I spend those days in my jammies, on the loo, crying. As I haven’t been blogging about those dark days recently it doesn’t mean I haven’t been having them.

Russell sees me at my worst nearly every day. From 7:30am onwards I have an endless battle on how I am going to tackle the day. I can either give into my symptoms or give myself a pep talk and leave the flat. Again, you don’t see that. You don’t see me weighing up every thing that could go wrong, will food be served, what would I eat, are toilets on route, are they going to be clean, is my stomach going to start making uncontrollable noises, will I last the whole day, would what this person think if I started crying, can I lie down anywhere…. the list goes on!

^ that is just about my commute to work.

So, when I go out out (like proper out) I like to make the most of it. I will drink an extra cocktail, indulge on extra cheesy macaroni and of course have extra vanilla in my latte because it has taken a lot of energy to get here. I deserve it!

So the point of this post is really to say NO I shouldn’t be doing that – but I’m not going to let me Crohn’s stop me… unless it is completely necessary. Now, where is my Friday cocktail?

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Diary of a UTI (drama) Queen – Part 1

5:04am: Eyes ping open… oh no no no no! Run to the bathroom, trying not to wake snoring beauty (Russell) in the other half of the bed.

5:06am: HOLY SWEAR WORD. IT IS LIKE PEEING SHARDS OF GLASS… THAT ARE ON FIRE.

5:07am: Wipe, stand up, wash hands, oh I need to pee AGAIN. Repeat cycle until I feel brave enough to get up and go grab my phone.

5:25am: Back on the loo, scrolling Facebook. The extractor fan is pretty noisy. Hope it wakes Russ up so he can suffer with me and get me a few glasses of water.

5:30am: Googled symptoms. I am apparently dying.

5:40am: Right, One last go at getting up.

5:45am: In the kitchen drinking pints of water – Flush them kidneys out.

5:59am: Toilet then bed. Repeat previous cycle for 15 minutes. Surely this counts as squats? I will look good in a bikini after all…. ha!

6:15am: Jump into bed with an aloud enough sigh to stir Russell. Tell him I am dying and I need attention.

6:16am: Russell pats my head and rolls over.

6:30am: I need to pee AGAIN.

6:31am: Think about what I would do if I won the lottery to take my mind of the radiating pain from my pee hole.

6:45am: Drift off to sleep.

7:00am: Alarm goes off – Why, its a Saturday?! NEED TO PEE. No time for snooze button.

7:02am: Is that it? A little dribble? OH COME ON.

7:05am: Well… I guess this is how I will be spending my day!

 

Little Ball of Anger and Fury

I am talking about my mood swings, not bowel movements as the title may suggest. This rage filled post is all thanks to my period. Being a woman is just wonderful, isn’t it? Queue sarcastic eye roll…

Now I am an open book so lets discuss periods and dealing with Crohn’s. They both aren’t easy and together they do NOT mix well.

My poo pattern changes, spots come out in force and lets chuck a UTI in for good measure, because my body really hates me! The biggest thing I notice when my period comes though – mood swings.

Clair 1

This week  I have been on hormonal meltdown. I have been storming about the flat like a heavy footed Hagrid, shouting my head off about the littlest thing – All while wearing my over worn house coat and unwashed frizzy hair. Yer a wizard Russell and I NEED you to order a Chinese pronto to make me feel better… But not really as I am a bloated elephant who should only be thinking about lettuce leaves, not chow mien.

And

Breathe.

My gosh – One minute I am laughing, next I am evil eyeing anyone who has the AUDACITY to ask me (usually nicely) to do something. NO.

The only time I have been super happy, was when I met my favourite author Linsey Kelk on Wednesday. My mood slowly deteriorated once I missed my train, realised the actual price of an M&S pizza (usually bought when drunk) and bought chilli crisps instead of cheese and onion – again M&S, chilli flavour go in red packets. Let me tell you, I gripped onto that pizza like I was taking the baby Jesus home to eat as I was not letting anything happen to my expensive piece of happiness – Which I did share with Russell. He deserved it after all…

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Luckily, for everyone that as the pleasure of dealing with me on a daily basis. My mood is returning to normal. My head is heading back into the clouds and I realised I can take two loopy painkillers at once instead of two. Adios period, cya in 4 weeks.

