Having to Eat Before a Trip

Last updated: September 2022

My week, much like IBS, is never consistent. I find myself on an alternating schedule of complete chaos or being a homebody and no in-between. As an actor commuting to NYC, I will often find myself either working on a film set or location or waiting at home, wishing I was working. The home days are the most boring and often existential. Although, they’re where I can eat whatever I want, whenever I want. I find myself allowing a slice of pizza, or bowl of spaghetti, on these days as a reward! A meal of peace on my off days. My own days are, however, another story

I start by taking Imodium

I’ve found it to be the most helpful bowel movement suppressor that I’ve come across. As a commuter, where I am constantly taking a subway or train to a film set or holding, I need to be on the go in the morning's wee (pun intended) hours. I don’t have time to let my body wake up and poop when it's 4:30 am, and I need to get moving. That being said, I have found myself as an immovable object.

I can’t swallow Imodium pills

I have never felt more like a baby than when I try to take these pills. They are SO SMALL. The smallest pill at my disposal, 100 percent of the time, gets lodged in my throat. Like clockwork. I can chug a bottle of water before and after I take those two little bad boys, but to no avail. They get lodged in my esophagus like a broken elevator. When they do so, I’ll spend the next 2 hours driving water and swallowing in hopes that it’ll pass.

This’ll have to make me pee

Just my luck, I’m sitting here trying to give myself relief, just to bring another hammer down on me all the same! So, I have to eat a granola bar every morning before I leave begrudgingly. The cardinal sin of traveling with IBS.

Eating something

It’s advice I see everywhere. Don’t eat. It’s something I’ve tried to do myself. Heck, I’m not even hungry in the morning. It takes some time for my tummy to wake up as well. But alas, I need to break my biggest IBS rule. I’ve gotta have something to get those pills down there!

Whether it’s gel pills, or solid ones, whatever. I’ll disguise my throat by chewing a granola bar, then inserting the pills in my cud. It all goes down like the preventative slurry that it is.

It’s ironic that in trying to prevent traveling anxiety, I end up giving it to me all the same. Someone with IBS knows, of course, that avoiding food before a trip is a must. It’s better to be a little hungry than have an accident on the road or train. It’s been a ...hard pill to swallow!

But if I can get my Imodium down, I’ve found that it’s okay to have a cheeky bite to start my morning. May I come to regret this? Perhaps. But I’d rather have some control in trying to feel better than going through my morning while kinda choking a little bit the whole time.

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