So this is where I should transition into talking about luck and IBD, and the pot of gold that is taking ownership of your health and finding out who your true friends are who’ll stick by you no matter what your gut may do. Meh.
It’s not that these things aren’t true (or that I don’t love writing holiday-themed columns!). It’s just that I’ve heard them so much that it’s become obnoxious even when it’s done well. There are tons of columns and books about it. I’m fantastically fortunate in some areas of my life, averagely advantaged in some, and helplessly hapless in others. Which I’m sure I have in common with many other IBD patients, but also people with no chronic disease at all. I do imagine I appreciate food more, because I can’t just pick up a meal at any ol’ roadside restaurant. And I appreciate video games more, because the distraction of playing Mario 3 for the first time in a decade is what got me through my first, very painful colonoscopy prep (that, and the promise of post-procedure pancakes).
So this is where I should talk about luck and IBD, and the pot of gold that is taking ownership of your health and finding out who your true friends are who’ll stick by you no matter what. Meh.
But I know that IBD isn’t going away any time soon; I’m in it for the long haul. Getting giddy about me getting out of the hospital, or having a clean colonoscopy, is like if UGA over-celebrated a regular-season victory over the University of Florida – don’t forget that we’re gonna have to play them again, so maybe don’t gator-chomp taunt them too hard. Maybe we even have to play them again this season, but definitely next year. And the year after that.
Thinking about IBD luck versus destiny versus faith versus what you ate for dinner last night or when you were in college can drive you crazy. So I won’t. But I will be making a rainbow-striped, pot-of-gold wreath for my door, cuddling with my (potentially Irish) mixed-breed hound, and, during my upcoming prep, chugging some shamrock-tinted sports drink and swooping up some gold coins dressed in green, as Luigi.
Author Katie McLendon is a CCFA support group facilitator in Atlanta who was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease in 2005. She is a Certified Health Education Specialist with a Master of Public Health degree from Emory University, and works as an editor for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Follow Katie on Twitter: @katiefmclendon
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