My favorite people on my favorite day at my favorite place. Life doesn't get better than September 24, 2011.

Embrace The Sweat (An "I Heart Sweat" Shirt Giveaway!)

Date: July 9, 2013 at 7:57 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 453

I’m glad I got to write two ultra-happy posts in a row, because since then things have begun to deteriorate.

Again.

The past week has been a rough one filled with many many embarrassingly frantic bathroom runs (shout-outs to the Starbucks on 96th Street, the tennis court bathrooms in Central Park, the tennis court bathrooms in Central Park twice more, the church on 90th and 5th, and Excel Hair Salon on Third Avenue!), many many tears (including some especially hysterical, can’t-breathe ones at Engineers’ Gate after a particularly frustrating run attempt, and some more in the pouring rain outside the tennis court bathrooms partway through a second failed run try), and the maddening return of that 102-degree fever and night sweats.

Hooray for the little dirt bath from the Bridle to the bathrooms. I call this "the road most traveled."

Hooray for the little dirt bath from the Bridle to the bathrooms. I call this “the road most traveled.”

Oh, and the other day, during one of my many early-morning bathroom trips, I got stuck in the bathroom. The maintenance company was thrilled with me.

I mean, did he really have to submit the report using the exact wording I so dramatically used? No. And I'd like to clarify that it was Brian that removed the doorknob. I merely banged on the door and walls repeatedly, screaming "I could die in here!!!" until Brian woke up to rescue me.

I mean, did he really have to submit the report using the exact wording I so dramatically used? No. And I’d like to clarify that it was Brian that removed the doorknob. I merely banged on the door and walls repeatedly, screaming “I could die in here!!!” until Brian woke up to rescue me.

It could have been worse: I could have been locked out of the bathroom.

I went to the doctor yesterday for my weekly iron and albumin infusions and when the P.A. came in, she simply said, “I don’t need to ask you how you feel — I know from looking at your bloodwork how you feel.”

My hemoglobin is back in that “dangerously low” area and my albumin levels aren’t coming up either.

I’m still taking the Humira weekly, but only until I can transition to the next drug my doctor wants me on, which is Stelara and which, naturally, my insurance company refuses to approve. (If I’ve learned anything throughout this ordeal, it’s that your doctor may make the best decisions for how to treat your disease, but ultimately the insurance company is the one calling the shots. Bullshit? I think so.)

A week and a half ago, feeling kind of OK and thinking things were getting better. Sweet, naive Ali, you are always wrong.

A week and a half ago, feeling kind of OK and thinking things were getting better. Sweet, naive Ali, you are always wrong.

Stelara, an injection you receive a few times a month, comes at the very reasonable cost of just $15,000 a pop without insurance coverage.

Although the doctor assured me yesterday that they’re in the process of appealing to the insurance company for a third time “using nasty words,” the doctor was very honest about the fact that I’m unlikely to get this drug. Hooray for healthcare!

In the meantime, I’ll be going into the doctor’s office twice a week for iron and albumin and I’m starting on a steroid, Uceris, that specifically targets the colon and should “help with the pain, cramping and urgency.” I’ll believe it when I see it.

It’s really, really difficult to be positive right now. I had a two-week run where I thought I was getting better and I finally felt so optimistic, and then last night was the worst night I’ve had in a month.

Hanging out at my friend's wedding in Massachusetts, thinking, "Maybe I can dance soon! I think I'm up for it!"

This photo is not from last night. This is Brian and me hanging out at my friend’s wedding in Massachusetts, and I’m there thinking, “Maybe I can dance soon! I think I’m up for it!”

I haven’t been able to run, I’ve only been back to work one day (yesterday) for a few hours, and I’m so tired of my body fighting me.

And I’ve gotta be honest, it kills me sitting in my apartment while everyone complains about running in this heat.

Oh I’m sorry the conditions aren’t perfect for your run! But were you able to run? Could you leave your apartment? Did you manage not to um, use your shorts as a bathroom?

Then stop complaining.

You’re physically able to run.

Sorry the weather is making you a little extra sweaty.

Speaking of sweaty.

My awesome friend GB made these bracelets. He's been hashtagging his workouts #SweatingForAli since I've been sick, and at first I was kind of embarrassed by it and now I'm like, dude, you are the coolest and nicest.

My awesome friend GB made these bracelets. He’s been hashtagging his workouts #SweatingForAli since I’ve been sick, and at first I was kind of embarrassed by it and now I’m like, dude, you are the coolest and nicest.

I’ve always claimed I can be perked up at least temporarily by making someone else happy.

So today seems like a good day for a giveaway, don’t you think?

My favorite people on my favorite day at my favorite place. Life doesn't get better than September 24, 2011.

My favorite people on my favorite day at my favorite place. Life doesn’t get better than September 24, 2011.

I’ve got a few I Heart Sweat shirts up for grabs!

