Tuesday, September 22, 2009

TMI- you have been WARNED

Ah my rapt audience, I know you're dying to know what is going on in the life of HEATHER. Me. Moi. (Can't you just hear Miss Piggy saying that?) Somewhere in here there is a chunk of life that is more than most of you will want to know. You have been warned and you will be warned again.

THE SUN CAME OUT TODAY. This is a big event, don't you go giving me crazy eyes. It has rained every day since last Monday. Some days it's been rain-all-day rain. On others it has been gloomy and overcast passive-aggressive rain. Either way I am sick to death of it. It is September! We still have a few more 90 degree days to crank out here. But the leaves are just beginning to turn anyway. Poor confused trees.

Oh, and while I'm on the subject of plants, and before I completely gross you out (that's warning #2), check out the little succulents garden I threw together this weekend!
I got these at Home Depot, and none of them were labeled, so it's all just a big fat mystery as to what will happen. Will there be flowers? Will they get enough sun here by my computer? (Not likely in THIS weather.) Will I manage to over-water and therefore kill them? Ohhhhhh probably. I am not good at plants. But these seem like something even I can handle, and I have always loved the crazy geometric patterns and shapes that succulents have. That and the leaves are shiiiiiiny. OOOoooOOOOHHHHHhhhh.
Anyway, back to the original story of bodily functions (WARNING #3!). Before the sun came out I decided to get out of the office to eat my lunch. It was a very exciting lunch of tuna fish and whole grain chip/cracker things. Okay, it wasn't that exciting, but it was cheap. Payday is on Thursday and I'm not buying any foods until then. Anyway, I was driving along to nowhere in particular when I realized that the big Catholic cemetery was coming up. So I turned in there, hung out in my car, enjoyed the rain and the nice view of downtown Nashville. And then... then I realized I had to go to the bathroom like, pronto. (THIS IS THE BAD PART. I GUESS NOT THAT BAD BUT... YOU KNOW.)

Ahhhh IBS. You lord it over me at the most inconvenient, inexplicable times. For the past year things have been good for the most part. Sometimes I eat something too greasy, sometimes I eat lettuce, and sometimes I get so stressed out that my body rebels in the worst way. But really things have been okay. Until today when I'm sitting in the middle of the graveyard and this urge so strong washes over me that all I can think about is WHERE TO FIND. A. BATHROOM. RIGHT. NOW!
I start driving. Gotta go gotta go gotta go. I count the lights between me and the nearest bathroom at a grocery store. Gotta go gotta go gotta go. 5. Just five traffic lights and I'll be there. 4... just four more. Finally, I'm there. I fly into a parking space and (best I can) run into the store. Only to find the sign in front of the restrooms: "Please excuse our dust -we are remodeling for your convenience!" I wish I was making this up. My intestines do a kamikaze death scream. Ohhhhhh this hurts so much! I get back in my car. I drive the five minutes more back to work. I run into the 1st floor bathroom (mercifully empty). And proceed to lose something like 15 lbs. (I bet you thought I was going to leave a present in the cemetery, didn't you???? I am NOT THAT GIRL!)

To say it is hard to live with the unpredictability and pain of IBS is an understatement. There are days when all I can do is drink ginger tea and eat white bread toast, if I eat at all. There are days when I am fine. The only trigger foods I've really found are coffee, milk, sometimes alcohol, and sometimes eggs if they are all I eat. The best things I've found to sooth the raging beast are peppermint oil capsules, ginger tea, and heat therapy. I will sit with the hottest cheapest heating pad (and in my experience, the cheaper ones are the only ones to heat up enough) I can find for hours. The drugs from the doctor (Bentyl for cramping, and Lomotil for diarrhea) leave me spacey and unable to function. One good IBS attack can leave me feeling sleepy and physically beat, and I don't need medication on top of that.

No one really knows why people experience IBS. Some think that those with IBS have overly sensitive intestinal tracts (scroll to the graphs about halfway down the page- this is the most visually informative stuff I've ever seen about IBS), and this makes sense to me. In one person a little gas or indigestion is not a big deal, but for me it is very painful and I feel like an alien is going to pop out of me. Some can handle food with a high insoluble fiber content like nothing is different, for me it feels like all of those little bits of fiber are trying to sandblast holes into me. I have never actually passed out from IBS, the pain hasn't made me vomit (although really not much DOES make me vomit, I'm just not a vomit girl). The more I stay away from coffee the better off I am. It's all a matter of discipline and research. If you have IBS and you need some help, the very best website I can recommend is helpforibs.com. And no, I'm not that Heather either!

Okay, so now I feel like I owe you something really nice since I put you through all of that and you're still reading! Here's a pretty picture of a ring I got this weekend. It is the only thing I bought from 2 shopping trips with 2 different sets of people. It was a rip-roaring $7.49! I think the budget thing is really starting to get through to my brain!Tonight I'm going to make something healthy because I'll be watching that cry-fest known as The Biggest Loser. I get really addicted it every year. Manipulative bastards.

A thought: I keep getting fliers in my mail from the Scientologists. Can I tell you how tempted I am to go to one of their open houses? Every single one says "Open House This Sunday!" Of course, there is no date. Soooo tempting. Soooo not going to do that. Watching the video of Tom Cruise ramble on and on is so creepy I'll pass.

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