Biologics, Trails and a Cue Stick

  The Year 2013 and a good while into biologics, I felt close to normal. I gained weight, was able to hold my food much longer, the pain and most other symptoms had subsided and Buzz Lightyear found a new galaxy to conquer. I fondly recall how weird it felt to have food remain in my system long enough to be absorbed – this was a remarkable feat! For the first time in such a long time, I felt full and welcomed the pressure of an extending stomach. That barren, bottomless pit of gut emptiness had been covered with fertile ground where life could once again establish. My vagus nerve had substance to send to my brain, and a good portion of brain fog burned away like the thick, cool mists of Scottish mornings around Steve & Margo’s flat. I graduated from being able to feel every single morsel of food travel down my once inflamed esophagus to swallowing, and not feeling my food painstakingly travel downward.

To top this repose, I was not afraid to have a social life and began dating a wonderful, supportive, empathetic man who taught me to play pool! He also demonstrated that there are a random few capable and strong enough to handle the ups and downs of a relationship with someone who has chronic illness. I chose not to let the illness define me and he did the same! It was refreshing to actually dine out, my only worry being the menu; it was even more refreshing to be able to look at the open road with enthusiasm and not fear. Mom and I joined a gym and I began to slowly build my strength. My body responded well to weights, leg lifts, spinning, I was regaining precious muscle mass. One way Dad encouraged this rebuilding was with meat; no one can grill meat like him. He makes pork taste like steak and he makes chicken want to fall off the bone. The Grill Master has his secret marinade to make steaks dance the flamingo upon your plate, and your taste buds signal to your GI tract of the party on its way down.

When I could drive again, I remember finding and exploring a trail with my pooch. The first few times we hiked, we walked – later she and I hit that trail running like two caged birds set free, weaving between tall pines, immense virgin hardwoods, jumping over gnarled roots partially covered in bright, green moss and splashing in the clear, cool streams! Like two smothered beings, we breathed in as much of the air as we could, lungs expanding with welcome to the woodsy, earthy, crisp, fresh air of a forest. She was responding to me responding to this innate need to be in nature and thrive. God spoils us with nature. It had been a long time since she and I had hiked; that used to be our thing, either day tripping to hike/picnic or road tripping to the beach, and dog friendly hotels via bringfido.com.  To witness the enthusiasm and sparkle once again present in her demeanor and eyes meant so much. We were on squeaky toy overdrive minus the squeaks and toys. We were a long way past her spooning me to keep me warm, and lift my spirits. Or so I thought.

4 comments

Thanks for your awesome writing. I could visualize your journey as you described your strory.
Stay strong and keep encouraging others with your great penmanship.

You’ve been extremely encouraging of me during the journey, to include sharing scripture, a steady smile, firm handshake and heart of gold.

Judy Wanamaker

I love this upbeat account of the results of successful treatment. I believe it was Nov. when you and I had our only brief encounter in St. Petersburg. I remember approaching a bench near the Vinoy where my husband was sitting and talking with this beautiful girl. We both fell in love with you in those few minutes. I am so glad we are still in touch, and you are always in our prayers.

Your account of the day we met lifted my spirits and is one I will never forget – The Lord knew what He was doing when He introduced us! I appreciate you and your husband so very much; you are truly gems.

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