This was the very best day with some of the very best people. Two days later, I ran my first-ever 20-miler. Ah, to have a functioning body again...

This was the very best day with some of the very best people. Two days later, I ran my first-ever 20-miler. Ah, to have a functioning body again…

Want one?

Entering, as always, is going to be wicked easy.

Just leave a comment on this post telling me the most important lesson you’ve learned in your life.

A few examples, in case you are confused or need some guidance and inspiration:

  • I learned the difference between you’re and your!
  • I learned the difference between there, their and they’re!
  • I learned that I can’t eat corn and should avoid it at all costs!
  • I learned that credit cards are not “fake money.”
  • I learned that 75% of people will, at some point in their lives, get hemorrhoids. Ask around. You’ll see.
  • I learned that no one, no matter how old you are, takes care of you like your mom. No grilled cheese sandwiches will ever compare to hers.
  • I learned that the people who love you will love you no matter what. This means you can have a grotesquely embarrassing digestive disease and they will stick around. Lucky you!
  • I learned that your health is the most important thing you have.

I’ll pick however many winners I want, because I make the rules, on Thursday, July 11, at 9 AM EST.

Good luck, and please remember…

You don’t have to run. You don’t have to train for a fall marathon. You don’t have to get out the door for a tempo run at 5 AM.

You get to do all those things.

I’ll preach all I want. Don’t take your health for granted. Appreciate every single thing you can do every day.

Happy sweating and good luck!

Comments (453)
 
Brian's all, "Psh, I've read this story SO many times. I know the bunny finds his mom in the end."

The Biggest Little Victories

Date: July 2, 2013 at 2:35 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 47

After last week, when I got to write that really fun “I see signs of improvement!” post, I’ve so badly wanted to write another one filled with enthusiasm and joy (if only because you all left me the best comments […]

 
I'm quitting marathon running and am thinking about taking up recreational walking instead.

Here It Is!

Date: June 24, 2013 at 12:29 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 136

You see the exclamation point. You know what that means. It’s happy post time! Exclamation point! I’ve had an active couple days — “active” by my sad, low new standards — but active and happy and certainly worth celebrating. A […]

 
Even the puddles are pretty.

Not The Happy Post...Yet

Date: June 18, 2013 at 11:01 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 48

After last weekend (as in June 8 — I know it’s been a while here, but you’re smart, you follow along), I was all set to jump in here and write that “I feel signs of improvement!” post we’ve all […]

 
Whenever I'm flying and I see big puffy clouds like these, I look for Care Bears in them. Anyone else? No? Damn.

Used To

Date: June 6, 2013 at 12:13 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 152

“I mean, I’m no stranger to pain,” I told the note-taking physician’s assistant with the sympathetic eyes. “I used to run marathons.” I used to run marathons. When you don’t think before you speak, you say things like that. And […]

Posted in Crohn's disease and tagged , -
 
The sunset as I left NYC. I didn't even think it was pretty. I was just like "get me the hell out of here."

"Who's Taking Care Of You?"

Date: May 27, 2013 at 11:28 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 68

You know how when you learn a new word, suddenly it pops up everywhere? It’s in the book you’re reading, it comes up in daily conversation with your bodega guy and it’s the answer to a “Jeopardy!” question. You’re newly […]

 
The herbal pills are pretty and they smell good. Now I just need them to do something.

Change In Plans

Date: May 17, 2013 at 8:06 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 75

Two years ago, on a Friday night, I ate a piece of fish and a big bowl of corn. The next morning, I woke up brutally early and made the trip out to Brooklyn to run the Brooklyn Half Marathon. […]

 
Brian brought home my favorite Molly's Cupcakes for my birthday. One bite, one trip to the bathroom...repeat, repeat, repeat.

No.

Date: May 13, 2013 at 7:37 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 63

No. I’m not better. Everyone keeps asking, “Do you feel any better?” Nope. Not really. I had fleeting moments this weekend on the couch where I’d think, “Hey hey hey now, I think I’m OK! I think I can go […]

 
Sara comes equipped with a puppy, but that's NOT the only reason we are friends.

My Birthday Wishes

Date: May 6, 2013 at 7:33 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 90

I’ve never really been on board with the whole “adult birthday” concept. It’s always felt weird to me to celebrate being, say, 28. I’m too old for my mom to bring cupcakes into my office, so what’s the point? This […]

Posted in Crohn's disease and tagged , -
 
Park Avenue tulips. I went for a teeny tiny walk on Saturday and got to see the flowers everyone has been Instagramming and #nofiltering. I'm not even on Instagram, but I know these things happen. I know everything.

I Still Believe In The Rabbits

Date: May 3, 2013 at 7:24 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 47

Wednesday was “Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit” day. I have woken up on the first day of every month since kindergarten and, while still laying in bed, I have whispered, “Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit.” It’s supposed to bring you good luck for the […]