A Trunk of Life

 Recovery of this latest Crohn’s Disease Colitis flare (2015) took much longer than anticipated, and almost cost me my life. Again. The enemy chooses carefully whom he chases, however, my God at times, lets the enemy chase, but then He sometimes rescues us from the pursuit.

This flare, this latest trial, was one well rehearsed; since I knew what to expect and was familiar with what was happening to my fragile body, I set into a pattern of stubborn denial as this process caused me to waste away. Denial for me, as I now recognize, was a form of coping, and I thought that if I ignored or willed away the flare, that it would, in fact, listen to me and go away. Ha! A hard lesson learned, strong will is not always a match for a monster.

My days were filled with not being able to get out of bed other than bathroom visits or the occasional food forage. Bathing became almost impossible – I tired so easily and was required to take a nap after showering, I was that exhausted. Even then, the mere act of getting out of bed and placing one foot in front of the other was painful. I would walk by a mirror, the few times I chose to view the conclusive gaze of the person staring back was other worldly – I did not recognize my bent over, haggard form, nor did I want to. I had such a practiced ritual of dis-association, surely this mastery of self-deception would somehow convince the disease to go away.

My appetite was suppressed, partly because I knew it would do no good to eat and partly because I dreaded the after effects of eating. I knew if I ate, I was dooming myself to the soon to follow torture from being in a full blown, uncontrollable Crohn’s and Colitis flare. The thought of eating, of desiring one tiny morsel was lacking in immense magnitude; I simply did not feel like eating. The thought of self-loathing has since crossed my mind as why I let myself get so bad, however, I don’t think that was part of my equation. Why then, was the act of wasting away in front of my loved ones justified for me? The only reason I can conjure is the afore mentioned sea of denial, which knows no depths.

My bedroom was equipped with a glorious double paned window, which spread before me a large oak tree, bushes of pink azaleas and lush, green grass. This window represented life; I witnessed birds land on the branches, chirping happy songs, squirrels chasing one another round and round the dark, weathered trunks or burying acorns under their canopy. This window to the outside world allowed me to see that life does go on; people live, creatures live, the earth turns and seasons happen whether we are a part of them or not.


God will make a way when there seems to be no way. Thanks for sharing your journey in giving insights of your sickness. May others learn from this.

Thank you, Ray! He has and will continue to make a way despite the present; patience indeed is a virtue!

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