next_to_normal: Cordy making a "yuck" face; text: yuck (Cordy yuck)
I swear, when I started talking about Crohn's on this blog, I didn't intend it to be all "OMG I'M DYING" posts to gain sympathy. To be honest, part of it now is just needing to write it all down just to convince myself this is actually happening because WTF even. 

So, I last posted on... what was it, Tuesday, right. And I was having some trouble with vomit. So yeah, that continued, and worsened, and I went to the doctor on Thursday, and he sent me to the ER for an immediate abdominal/pelvis CT scan to check for any intestinal blockage. Well, "immediate" and "ER" aren't really things that go together, unless you are literally bleeding from a gunshot wound, but apparently normal radiology places don't like walk-ins demanding same-day scans at 3pm, so the ER was better than nothing? (Easy to say when you are the doctor ordering this, and not the person who has to sit in the ER for 9 hours.)

I spent most of it in an actual bed, rather than sitting in the waiting room or a hallway or something, so that's a plus. And let me say that every single person who worked there was unfailingly nice to me. But it took 9 hours just to get a CT scan, which seems a tad inefficient. While I was there, though, I also got a liter of IV fluids, since I was horribly dehydrated after several days of vomiting and diarrhea. That actually helped a lot, I think, and possibly kept me from vomiting again until I went back to my doctor on Friday morning. 

The scan showed no blockage, which: yay! but also: that means we still don't know why I'm vomiting. My doctor no longer thinks it's just a side effect of the Humira, because a.) it just got crazy worse with no corresponding increase in dosage, and b.) I was actually on a much higher dose back when I first started the drug trial (indeed, that was the entire POINT of the trial), and I wasn't vomiting then. So *shrug emoji*.

End result: I am now on a new, srs bsns anti-nausea medicine (which also apparently doubles as an anti-psychotic) and have been eating solid foods for the past two days without incident. Hopefully this means our long national nightmare is over, and I can just go back to the business of feeling shitty for the usual reasons. 
next_to_normal: (Buffy sigh)
Haven't had much to say, sadly. Health continues to be a clusterfuck. I did get anti-nausea medicine that helped for a while (until it didn't), and I went on vacation, which was fun and relaxing (except when it wasn't), and now everything is terrible.

Read more... )
next_to_normal: black kitten on white background; text: stomp. stomp. stomp. (kitty stomp)
The last couple days I've been... well. "Better" is not really accurate. The abdominal pain has been somewhat less, but the nausea is off the charts.

I feel like I am going to throw up ALL THE TIME. But I very rarely ever actually throw up, so it's just this constant state of feeling like I could at any moment? Like, you know that feeling when you're on a roller coaster and you hit the big drop and your stomach lurches? I'm basically walking around feeling like that all day.

It varies in intensity throughout the day, from "oh dear that's unpleasant" to "holy shit get the barf bucket!" but in a way, that's actually easier to deal with than the pain, because at least it is not physically debilitating. You know, as long as I just keep reminding myself that I'm probably not going to hurl, and so no matter how much it might feel like it, I can probably just keep going about my day and be (sort of, relatively) fine.

And then I threw up this morning. So much for that theory.

Mental health blather )
next_to_normal: (slayer barbie)
I was chatting with [personal profile] per_aspera_ad_astra the other day about how deciding what I want to eat is essentially a question of what shape I want my pasta to be today, because that's basically all I eat. (In case you are wondering, today: stars!) And Kelly was all like, damn I should've bought stock in pasta, except of course I don't have any particular brand loyalty in that regard.

But there are several brands which I DO have a preference for, because they make life with Crohn's bearable. (And should any of them want to talk corporate sponsorship of this blog, please email me!)

Ensure - Nutrition shakes with 26 vitamins and minerals, and pretty much the only thing standing between me and scurvy, or some other vitamin deficiency-related disease, because heaven knows when I last managed to eat a fresh fruit or vegetable. I am partial to the strawberry and butter pecan flavors. Also comes in powder form, but I prefer the ready-to-drink shakes.

Jell-O - Mmmm, jello. Gives the illusion of eating solid food while actually being neither solid nor food! Handy when I can't actually handle eating food but need to get my blood sugar up so I don't pass out.

Cottonelle Flushable Wipes - Because my bottom is delicate and cannot handle the abuse of toilet paper at the frequency with which I need to wipe my ass. I buy 'em in bulk, but I also kind of want a travel-sized pack to take with me everywhere I go, so I don't have to use public restroom toilet paper. Honestly, I may never go back to regular old toilet paper, because this is so much better. Babies got it made, yo.

