Friday, November 30, 2012

Going through the Big D

I'm not getting a divorce and I'm not going to Dallas.

If you're a member of my family, you know what it is that we refer to as "the big D". If you're not a member of this family, in short, it has to do with an upset in ones digestive tract. Starts with a "d" and ends in "iarrhea". Anyway, you get the picture.

I have IBS. This is a self diagnosis but I feel very confident in this assessment. A few years ago I started  having what I referred to as "episodes".  They seemed to be more stress triggered than caused by my diet. So, I tried to manage my stress the best I could but it turned out that even good stress was causing these horrid episodes. Like, I'd get excited about what was for dinner...boom. Seriously? My solution was to try probiotics. I'd heard some people talk about their benefits so, I gave it a whirl. First of all, it was difficult for me to spend $12 on a box of pills but I just had to try something. After a few weeks of taking them, things really calmed down and leveled out. It was a miracle! So, I kept buying them and taking them regularly and...all was well.

Being the person I am, I kinda one month forgot to buy any. Things seemed ok and I thought maybe I was healed. I was continuing to drink raw goat milk and decided that the antibodies and other amazing nutrients in it were keeping my digestive system aligned. Then, a couple months ago, the goat milk dried up and with it; my remission. Bad things started happening again. Bad bad bad things. I cannot express to you the inconvenience of such a malady. If you've been in my shoes, you know what I mean.

Well...Wednesday, I was out working in the goat pen, cleaning, doing some minor repairs etc...when I started to feel it. I questioned what in the world I could possibly be stressed about. It was a perfect day, I was doing what I love...no stress, none. But, my tummy continued to rumble and I knew what was coming. When you can feel things bursting and echoing all the way in your upper rib cage, something very unfortunate is coming your way. Luckily the goat pen is just right in my backyard so I kept on working and waited for the boom to lower. I made a trip in the tractor to dump (excuse the pun) a load of goat poop on the compost pile down the road. I promise, I am not going to be graphic but I did have to drive very fast back to the house - range D, gear 4...man.

It quickly became apparent that this was not a regular episode. It wasn't even a re-run. No, this was a special live broadcast. It was not a test of the emergency broadcast system...it was THE actual emergency that we've all been wondering about. It was horrible, hideous, deplorable and it went on for hours. Kind of like the Jerry's kids fundraiser on PBS. I kept wondering if there was a quota to meet before it would end, but even after I thought more than was humanly possible could have been donated...it just kept going.

During "comercial breaks" I would go back to work. Squatting down in the goat pen while doing repair work on the door to the shed was particularly grievous for my poor guts. I really thought that alien was going to pop out any minute and run off across the north pasture. I was actually hoping that it would. Whatever was in there needed out. I picked up my rake and dragged it across the ground, all the while saying Jesus' name and wincing in pain. For some twisted reason, pain is funny around here. I kept laughing at my state but that hurt so I went back to work.

I was drinking gatorade and taking imodium and praying. Lord, was I praying. At one point I wanted to cry. Especially when I was making dinner and poured the tomatoes into the pot of chili. The pain finally subsided before bed and the episode came to an end...and I was ever so thankful.

While I'm sure that I was the victim of some sort of food poisoning or a stomach bug, I am definitely going to get some probiotics circulating through my body ASAP. I'm going to have to wait until spring for goat milk but am looking forward to it with great anticipation.

Things like this happen for a reason. I'm sure that it will serve to make me happy to simply be, ahem, regular. It will also serve to remind me that I must be consistent with my diet and medications. And, it will help me appreciate the fact that I can work very very near the safety of my own bathroom. Because, I'm quite sure that if this had happened somewhere out in public, I would not be writing this blog today but would be dead. Dead dead dead. Dead. So, today, I'm happy to be alive :) And, happy to be alive is good.

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