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Friday, December 18, 2015

Guts and Glory and Lessons Learned

At the beginning of November, my guts became hinky. Hinkier than usual. I stopped taking the Aleve and turmeric that were making my joints bearable, stopped drinking coffee and tea, and thought that giving my GI system a break would resolve whatever was making them angry. They weren't having it. 

So on Pearl Harbor Day I finally went to the ER. A pair of very nice young men took samples of all my bodily fluids and solids and asked a hundred questions. It was determined that I had an acute UTI affecting my kidneys, but that didn't explain why my guts were rejecting all but broth, soft white bread and yogurt (which had been my main diet for over a month, excepting Thanksgiving dinner, which left me crying in pain). An ultrasound and blood tests told us that my other organs were functioning as they should, so not the usual suspects of liver, gallbladder, etc. This is intestinal. They gave me scripts for Keflex and omeprazole and told me to see the gastroenterologist for further investigation, since their job was to hospitalize peep in crisis and they couldn't go further. To watch for a fever over 101 and return immediately if that happened. To rest, avoid stress, stay on the mostly-liquid diet, and not take NSAIDs or turmeric. It's known that using turmeric and NSAIDs together causes ulcers. Okay. I'd already been doing that and learning to live with the pain. So just wait for the gastro guy to determine what the hell's going on. I see him on Monday.

The Keflex course presumably did its thing. I don't know. As I told them, I can't tell kidney pain from the rest of the pain. It's all pain, all the time, everywhere. The omeprazole has calmed down the burning in my stomach and that's very good. But the intestinal pain/swelling/dammitwhatthehellwiththisshit goes on. And so does the broth-white bread-yogurt diet.

Which brings me to the super whining part of this missive. It's the holidays! I can't eat the good stuff! Waaah! I hosted friends last weekend for the tree trimming and laid out a smorgasbord of things I love- herring, meatballs, gravlax, cheeses- and couldn't have any of it. And everywhere, it's about holiday food. In media, in song, in people rushing around the Shire with bags of groceries, in my email inbox, in conversations, in my mind. Food food food. I'm not a wealthy person, so keeping the tradition of special and dear foods I love is the biggest part of holiday celebrating now. And that won't be happening this year. It's white bread, broth, and yogurt, holidays or no holidays. Oy vey iz mir.

And then I think of all those who don't know where their next meal is coming from, and am ashamed.

And those who only wish they had a home and tree this year...

And I even have a new understanding of diabetics who post sugary recipes nonstop on Fecebook. We always want what we can't or shouldn't have.

And I give myself a head lecture on being grateful, staying in the moment, and what really matters. I have family and friends, a warm home, a crazy cat, a pretty tree decorated with vigor by people who care about me.

That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown. And all by itself, that's glorious enough.
Happy Holidays. Peace, love, joy.


Elephant's Child said...

And hopes for healing along with the peace, joy and love.

Elephant's Child said...

PS: Healing sits very comfortablly with a wish for peace. Your gut deserves that peace too.

Geo. said...

Wonderful Austan, just remember, only 25 miles from my house, Lodi wines have this year been elevated to World-Class status, and their Cabernet is so full of anti-oxidants that I feel healthier just getting near a bottle of it. Put it on your Christmas list and just sit next to it if your regimen prohibits further involvement. The effect is remarkable. And I wish you the best in this and all seasons.

MoonRaven said...

So sorry to hear this. I think that you are taking a good attitude about it. If you've got family and friends, a warm home, and a pretty tree (not to mention the crazy cat), you have a lot more than many people have. I'm sorry that you're restricted to white bread, broth, and yogurt, but I'm glad that you're here with us to enjoy the holiday.

I hope you have a Happy Yule!

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

So sorry that you are feeling poorly, Laura. Your attitude, though, is wonderful, and counting your blessings is what this season is all about. To have friends that care and surround you with love makes you a very rich lady. Please keep us updated on your health issues because those of us on Bogger who have come to know you these past years, also care and always hope for the best for you.

CarrieBoo said...

Love and hugs from Bow(wow)ser. I hope the gastro guy can figure it out and get you eating more properly again and in less pain, luv. That would be a nice Christmas present.

Austan said...

I have good friends all over the place, even right here in blogdom. Happy Yule!!! <3