Calmoseptine - This goes on my butt. It's a healing/pain relief ointment for open sores, diaper rash, and other skin irritation, with menthol for a soothing cool sensation that one Amazon review likened to sitting on a peppermint patty. :D I actually got the recommendation from some Crohn's forum I was browsing (I may have googled something to the effect of "how to make my butt stop hurting Crohn's diarrhea hemorrhoids HALP") and those people know what they are talking about. Sweet, sweet relief.
next_to_normal: (Buffy ugh)
Sorry if this ends up becoming The Crohn's Blog for a while. It's been sort of all-consuming lately. I've been feeling more depressed and anxious about it than usual for some reason. Maybe it's the duration that's getting to me? I don't think I actually feel worse than I did when I was first diagnosed - when I actually ended up in the hospital - but it seems less tolerable than it was six years ago.

What happened to the girl who would throw up in the morning and still go to work, because it was only worth a sick day if I threw up more than once? I mean, obviously that's sort of crazy, but I feel like I was a lot tougher back then and shit has just worn me down so that half the time now I don't even want to get out of bed in the morning, and I've been taking days off far more than I ever thought I would. And my boss has been unbelievably accommodating in letting me work from home, but I also feel guilty because whether I'm in the office or not, I know I'm not getting nearly as much done as I would if I weren't sick. (Then again, this job requires me to do actual work. It was a lot easier to go to the office at my old job, no matter how sick I felt, when 80% of the time I was there by myself and just watching Netflix.)

And I also just don't have a lot of optimism left. We've run through most of the major drug options without success. I can keep hopping from clinical trial to clinical trial hoping for a miracle, but that in itself is exhausting, because it means more doctor's visits and more colonoscopies, and half the time it doesn't have any effect at all.

I have two more weeks before I can switch to the weekly Humira dose. If that doesn't improve things, then after 8 more weeks I can try another study, this time for an antibiotic. I'm just... tired. Of all of it. And wondering how many more things there are to try before the only options are steroids or surgery, both of which are awful choices.

Also, GOD I MISS FOOD. I've been mostly eating pastina, soup, and Ensure, and getting kinda sick of it. This is why restrictive diets don't work, because when I am food-deprived, I crave EVERYTHING. Like, we're at the point where I hear about Pizza Hut's new hot dog stuffed crust and think, "OMG THAT SOUNDS DELICIOUS," even if it also makes me feel a little nauseous thinking about it. That's not right, y'all.

Cut for weight/body stuff )
next_to_normal: (Buffy ugh)
I am officially a member, as I had my fifth colonoscopy yesterday! And what an honor, to have achieved this at only 31, having long ago surpassed my father's piddly count of two (at 63 years of age), and closing in on my mother's more impressive six (also 63, family history of colon cancer and polyps). To be fair, though, she started at 40, so she's had 23 years to rack up that number. I did mine in six years. *drops mic*

I did the math, which is depressing. My doctor recommends having a colonoscopy every two years. They generally stop performing them once you hit 75 or so. But that's for colon cancer screening, I guess because they figure the chances of you dying of something ELSE is much higher at that point, so why torture the elderly unnecessarily? Could be there's no limit for Crohn's. So, conservative estimate, assuming I live to be 75 and don't have many more years like this one, where I had two colonoscopies in 3 months for clinical trial purposes, I'm looking at another 44 years of every two years.

That's 22 more colonoscopies. TWENTY-TWO. Conservative estimate.

That seems... unfair.

In other news, y'all know that my dad is a fairly skilled amateur home remodeler/mechanic/handyman. We always joke that he should have his own HGTV show called "Projects Without Permits," since he is not actually licensed to do any of the things he does, but that really only matters because homeowners' insurance can be sort of picky about paying for accidents resulting from unlicensed construction/electrical/plumbing work. But that's only if something goes wrong. Which it never has.

My mom, on the other hand, is very talented at many things, but home repair is not one of them (you should try her lasagna, though!). So their latest project is remodeling their master bathroom. My dad has completely retiled the floor and the shower, installed new fixtures, sink, vanity, etc. My mom's job? Paint the linen closet. The linen closet is a rather tight space, so for this job, she had a little mini paint roller with a matching mini paint tray. I am told it was adorable. I never saw it, for reasons that will soon become clear.

