January 2017

This month I’ve been quietly dealing with my own version of the January blues. I don’t tend to get depressed too much this time of year, especially when I’ve been feeling so well. But I think it’s somewhat due to the fact that I’ve been feeling so well that I feel sad. Which is twisted and I’ve been struggling how to process it and whether or not I should be talking about it. Should this blog be positive things only, helping others to get through surgeries and how to live with a chronic illness? Would I be doing myself and everyone else an injustice if I neglected the ‘negative’ aspect of living with an illness like IBD? I don’t feel like I should not talk about it but I can’t find the right words sometimes. That’s been my battle this month. I’m sure it will continue.

In that vein, I’ve found out that my Crohn’s Disease has gone into remission. This is of course a good thing but that word – ‘remission’ – I don’t particularly like it. It makes it sound as if I’ve been cured when in reality there is no cure for IBD. So it’s often misleading; but when doctors and nurses who deal with IBD in their job role use it, what can we do?! This was confirmed with blood work, repeated faecal calprotein tests and a small bowel MRI scan. These all show that my inflammatory markers are low, my calprotein is very low and my scan shows no causes for concern. It seems my ostomy surgery was the best and greatest call my surgeon, medical team and my family encouraged me towards. So so grateful on a daily basis – I know that there could be a time when this isn’t the case and I sure as hell went through an awful 2016 to get to this place I am in now; I will not be taking it for granted!

I’ve also upped my blogging game this month. I’ve done some work for a new project coming out in the Summer and that has really encouraged me to communicate better, more often and with a stronger focus. I hope that is being reflected now and for the next coming months.

I’ve managed to avoid all the major bugs going around and stayed relatively well for most of January. I had a stomach bug at the beginning of the year but once that passed, I was back to my normal self. Finding out what my ‘normal self’ is, is challenging some days – things still have that element of unpredictability I’m not quite used to yet – but I’m learning every day. Things aren’t so overwhelming these days and I am feeling positive. I hope this continues and I grow more and more accepting of my ostomy and my new lifestyle.

Next month I am being reviewed by my surgeon and subsequently my consultant too; we hope to create a plan so that I can ‘flag’ problems in the future and avoid too many problems – if any! – from being without medication. More on that as that happens. I’ve also got a new haircut and colour booked in, some time away in London with a fellow ostomate and hoping for new projects to get started. BRING IT ON.

 

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