alt=A smiling woman is surrounded by bright clouds that push the darkness away with her positive outlook.

Staying Positive: A Little Help to Get Through Bad Days

I am always trying to look on the bright side and trying to stay optimistic. As I sit here today in pain yet again, I am going to find things for which to be thankful. Sometimes this helps me feel better on the bad days. Today is a bad day, and I need to feel better.

Modern conveniences make living with IBS a little easier

With the threat of losing power a very real possibility today, I am thankful for indoor plumbing. Can you imagine living with IBS without indoor plumbing? The thought of running through every kind of weather at every hour of the day and night does not sound like much fun. Spending a great deal of time sitting in a confined space in extreme temperatures does not sound like much fun, either.

I am grateful for modern conveniences. I am extremely grateful that the use of things like catalog pages and corn cobs are not necessary for cleaning purposes. That had to be torture for anyone dealing with the things we go through. Can you imagine using such things in the midst of a full-blown flare? We take toilet paper for granted. Today, I am thankful for it.

Modern medicines are a blessing

I am also thankful for modern treatments for some of the things we endure with IBS. For instance, we do not think much of the over-the-counter treatments for hemorrhoids that are available today. I know how much help this has been for me at times, and I cannot imagine trying to deal with hemorrhoids without the various things we have now.

While medication does not work for all of us, and I am one of those it does not help, I am thankful for the ones we have and the things we overlook that help us get through during flares. Can you imagine a world without probiotics, stool softeners, and laxatives? Worse yet, can you imagine having to down castor oil to relieve a bout of IBS-C? I am so very grateful I do not have to drink that.

Modern foods are a big deal

Diet plays a big role in IBS, especially during flares. Years ago, your choices would have likely been limited to what you could grow or raise. Most vegetables cause problems for me, so I know I would have been in constant misery. For those with wheat, gluten, or lactose intolerance, it would have to have been unbearable.

Imagine a world without the specialty foods that help so many of us ease or even avoid flares. Can you imagine the misery people faced before there were options such as gluten- or dairy-free foods and beverages? Think of how miserable it would be to be stuck with only cow or goat milk. I am thankful for the many options we have available in modern times.

Thankful for the little things that are actually big things

As bad as it is having to deal with IBS flares and the consequences of flares, we have it much better than the generations before us. They had to run through sleet, snow, and pouring rain over and over again just to go to something that simply cannot be called a bathroom. Cleaning was likely torture. Many had to endure the awful taste of castor oil and intense cramping to find relief from constipation. Dietary choices were pretty much take it or leave it.

Today is a bad day, but I do not have to repeatedly trudge through snow and try to clean with a corn cob. I cringe thinking of it. I have options for my diet, and I have options for treatment. As bad as it is now, it had to have been so much worse then. I am thankful for modern things. What modern conveniences do you appreciate most?

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