So at one point, my father walks into the bathroom, into what he describes as a scene from The Three Stooges: My mother is standing on a step-ladder, leaning over to reach the back corner of the closet, except that as she leans, the paint tray tilts with her, and so it is spilling paint all down the step-ladder and onto the floor. While bending down to clean up the spilled paint in the narrow space, she bumps against wet walls both in front of and behind her, and now has paint in her hair and on the back of her pants.

She resumes painting. Somehow - and neither one of them could tell you precisely how it happened - she manages to fling the mini paint roller so vigorously that the sponge part flies off the handle and directly into a hole in the wall, which my father had made in order to access the water pipes for the shower. So my mother, already covered in paint, is now sticking her entire arm into this hole in the wall in an effort to retrieve the paint roller.

Dad: "You're going to get stuck."

The paint roller is never recovered.

Later: My parents have come to visit for my colonoscopy, and my mother has decided that I need plants on my balcony. She loves flowers, and rather enjoys gardening, so I let her do her thing, even though there is a 90% chance I will kill them within a week. My father and I are watching with bemusement as my mother sits out on the balcony, digging around in a flower pot with a kitchen spoon, because $11 was too much to pay for a shovel at Home Depot, and of course I don't have one. Gardening is too dirty. Which I say, out loud, and my mother mocks me for it.

And then she accidentally flings dirt out of the pot and all over her shoes. Me: "I rest my case."

When she's finished her planting - and her side of the balcony is smeared with mud - she realizes she can't come in the house without taking off her shoes because she'll track dirt in, but she can't untie her shoes until she's washed her hands because her hands are caked with mud. Me: "Would you like some wet wipes?" Mom: "Shut up. And yes."

Once she's got most of the dirt off her hands, she realizes she forgot to replace the garden flag in one of the planters. The garden flagpole is tethered to the balcony railing, because it gets super windy up there on the 6th floor, so sticking it back in the planter involves some maneuvering. My mother's solution is to tip the planter sideways and slide it under the flagpole's bottom prongs. Immediately, it tips too far and more dirt spills out onto the balcony. My mother looks at her hands, looks at the dirt, says, "Oh for God's sake!" and starts picking it up by the handful and tossing it back in the pot.

Dad: "What'd I tell you? Three Stooges." Me: "More wet wipes?" :D
next_to_normal: (nap)
Though it was touch and go for a while there.

Good lord, it has been over a month since I last posted anything and *mumbledy mumble* since I last responded to comments, because I am a terrible human being. Let's see... well, on the Crohn's front, the Humira worked really well for a while until it didn't, and now I am sick and kinda miserable again. We are running out of new drugs to try, though, so the best option might be to stick with the injections. The thing about Humira is that it has been on the market for years, but it is generally assumed that the FDA-approved dosage is not sufficient for a lot of people, hence why they are doing clinical trials at a higher dose like the one I just did. And I will say, when I was getting 4 injections a week, I felt a LOT better. But  after the first month, I dropped down to the approved dose of one injection every other week, which ain't doing it for me. Once the trial's over, I can maybe go up to weekly instead of every other, so hopefully that's enough? I have a few more weeks on this clinical trial and then another colonoscopy YAY

On the plus side, I have not regained the 15 pounds I lost, and I have acquired a new skill in administering subcutaneous injections? \o/

This whole trial has coincided - naturally! - with the BUSIEST TIME OF THE YEAR in work, since we had our big conference thingy last week, in which I have a WHOLE DAY that I am responsible for and it basically takes over my life for the six weeks prior. It went really well and everyone was happy and then I came home and literally slept for 18 hours. Oddly enough, prior to the conference, I'd been having some really unpleasant insomnia, possibly as a side effect of the Humira? But apparently I managed to cure that by working myself to the point that I literally could not stay awake any longer. (Or the insomnia's just not affecting me as much now that I'm on a lower dose of the drug.) Yay?

And of course, because Marvel is COMPLETELY INCONSIDERATE about scheduling their movie premieres during the WORST WEEK OF MY LIFE, I have not had the opportunity to squee over Avengers: Age of Ultron. Then again, perhaps it was for the best that I wasn't posting linkspams during the press tour, because it was a pretty epic shitshow, lol. Seriously. Joss was tired and cranky and then quit Twitter. RDJ walked out of a really uncomfortable interview. Chris Evans was noticeably drunk for the whole thing. Jeremy Renner was a douche. And poor Mark Ruffalo was publicly begging his own employers to put out some goddamned Black Widow merchandise because Disney doesn't care about girl fans.

