Twelve days ago on Tuesday, July 25th, I started to have an uncomforable feeling in my abdomen. I thought it was just gas. The next day I went kayaking for a few hours. By that evening, the uncomfortable feeling moved up to the scale to qualifying as painful.
Thursday and Friday that week were miserable. I was taking some supplemental fiber and drinking some Pepto Bismol. Dana wanted me to drag my ass to the doctor, but, of course, I wasn’t quite ready for that yet.
By Saturday morning, I was.
We spent some time at an Urgicare clinic where the waiting room was hot and the pain was becoming worse. The nurse practitioner there diagnosed the problem as constipation and prescribed polyethylene glycol and suggested guzzling milk of magnesia. Which I did, then spent a lot of time becoming intimate with my toilet Saturday night and most of Sunday.
Monday morning, six days ago now, the pain was past the 10 on the pain scale. I don’t really get that pain scale. If 10 is the worst possible pain, I consider that to be on the level of torture: knee caps broken, blow torch to soles of feet, eyelids ripped off… that sort of thing. So I’m never really comfortable qualifying any pain I’m experiencing as a 10. That is, until the pain is unbearable, then the scale is entirely meaningless and I start quantifying the level as 14 or 86 or I want to die.
I got into my doctor for a 3:30 appointment, by 7:00 I visited the hospital, had a CT Scan, and a prescription for a couple different antibiotics.
Whew! Diverticulitis. That is some seriously unfun stuff.
By Tuesday morning the pain had become debilitating. My doctor prescribed some Tylenol and codeine. Oh, and a clear liquid diet.
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday last week were terrible. Intense, eye-tearing pain. No food. pondering if there were any glaring omissions in my estate planning.
Finally Friday, the searing pain like someone repeatedly stabbing my lower left abdomen with a triple bladed knife subsided to just feeling like I was being punched over and over again. Bliss. I also had an appetite enough for some beef broth and jello. My God! Food never tasted so good… and that was still technically the stuff of a clear liquid diet.
Yesterday, Saturday, I was feeling functional again. Although the lack of calories was apparent. And about 4am, I had such an intense craving for french toast, I drove out to Meijer to get a frozen box and ended up walking out with a cheesecake danish to boot.
Here I am on Sunday afternoon. I’m back to that uncomfortable feeling like I’ve got a bit of gas. I’ll take it over what I just went through.
Between keto and diverticulitis I’ve learned more about food, digestion, and eating in the past two months than I ever have. I’ve lost about 20 pounds since the middle of June. Granted, I expect some of that to come back on now that I’m not terrified about what eating will do to my lower body, but still. I’ve got another 30 pounds to shed to reach my goal weight.
One another note: After finding myself sucked into trivial videos of Epic Fails, recipes, and who knows what else, I unfollowed a majority of people from my friends’ list. I’ve kept it to family, friends that I talk to, and friends that I think about talking to, with a couple of others that tend to post some stuff I actually find interesting not distracting numbness.
Something else occurred during the past couple of weeks’ ordeal: I felt boredom. Boredom, to me, is the inability to entertain oneself — even if that means popping on a television show that one finds entertaining. I have enough things that trigger despair that boredom has no place in my life. And, given my circumstances, something I have great concern about succumbing to. I’m sure that feeling was evoked my debilitating pain and a clear liquid diet with an extreme calorie deficiency, but it was significant enough to cause many of my recent musings about the need to “reset” to be scoffed at.