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I Want To Know What It's Like
I want to wake up in the morning, and I want to just run.
I don’t want to spend an hour in the bathroom first.
I don’t want to plan my route based on where I can find an open public restroom at 5:30 AM.
I want to read my training plan and know I can tackle the workout because my stomach isn’t going to hold me back.
I want to know what it’s like to feel “normal.”
I’m tired of being “the girl with Crohn’s.”
I’m tired of having to clarify that “I ran 7 miles, but had to make 7 bathroom stops.”
That’s precisely what happened yesterday. The number of stops I made was equivalent to the number of miles I ran.
I knew something was off on July 4th when I went running in New Jersey with Sofia and Nicole. Yes it was hot, but I felt drastically worse than normal, and I ditched them after two miles so I could go to the bathroom.
Then, this weekend, there was that tell-tale sign that Crohn’s was here again.
(By tell-tale sign I mean blood where you never want there to be blood.)
Since then, I’ve spent far too much time in the bathroom. The first thing I did at Brian’s race Sunday was scope out the bathroom situation.
During my bike ride Monday morning I actually had to stop and carry my bike into the bathroom with me. Do you know how awkward that is to maneuver? I was certainly not graceful and I don’t understand why “real bikes” don’t have kickstands. That would’ve been really helpful at the time.
I’ve been in a constant state of discomfort for a week now — just in time to start marathon training.
It’s my third flare-up of the year: I had one in March, another in May, just in time for my best friend’s wedding…
…and now this one, which thankfully has been the calmest of the bunch because I haven’t had the night sweats. My fever did climb into the 100s yesterday, but I’m not too concerned.
I can’t complain though, and I don’t expect sympathy.
I didn’t really do anything to prevent this flare-up.
Yes, I’ve been eating pretty well (most of the time — I do my best, but I’m still a proud #fatfluential ringleader some days), and I haven’t been drinking. I’ve been exercising, but haven’t been doing any excessive or potentially body-damaging workouts (like, I don’t know, breaking wood planks with my forehead or working on my gymnastics moves).
I started taking probiotics and flax seed oil pills…yesterday.
And I haven’t gotten a new doctor yet.
I’ve done research. I’ve bookmarked bios from doctors I found online, and I’ve even made a few calls to check and see if places take my insurance. I’ve received tons of recommendations, and I’ve saved them all.
But I haven’t committed to a new doctor. I haven’t had a colonoscopy since 2009, and while I’ve gotten into juicing and other food-related things I thought would help, I haven’t stuck with any of it.
I can’t say I did much to ward off this latest flare. I keep saying I’m going to get a new doctor, but as soon as I say that, I start feeling better, so I continue putting it off. When I feel good, I don’t want to think about Crohn’s, let alone go see a doctor and talk about it and get a bunch of tests.
My parents always told me I needed to find a doctor while I was healthy, that way he/she would be there for me when I got sick.
Mom, Dad, I swear my goal in life is not to let you down. How pissed are you guys that you’re finding out about my sickness on a blog?
Would a Tyler photo make you un-mad at me, parents?
I am doing a little something, though: I’m sitting in the Remicade chair right now, getting pumped full of anti-inflammatory goodness. I’m hoping that does the trick and kicks this flare out of my system. But I know that’s only a quick fix, and I need a long-term solution. The Remicade helps temporarily, but it’s obviously not enough to keep me in remission for longer than two months at a time.
I’m not complaining. I promise. In fact, I didn’t even want to write about this little health issue because I was hoping it would come and go quickly enough that I could ignore it.
I’m trying to remain optimistic even though this disease has been completely debilitating the past few days. I hate emailing my boss and saying I’m not going to make it to the office. She’s really understanding, but I feel so weak and pathetic doing this all the time.
I went for my first marathon-training-specific run yesterday, and it was terrible. It was one of my worst runs of all time. That frustrated the heck out of me, because when I was actually running, I felt great! My paces were spot-on, and it was encouraging. Then, out of nowhere, I’d have to come to a complete, sudden stop and my face would turn bright-red (on top of the redness it already had from the sweating, of course) and I’d shuffle my way to that wonderful tennis court bathroom.
I stopped there seven times.
So as perfect as those splits were, do they even count if they were completely broken up? I don’t know.
The workout was a 1-mile warm-up, three laps of the Reservoir at marathon goal pace (8:45–8:50 is what we’re going with for now) and a 1-mile cool-down.
My total running time was 1:04.
But door-to-door, the workout took more than an hour and a half. That’s a lot of bathroom time.
Now you know what’s up. I really do have a feeling this is a mini-flare and it’s going to pass really quickly. Also, after having more flare-ups in the past year than I had in the previous five years, I think it’s time to stop being a little brat and actually get a doctor. No more excuses, right? I have pretty much done every single other task on my To-Do List — including clipping my nails and finally unpacking another moving box — except getting a doctor.
This is me, not complaining. Just acknowledging what’s up and wanting to feel normal.
Since this is the lamest post ever, here is something fantastic that my coworker sent me:
If only that were written in ALL CAPS.
So that’s the deal. Any questions?