I did get to see the movie, and I will have a long rambly post about it at some point. I was kind of hoping to see it again before I tried to gather my thoughts, since I was fairly exhausted and just wanted to squeeze it in before the conference started because I knew if I didn't, I'd totally spoil myself. But I'm not sure when I'm going again, and I have almost 2,000 words written, lol, so we'll see. 

I feel like there are a lot of TV things I should want to talk about, but it's all a bit of a blur. I sort of gave up on posting linkspams, what with being exhausted and not having any time. But I'm actually not sure I want to go back to them? Way back in yesteryear, I used to have a lot more ~thoughts and, like, wrote actual posts about actual things, and I would like to do more of that, if I can remember how to sentence the words and whatnot. The linkspamming is sort of a shortcut to say "hey things are happening with things I care about!" without having to put a lot of thought into it, whereas ideally I would maybe address fewer of those things but actually have something to say about them? I don't know. Maybe I will just disappear for another six weeks and only pop up to reassure you I am still breathing.

So, how have YOU been? What's new? What have I missed?
next_to_normal: black kitten on white background; text: stomp. stomp. stomp. (kitty stomp)
I am trying very hard not to be like, "Ugh everything sucks," but... a lot of things suck. I am still sick and everything hurts and I am going a little bit Chris Traeger. Also, my parents had to put Patches to sleep yesterday (cancer, extremely advanced, like diagnosed less than two weeks ago). She was not quite 9, and is the second cat my parents have lost in 2 years, although Lily was already sick when they brought her in, so they only had her a few months. And my aunt's cat ALSO has cancer, so I have a lot of kitty-related sads.

First and last pictures I have of Patches )

So I decided that there was no way I'd be able to keep track of a whole month's worth of interesting news, besides which anyone who's interested in it probably would have seen it already somewhere else, and like, you do not need me to link to twelve interviews about The Americans, just go to [community profile] theamericans where they have 10,000 of them.

So this is just the absolute "can't miss" stuff. For some weird, subjective value of "can't miss" because I am super-biased.

* Good lord, it seems ridiculous to link to Super Bowl things almost a month later, but Chris Evans taking a flying leap over Chris Pratt cannot go unacknowledged. My bb also shows up in this video in which everyone takes responsibility for the Patriots' deflated footballs.

* Jon Stewart announced he's leaving The Daily Show.

* Jimmy Fallon organized a Saved By the Bell reunion - in full costume and some outstanding wigs.

* Spider-Man will finally get to join the MCU, thanks to a deal between Sony and Marvel.

* Empire has a whole series of interviews about Avengers: Age of Ultron, including Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, and Joss Whedon

* Agents of SHIELD has made Adrianna Palicki a series regular. 'Bout damn time.

* Krysta Rodriguez has breast cancer, and is dealing with it in her usual awesome fashion.

* I don't usually link to John Oliver's Last Week Tonight clips, because otherwise I'd have no room for anything else. Just assume they're all brilliant and hilarious and watch accordingly. But his take on tobacco companies is too amazing not to share.

* Broadway nerds are finally getting their own con!

And a gif, because this snow ninja cat makes me happy:

next_to_normal: (Buffy ugh)
I have not been keeping up with the internets very well. I will be back to your regularly scheduled linkspams soon enough.

Good news: I went to Key West for four days. It was gloriously sunny and beautiful and I didn't even mind that I was technically there for work.

Bad news: My Crohn's clinical drug trial was less effective than I'd hoped, so I dropped out and immediately got INFINITELY WORSE. Now waiting out the 30-day washout period before I can start a new trial.

Good news: Lost 10 pounds in a week.


next_to_normal: Aaron Tveit in Graceland (Mike Warren)
I swear to God, with all the advances we have made in medicine and science and technology, how is it possible that they cannot create a colonoscopy prep solution that does not TASTE LIKE ASS?

Yep, had my colonoscopy yesterday. (Result: I still have Crohn's disease.) Today my abdomen feels sore like I did sit-ups or something, which I don't think is normal. The doctor did say that one section was so narrowed due to inflammation that he couldn't even get past it because he didn't want to rip up my intestinal wall with the scope. AWESOME.

It's weird, though, because it's not the usual sharp pain or cramps from the Crohn's, it legit feels like a muscle type ache, which... I don't generally think of a colonoscopy as an ab workout. But maybe? I didn't get that from the last two colonoscopies, even the one that hurt like a bitch while it was happening, and my mother - who is basically a colonoscopy expert after six - says she's never heard of that.

