The Physicality of IBS

Definition of physicality

: intensely physical orientation : predominance of the physical usually at the expense of the mental, spiritual, or social

How true is this of all of us who suffer with IBS! It is definitely an accurate definition of my life with IBS-D. IBS controlled my life for as long as I can remember. Coming from a highly dysfunctional and belligerent background as a child and in 35 years of marriage, I am here to tell you that stress and anxiety can potentially end your life. After a near death experience suffering a heart attack with the end of my marriage, I definitely had my eyes opened to my priorities. Waking in ICU to the scared faces of my sons shook my soul to the core and that stubborn streak I have kicked in to high gear. Now at 66, even though my life is calm, happy and fulfilled, IBS-D remains as an unfortunate companion but I refuse to let it control me.

Letting go is not giving up

Like all sufferers, there are good days and horrendous days. Anything in the middle is a rare but sweet gift. The damage to my body is done. Facing IBS head on has been my task the last 3 years as I begin my journey as a Mother-in-law and Grandmother. I have learned some very painful lessons in how to let go of difficult things in life that I can't control. To be clear, I believe letting go is not giving up. I refuse to let IBS control my "Golden Years". To be the best Mom, Grandmother, sister, aunt, and friend I can be, I have to do something that is not in my nature; I have to be good to me first and foremost. If I take care of me, I can be stronger and healthier for the other important people in my life.

Take hold of the good days

I have, with the help of my physicians, addressed and am treated for Essential Tremors, depression, high cholesterol and IBS. I fill the good days with the activities and people in my life that I cherish. On the bad days, I try to regroup and rest, most of all I try not to let IBS bring me down mentally and physically. I can almost see some of you shaking your heads in agreement even though we all know what a difficult task this life is with IBS. We can only control so much and letting go of what we can't control is paramount.

I hope I have given you food for thought and encouraged you to take care of you first: mind, body, and soul. At the risk of sounding corny, take care of today because none of us know what tomorrow will bring.

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