Now Russell, where are we on getting a Chinese tonight (my treat)?

Cry Baby…

I had this post to be scheduled for AM today but after my meltdown yesterday I have had to change the content… as all I did was cry last night and this post said I had made it through this round of flaring with only one shed of tears. What a lie that would of been!

I am a well known crier – I always feel better after a good sob. I cry about anything really: happy moments, sad times, angry, hangry, ill.

I cried when Sainsbury’s moved the pizza to a different aisle, I cried when Greggs had no chicken bakes, when I fell on Princess St, I balled my eyes out during Jane the Virgin, I tear up at way too many Facebook videos. I am crier and I can’t stop.

I am good at holding all the tears in, well apart from my face getting red and unable to hold a conversation as my voice comes out in squeaks! So after a lovely meal last night the pain just erupted. I kept my cool then into the car and BOOM floodgates opened. Luckily it was only a 5 minute drive home as we would of needed arm bands to stay a float with the rate the tears where coming out – drama queen or what!

Anyway, today is a new day. I am wearing trousers unbuttoned, my hair in a messy/greasy bun which surprisingly has had compliments (!!!!) and I have a tin of beans and sausages for my lunch. This is my Tinky McGee look and I am fully embracing it… Hopefully without bursting into tears when somebody final plucks up the courage to tell me my trousers are falling down!

It is ok to cry so let those tears flow if you need to! Also, bless Russell for not commenting on my ugly crying face. Do you have an ugly cry face too?

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Embracing the embarrassment…

This post might put you of Oreos for the rest of your life so here is a poo warning. You read on at your own risk…

Today I thought I would share 3 embarrassing moments involving poo and me, as I usually have some poo related incident a week. These moments will now be on the internet FOREVER.

  1. I have mentioned this before but it is too funny not to mention again – my poo sample exploding over the reception desk at my doctors. NEVER fill the sample jar up. They only need a SMALL amount. Lesson was well and truly learnt!KRAFT FOODS - Oreo
  2. Eating a packet of Oreos the day before a poo sample was due was a mistake. My poo came out black in an Oreo crust. I certainly got asked a few extra questions when handing it over. Hilda* (receptionist) and I now have a weird relationship that began over my explosive/black poo.KRAFT FOODS - Oreo
  3. Before I was diagnosed I went on a long weekend up North. The place we were staying at had a Sauna in the bathroom. Of course, my dodgy bowels played up and I had to go. It was bad… the smelliest poo, even to this day to leave me. I was so embarrassed I blamed it on the ‘mouldy’ sauna – I don’t think anyone used it again on the trip!

KRAFT FOODS - Oreo

Sometimes I ask myself why do I share my life so much, but if it gives one person struggling with IBD out there a laugh it’s worth it! I am sure we have all had an uh oh moment involving poo. I certainly have a list as long as my arm with many more coming my way.

I also have embarrassing moments involving being clumsy, drunk, old photos and not thinking before I speak.

Anyway, my point in this post is embrace your embarrassing moments – they make you great!

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Woe is me

Well haven’t my last few posts been a bit depressing eh!

I promise I am a happy wee ginger most of the time. The posts are just to give you a insight into my not so glamourous life where I spend about 95% of my time in jammies.

If I am not crying/in noticeable pain I mostly looking like the pics below. Smiling, probably drinking a gin or being sociable with coffee and cake. I push myself A LOT to not cave to the hermit life which is why I think people have been shocked by my recent posts.

Although saying that, the soppy posts have opened the flood gates for cake offerings (thanks Uncle Ian!) so I might just have to keep it real with you as long as Nutella is involved. Ha!

Now in the words of Mcfly – 

Oh, you just gotta be happy
But sometimes that’s hard
So just remember to smile, smile, smile
And that’s a good enough start

 

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smile 3
Happy St Paddy’s Day!
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Coffee, coffee, coffee – getting me through the day.
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Rhubarb gin and prosecco is the perfect combo. Trust me!

 

 

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The smallest gin cocktail but the priciest on the menu.