My IBS is Out of Hiding
It's been over a year since I wrote my last article for IrritableBowelSyndrome.net. I'm happy to be back, but also not so much. I hadn't written anything because it had been so long since I had any of the awful symptoms that IBS brings that I think I liked thinking it was just GONE. Poof...Even though I'd been through this before. I've been writing for this site and participating in this community since 2016.
Through that period, I think I have had at least 5 periods where I felt that the IBS had run its course or that I had finally come up with the right exercise and diet routine to 'cure' it. As we all know, IBS is more of a "management illness" than a "cure" illness. I don't, and most people don't, believe IBS can be cured. It's just that when you go 6 months, 8 months, or a year with no symptoms, wishful thinking is very easy to get caught up in. Let me share a little of what I've been experiencing.
My IBS was in hiding
I started having really good, IBS-free periods during the COVID lockdown. I have always attributed most of my IBS severity and symptoms to the level of stress and anxiety in my life and my mental health in general. It's interesting that IBS can actually help me see when I might need to adjust the doses of the medication I take for Bipolar disorder and general anxiety disorder. If the IBS is bad, there is a good chance my head isn't really screwed on as straight as it could be. In any case, after the lockdown, I decided to stay home for a variety of reasons, not least the benefits of being near the bathroom at all times and the comfort items that are required during flare-ups and such.
My new job and return of IBS
This worked for a while until I started a great new job. The job pays great, and it's a reputable company with good benefits. It's also very stressful, difficult, and demanding. That all said, HERE I AM. The first thing out of bed in the morning, IBS Hell, came first to escalate to monthly flares with fluctuating intensity.
At first, I started to panic. I wasn't sure how to start over again. I didn't THINK I knew what to do. So, I started at ground zero and came back to IrritableBowelSyndrome.net. I started reading the articles, looked at the diets, the forums, and all the things I learned about treating my IBS, and I began to return. I've been trying to get my diet in order. I am overweight, but I need to start exercising and walking, walking, walking. One step at a time, pun intended.
What is curious is that reading all these old articles was almost exactly like reading a journal. We forget things we knew. We misremember full-proof tactics that we swore by. Most of all, we don't realize how excruciating IBS can be when not cared for properly. Well, it is time to start caring properly. That's it for now. There's work to be done. I will keep you all updated on my new and exciting new, old journey. Thank you for listening.
Have you tried eating smaller portions to manage symptoms?