I have Crohn’s disease. I was diagnosed 2 years ago as an adult so I am one of the lucky ones. Most people are under 30 when diagnosed and live with it for life. There is no cure, only remission. Unfortunately, I haven’t reached remission no matter what drugs I am on or what lifestyle changes I make.
I am grateful that I don’t have to go to a job every day. I don’t know that I could do it. It is considered a disability in the US. Restaurants cannot refuse a colitis sufferer the use of their toilets. They carry a card stating that they have a disease/disability. It is not on most peoples’ radar here. Any event and the lines for the toilets, in the women’s especially, are always long. As you don’t look disabled there is no point in asking to go in front of anyone. At this stage I have not had an embarrassing accident but I think that is pure luck.
Apart from the medications and their side effects, there is the colonoscopy. I am having my third in two years tomorrow. The actual colonoscopy is no big deal in my opinion, you are asleep. The big deal is the preparation.
It starts 3 days out. First two days, you can only eat white food, BUT if you have Crohn’s, you shouldn’t eat wheat, so pasta is out and bread is out, too. On Tuesday, I had chicken and cheese and some rice. On Wednesday, some fish and chips.
On the day before the test, you can’t eat AT ALL. You can drink clear fluids only. I know that this means beer and vodka which is the only way to get through the day. Then at 4pm you start the prep. This is the fun part. You get to drink a litre of stuff that is going to make you poop like never before and then four hours later you get to drink another litre of the stuff just to be sure.
I’ll leave it to you to imagine what happens next.