Don’t $h!t your pants! Seriously, don’t do it! Have you ever had that moment where you thought you might have? I’ve been there…a lot. Let’s talk about why.
I have Crohn’s Disease. It’s a chronic bowel disease that deals with inflammation of the digestive / gastrointestinal tract. It is mainly found in the small intestine.
Now, this may seem like a crazy disease and for the most part – it’s not. It comes in waves. The waves can be insanely deep and sometimes they barely show up. I was diagnosed in 2010 after having symptoms similar to my mom. She was diagnosed in her early 30’s so I’ve been around this disease for 20 years of my life but I never thought I would experience it. After a colonoscopy, it was confirmed that I too had the illness. I was immediately put onto a medication that had me taking eight pills a day on top of other medications that I was already taking (the total at one point was around 18 pills a day). THIS was no life for 24 year old to live. I was terrible with my medication. I never took it and when I remembered to – I didn’t take the full dosage. I was on this medication for nearly 6 years. Towards the end, I took the medication exactly how I supposed to but the bad news kept coming.
I had to go through another colonoscopy. Now, let’s visit the prep for one of these things shall we? You have to drink a very large container of liquid that they claim is supposed to taste like cherry. IT DOES NOT! Not even close. Once the gates open from the prep – look out!! My husband left the house for the entire evening one of the times. He knew that it wasn’t going to be an enjoyable night for anyone involved.
I go into the doctor’s office, get into recovery and the doctor comes to see me. She informs me that the medicine that I’ve been on has been doing absolutely nothing. My ilium (in between your colon and small intestine) was completely covered with ulcers and that’s why I’ve been having a flare up for quite some time. The only way to treat Crohn’s disease at this point is with biologics. Two of the most common medicines used are Remicade and Humira. Both are equally scary when you read the information from the company. Humira is a shot in the belly and the Remicade is a three hour IV infusion. I had a reaction to the Humira so I was put on the Remicade which has been great so far. I go for treatments every eight weeks at a local hospital for them to administer the drug.
Now, why am I going into this long story about Crohn’s Disease? Let me explain. This is a chronic disease that is essentially silent. When I have a flare up or am not feeling well – it’s not easy to explain what I’m going through. I appear to be feeling okay and there may be no visible symptoms like an actual cold but inside I’m suffering.
Luckily I have an absolutely amazing support system that understands what I’m going through but to the naked eye it appears that I’m okay. This disease and its treatments have caused me to not enjoy foods that I used to love, it has given me lots of extra pounds to carry, and it has put me into an emotional roller coaster. Every day is a fight and I’m determined to not let it control my life.
I am going to help bring awareness for the disease as it is not well known and there are still so many unknowns.
Have you ever heard of Crohn’s or know someone who has it? How do you handle it? What would you like to know more about?