Also, it's hazy, but I'm pretty sure that when I woke up afterward, I asked the nurse for more anesthesia. \o/ MOAR DRUGS PLZ. I CAN HAZ NAPTIEM?

Anyway, linkspam:

* Here's the teaser for season 4 of Homeland. I admit, I am curious how/to what extent the show will reinvent itself post-Brody, and whether they'll take the opportunity to fix the things that have been... less than good in the last couple seasons. I doubt it, but I'm curious.

* Doctor Who also now has a full trailer featuring Peter Capaldi.

* Update on one of Aaron Tveit's movie projects - he is playing a character named "Johnny Manicotti." Bless.

* First Community, now Enlisted might be coming back, too? Don't toy with me, Yahoo.

* Zachary Levi talks about this year's Nerd HQ at Comic-Con.

* I don't understand why anyone would want Karen Gillan to not be Scottish.

* Don't expect the Emmy category shenanigans to change any time soon.

* Christopher Walken will be playing Captain Hook in NBC's live broadcast of Peter Pan. Alas, Kristen Bell will not be playing Peter.
next_to_normal: Jesse Pinkman pointing; text: Yeah, science! (yeah science)
So I haven't talked about my Crohn's lately, although there hasn't been much exciting happening. The treatment I was on (Remicade) has slowly stopped working as my body has grown resistant to it over the last couple years, which means (1) return of the gross symptoms and (2) we have to look for an alternative treatment. Yesterday, I went to see my doctor, who recommended that I join a clinical drug trial that he is currently working on.

The trial involves an infusion of stem cells, which somehow identify inflammation in your body - such as my inflamed intestinal tract - and heal it by, like, regenerating tissue or something. And the cells will distribute themselves to ALL active sites of inflammation, so it's not just for the Crohn's, it's also apparently being tested with heart attacks, injuries, arthritis...

And once you get the treatment, the stem cells are always in you, and they just hang out dormant until you hurt yourself (or until your immune system goes into overdrive and declares war on your digestive tract), and then they rush into action at the site of the inflammation or injury! AND THEY FIX YOU. All by themselves. Without you doing anything.

Basically, I will have super healing powers.

I mean, am I wrong? Doesn't that kind of sound like a superpower? Assuming it works, of course. It's all experimental. But, like, theoretically my body would just ~heal itself by regenerating tissue?

*scans list of side effects for "turn into enormous green rage monster"*

Nope, we're good! Sign me up!

(Also, Marvel? You know where to find me if you want me to join the Avengers.)
next_to_normal: (long day)
Been somewhat out of commission this week. My parents were here this weekend, and if it seems like that's really soon for them to visit after I just spent a whole week there over Christmas, you'd be right. But I had a colonoscopy on Monday, and so they came down so that I'd have someone to drive me home while I was loopy from the anesthesia. (Which I actually got this time. SO MUCH BETTER. Last time they gave me fucking extra strength Tylenol and I was awake the whole time and felt EVERYTHING. WHAT THE FUCK. I think that actually qualifies as cruel and unusual punishment. And the doctor was all, "You can watch on that screen if you want!" Like I'm Katie Couric or something.)

Anyway. Links:

* It's really a shame this post is in all-caps, because it's really a fascinating and insightful take on cinematography and pins down exactly what I disliked about Les Miserables but couldn't quite put into words.

* Speaking of which, there may possible be an extended director's cut version of Les Miserables? GOOD GOD HOW MUCH LONGER COULD THAT MOVIE POSSIBLY BE?

* Aaron Tveit continues to be my favorite, giving pronunciation lessons, talking about Les Miserables and his new show, Graceland, and why he's not on Twitter.

* Sarah Michelle Gellar is trying again with TV, this time on a sitcom. To be fair, I've always thought SMG's comedic talent was vastly underrated. She was great at the comic material on Buffy.

* Downton Abbey and Entourage are pretty much the same show. I can't actually speak to that, having never seen Entourage, but the criticisms of Downton are spot-on. Having just rewatched the first two eps of season 3 while my mom was here, this in particular resonated with me: "Downton Abbey is full of tension heightened by the fact that these people have nothing better to do than sit around and worry about nothing."

* Community could totes possibly get a fifth season. Yeah, I'm not holding my breath on that one.

* Jon Stewart says what we've all been thinking about the gun control debate.

