The gastro guy was not the ogre I'd feared. In fact, he was quite intelligent, quirky and efficient. And I say that because he was nice, and came to the same conclusion I did. It's diverticulitis. 10 days of antibiotics and antifungals and this infection should be done. It's a bit miserable that it comes at the holidays, but such is life. I'm just happy to know there's an end to the pain in sight.
I began the Cipro and Flagyl today. They are vile and pure chemical nastiness. I've heard stories of what they'll do to me. But the last day of them is New Year's Eve and 2016 will, with luck, be chemical-free.
Diverticulitis usually leaves diverticulosis in its wake. Not an infection, but a finger-wagging nun of an issue. Diverticula stay riled, once riled. Dietary changes should become permanent, with rare excursions into regular food. No more nuts, seeds, berries, beans, peas, corn or anything small or hard that can become stuck and start irritation that leads to infection again. Goodbye to many things I've enjoyed cooking, or eating raw. No high fiber stuff, no bits of dry herbs floating in things, just what's smooth to the system so the little easily-offended buggers don't wage war.
But there is still much that's okay. Ice cream, yogurt, any soft dairy, really. Meat, fish and poultry that's whole and cooked to softness. Veggies and fruits cooked to softness, or pureed. White bread, macaroni, white crackers, noodles, mashed potatoes. Even cheesecake (sans crust) and smooth puddings. I certainly won't starve. In fact, this may be a good way to lose the dozens of pounds I've gained over the last 15 years of gimpdom.
There is a chance it's not diverticulitis, but the only way to know that is to do the course of drugs and see what happens. If it's not gone when I see him on January 6th, further tests will be done. I'm trying to not think about that.
The good thing is that I'm a cook. This is going to stretch my skills and imagination. I can't lazily throw a handful of dry herbs into a pot anymore. Fresh herbs will have to go into a bouquet garni. No more quick stir fries, no more refried rice. No more beans on toast. I'll miss crunchiness in general. Food will have to be cooked slowly and thoroughly. But that shouldn't be a problem once I don't feel like the Wreck of the Hesperus. As a bonus, I got to give 4 shopping bags of food to my Gal Friday, who can certainly use it now that Christmas has wrung her purse dry. And there'll be more when I get into the sideboard where the dry stuff is stored.
I'm also pretty delighted that the last two encounters I've had with medico types have been good and productive. My gastro guy is a little weird and his office looks like a college dorm room, but he's bright and engaged. We even bantered a bit of Python. I can work with him. That's a rarity in my life experience.
So for now I'll just go with the flow. It's not so bad. Lasagna is still on the Christmas menu; so long as the tomato sauce has no seeds it's fine. If I couldn't have cheese I'd be much pissier about it all. :)
2 days ago