Burger King at Midnight

OK, so I have problems. I am an alcoholic with mental illness that has IBS and stomach ulcers. Wow, did I just say that? It’s true though and I’ve worked very hard to keep all my demons on their respective leashes…with much success I should say. The hard part to changing how you live and learning to manage an illness is not in the beginning, when you are first diagnosed, but it's in the long haul, the triggers; LIFE. This is what I am constantly struggling with and now I have to juggle the IBS issue as well. It’s very hard not to substitute one bad behavior for another when you are under stress. I suppose, for me, it is important to take the middle road in all things. If I push myself constantly with an extreme regimen, I will end up cracking. So, give yourself a break and let things occur without ascribing some great meaning to every foul up, breach of protocol or poor judgement. When you push too hard, you too may end up eating Burger King at midnight.

Pain on a stick

I suppose most of us here knows what Burger King at midnight means, right? This is pain on a stick, my friends. Representative of the ultimate poor decision making for those of us who suffer with IBS. The question then becomes, WHY? Why would I do something so foolish, so irresponsible, so stupid? Well it really has nothing to do with intelligence, that’s the first thing we need to consider. I am not a stupid man…what is stupid anyway? I’m a big fan of the theory of multiple intelligences, but…I digress. So, WHY then? Because I was hungry, that’s why. I hadn’t eaten enough that day because I could feel a flare coming on. I had gas, ok? So…I ate a couple of bananas, a yogurt, a salad and that was about it. I am a 195 pound man. I WAS HUNGRY. I just moved to an apartment where the BK is about two blocks away. I WAS A VICTIM OF CIRCUMSTANCE. And I paid…boy, did I pay. Pain, man. Ever do anything like this? I bet you have in one way or another… Was it a picnic, a birthday party, a graduation, a wedding or just a boring Wednesday night when you hadn’t had enough to eat that day and needed to go grocery shopping? If you are immune from such circumstances or you simply have the willpower of some kind of God, then good on you. Congratulations…I am not that man.

Don't stop trying

Will I do it again? Maybe, maybe not. Maybe a different ‘mistake’ next time. The point I’m feebly trying to make is that this is not a mistake, stupid or something that you need feel shame about. Life happens and we happen to have to live that life with IBS. We have a different set of rules to follow. Be proud of what you have accomplished and try to learn from unfortunate ‘situations’. I mentioned that I am an alcoholic, have mental illness and suffer from IBS and stomach ulcers. Poor me. I am also sober for the better part of 13 years, in a very stable recovery from mental illness and am currently working as a mental health and addictions counselor. I am proud of this. I am also proud of the many things I HAVE done to work with my IBS and that is where I am with this disorder right now. I am at work. I have much to learn, but will continue to try. That’s really all we can do.

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