This isn’t a typical art update but to me, it’s an important part of my life journey. As mentioned in my past posts, I have a digestive motility disorder and today happens to be a very milestone day for me. It marks 5 years since I cut off all ties to my large intestine.
It came down to life or death and I just couldn’t keep it anymore. It gave up on what we had and caused me many years of agony and pain. It was sad to see it go. We had been together our whole lives. But I couldn’t hold on to something that wasn’t committed. Sometimes I look back at the photo of my large intestine and think of the better days we had. The days before my 20s when things ran much more smoothly. But I also know those days were over and it was time to move on. As you all know it was far from easy. As a matter of fact, my small intestine was not ready to let go. Went into a depression and then called for multiple strikes. Even tried to block things up a few times in protest. Confused the surgeons and went into full-on life or death riot mode. I guess it inspired my gallbladder. Because that thing decided to give me a year of temper tantrums following my surgeries. That was until my pancreas finally had enough and very painfully convinced me to put the thing out of its (and our) misery too.I will admit I will forever be haunted by my missing organs. The rest of my system reminds me every day of how much harder it has to work without them around. I just try to remind myself of how much harder it was when those slackers were in there not doing their jobs. There are good days and bad. There are missed days off from work, ER visits, panic attacks, constant diet changes, blockage scares with bouts of liquid diets and turning down social events. I guess you can say every day is a new adventure because I never know what my body is going to do and how it’s going to react.
I learned to accept that this is my life now. It’s not perfect but I remember when it was worse. One thing stays the same. Saying goodbye was the scariest decision I ever made but it had to be made. It is also one of the hardest things I have ever gone through both physically and mentally (I still get depressed sometimes and even have some PTSD like symptoms) but I am alive to tell others my story. I am also blessed to have an amazing and very patient husband who has been my rock through all of it. Family and friends who care enough to check in on me to see how I am when I am not feeling well and to make sure I am able to eat when we are able to actually get together. Co-workers who understand when I can’t make it to work but acknowledge how I never fall behind when I do. And now that I think about it, this really does go hand and hand with my art as well. Because all of you that follow this blog, support or spread the word about my art or buy my creations help give me the support to keep trucking along and doing what I love to do.
For those who still follow this because you are living with the same issues I had or a similar idiopathic digestive motility disorder don’t give up! When a doctor closes a door, open another one! I opened and closed 14 of them! Don’t allow them to tell you it’s just IBS or GERD like they did to me. You know your body better than anyone. For those contemplating a total colectomy with anastomosis surgery, I am not going to lie to you. It won’t be easy. You know because you’ve read my journey here. It’s far from easy. You may or may not have complications the way I did. You may not develop adhesions the way I have. But the one thing that is for sure is that you will need to learn to cope with the hard recovery and accept the whole new body you are given. The reward is that you get to sit on the toilet thanking your lucky stars that you can take a dump and most importantly are alive to tell everyone about it! Ha Ha!