I spent most of my life thinking, and feeling, that I was lazy, slothful, and just generally a layabout. I didn’t much like feeling this way about myself, but the evidence seemed pretty strong, and as with most stories that we tell ourselves about ourselves, that evidence just kept showing up. Waking up is really hard and takes a long time, I *never* seem to get enough sleep, I generally require most of the weekend to recover from the week, and motivation and energy just seem to be harder to come by for me than they seem to be for others.
Most of my adult life has been spent trying to compensate for my laziness. I drink a *lot* of coffee, I smile more than I’m inclined to, and I spend a lot of what little motivation I have fighting through fog and lethargy.
Being of an engineering mindset, when I received my Crohn’s diagnosis, I immediately started doing my research. What should I find but that chronic fatigue is a common symptom! Was it possible that, after all these years, I wasn’t actually lazy after all? Could it be that there was an actual reason for the fact that most days feel like crushing burdens to be carried?!? This was mind blowing. It didn’t change my experience… I’m still tired all the time, but my experience of that experience (my meta-experience?) was transformed. Rather than being judgmental toward myself, rather than condemning my apparent laziness, I was able to muster a level of compassion and forgiveness for myself.
I do not tell you this to seek your sympathy. I tell you this because I want you to understand the enormity of what else I’m about to tell you.
2 days in a row now, I have commuted to work on my bicycle, completely under my own human power.
Yes, it was hard. Yes, I tried to talk myself out of it. Yes, it’s only 4 miles and mostly downhill. Yes, I still feel a little wobbly an hour later. Doesn’t matter. I did it. That’s what matters. And ya know what? I feel pretty damn proud of myself. Will I do it again tomorrow? Dunno.. ask me tomorrow. But at least I know that I’m capable of it.
Hi, your blog is very informative. I do not suffer from this disease, but I recently got involved with the CCFA Team Challenge here in San Diego. I’m running the Rock ‘n Roll Marathon in November 2015 to support Crohn’s & Colitis. I’d LOVE your assistance (and your audience) in helping me reach my fundraising goal. Please view/share my personal page. Good luck on your journey and I’ll continue to keep reading.
I have recently been diagnosed with crohn’s and just don’t know where to start. Like you as soon as I found out did a ton of research. And i’ve especially had to do research on what to eat and what not too but it really seams trial and error. I dont really know who to talk to about this and find reading blogs have been a great comfort. I can only seam to read the ones I am interested in and can connect too and well… I just wanted to say I love your blog and it has been very helpful, comforting, and reassuring in some ways.
My Cranky Gut said:
Hi Kristine! Welcome to the Crohnie world! I’m sorry you find yourself here, but we’re happy to have you!
Thank you so much for your kind words about my blog. I’ve not been so active here as in the past, but it (and I!) are still around.
I totally understand not knowing where to turn for information… we’ve all been there. One of the first places I’d look for support (based on your email address) is the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of Canada http://www.crohnsandcolitis.ca/ As for your diet, I’m sorry to say that trial and error is going to be your most reliable guide. If you don’t already, I’d strongly encourage you to keep a meticulous journal… use it to track what you eat, when you eat it, how you’re feeling, when you go poop, and what it was like (learn your Bristol numbers!). After keeping this journal for a while, you’ll start to gain some more informed insight into what foods aggravate you and what foods don’t. If you’re not feeling well, you can look back over the last few days and start to look for patterns. And keep researching, because new stuff is always being learned.
There are a few diets that purport to help with angry colons… SCD, FODMAPS, and others. Most (though not all) of them share a ‘low carb’ component. I had really good luck following SCD for a couple of years, but then it gradually stopped helping. I’m between protocols at the moment and trying to figure out what’s next.
Thanks for reading, and best of luck to you!