When I get stressed, I get sick. But not sick as in a cold or anything like that. Sick as in my gastric issue flares up.
I’ve always had really bad gastric. It’s kind of genetic I suppose. I’ve always been unable to go hungry for very long. I deal with hunger extremely badly.
Two years ago, it was found that I had about 15 ulcers in my stomach and intestines. I went through hell after that was found out. I was hospitalised twice, made to take a crap load of medication and I even was forced to be on a solely milk diet for 4 weeks when they found out that my intestines had narrowed (That quite possibly was the worst 4 weeks of my entire life). I was in the hospital pretty much every week. I was getting my blood drawn every week. I had countless numbers of tests done on me.
I was eventually diagnosed with Chronic Gastritis and Crohn’s Disease. Crohn’s is an IBD and it is incurable.
It took me nearly a year to go into remission and ever since then, I have thankfully not relapsed.
In fact, just this year, for the first time in two years, my doctor told me that my blood levels were back to normal. It was quite the achievement in my opinion.
In fact, I often forget that I carry this on my hospital records. I remember once last year I had to go to the hospital because for a long time, my spine was hurting when I sat down (It turned out to be nothing but sore tissues or something). The doctor told me that Chron’s gives people joint aches and I felt strange hearing that. I never really felt like “Oh. I have a disease’. I guess it has a lot to do with the fact that I’ve not relapsed. I feel like a person with a disease usually is suffering so I guess I’ve always felt like I didn’t belong in that category.
Ever since I got better, I’ve found that I have to be very careful. I needed to make sure that I ate regularly. I had to manage my stress levels. I had to watch what I ate (after that whole ordeal, I found that my body suddenly could not handle Char Siew).
I could manage the food thing. No problem. But stress is inevitable. I’m the kind of person who likes to take control of situations. Which is why I insist on being group leader as far as possible. I always feel the need to be in charge and I put a lot of pressure on myself because of that. As such, especially during times like this (hell week), I find that I’m in constant pain. And usually this gastric pain goes unnoticed by everyone but my mom who can take one look at me and know if I’m in pain or not.
I react to stress as well as I do to hunger. My body goes haywire. Currently I feel like I’m running on the last bit of fuel I have left. I find myself retreating more and more because I’m exhausted and I need all this to be over.
I guess I’m posting this not to gain sympathy but to simply say that it’s hard being in pain and sometimes we ignore what we can’t see but it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.
Till then, I’ll just keep taking painkillers and try to survive the last 3 (super tough) weeks of semester.