* This oral history of Good Will Hunting made me all nostalgic. Remember when Matt and Ben were nobodies from Boston? LOL Matt: "Ben’s still the youngest writer to ever win an Oscar for screenwriting. I’d be the youngest if it weren’t for Ben. Fucking asshole."

next_to_normal: (valium)
My dad's working on my federal tax returns this weekend, and because I now have a mortgage, I qualify for itemized deductions! So today's assignment was to total up all my out-of-pocket medical expenses for the year...

Dad: "In order to claim the deduction, though, it has to be more than $700. Do you think you spent that much?"

Grand total? $2,114.16

And that's WITH health insurance. Pretty good insurance, too. I don't have a deductible or any caps, just co-pays. Lots and lots of co-pays.

I can't even imagine what I'd do without insurance. Well, I can, but it's not pretty.


Aug. 21st, 2011 09:25 pm
next_to_normal: (Buffy yay)
Final HGTV weekend is finished; my condo is COMPLETE. Well, except for a few minor touches, but the tile is grouted, the pictures are hung, and I bought this fabulous little stain marker that covers up all the scratches and chips in my wood furniture. Works like magic!!! I went a little crazy coloring everything I own, but all my stuff looks brand new!

Plans are coming together for housewarming party. I haven't done a Cooking with Eowyn post in aaaaages, but I will probably have a few cool recipes to post from my party menu.

I am feeling better after this weekend's BLARGH. Funny thing about vomiting up whole meals at once? My abs are sore like I did a few hundred crunches! This is a new experience, since I am used to doing this song and dance on a basically empty stomach.

In other news, it is [personal profile] gabrielleabelle's birthday! My BFF in gastro nastiness! Let us give thanks for she who brings us fabulous feminism and Buffy meta.

Here, have a kitten!

next_to_normal: (Buffy punchy)
UGH. The organization that I work for decided to switch insurance plans, undoubtedly because it's cheaper for them. They didn't give us any choice of plans, but our HR lady's all, "Our premiums have been reduced, isn't that nice for everyone!"

Well, sure, as long as you don't actually use your insurance.

Because while the premiums have been reduced, all the co-pays have gone up, and some of them have DOUBLED. But hey, as long as you don't go to the doctor, you're saving money! Isn't that NICE?

Read more... )


May. 6th, 2011 05:50 pm
next_to_normal: (whatting a what)
Hey, today is [personal profile] mcmegan's birthday! So we shall celebrate by... talking about my digestive system.

Worst segue ever... )
next_to_normal: (VM pink scarf)
Ugh. Woke up yesterday with a sharp, stabbing pain in my stomach (not to be confused with the sharp, stabbing pain in my intestines that I used to have), which didn't go away all day, so I called the doctor and made an appointment for today. And woke up feeling much better. *sigh* I hate when that happens; it makes me feel stupid. So the doctor wasn't really sure what caused it (random inexplicable pain = story of my life), but just for good measure, gave me another new pill to take (for those who are counting, that makes 14 pills a day), and we will see what happens.

I feel like I am super behind... there are a lot of things I've been meaning to talk about but haven't gotten around to. How about a couple quick and dirty reviews?

To Say Nothing of the Dog )

Nine Lives )
next_to_normal: (Andrew cooking)
What the hell, we'll go with the old name for now.

Anyway, I managed to get off my ass and do some actual cooking last weekend - I reached a point last week where I was so totally out of food that I found myself pulling out hot dogs that had been in the freezer since God knows when (I generally don't eat processed meat anymore, which means they were probably almost a year old), and I decided I'd hit rock bottom and I needed to do something before I descended into dietary madness (not to mention the gross side effects from eating things I shouldn't).

I pulled out some oldies but goodies, including the Apricot Pork Chops and Asparagus with Parmesan, and then I tried a new recipe from my Crohn's cookbook. Which seems like more of just a regular cookbook, but with a consciousness of low fat, low dairy, and low preservatives, rather than being particularly Crohn's-specific. There's a LOT of stuff in there I won't eat and a focus on things that aren't a problem for me (like dairy), but Crohn's is one of those things that affects everybody differently, so it's probably hard to write a cookbook where any single person will be able to eat every recipe. I did find the introduction helpful, since it provides a summary of what your body needs and which foods provide it (so if you can't eat certain foods, you can substitute less troublesome ones). It also explains the different foods that are likely to cause digestion problems in normal people, and therefore will probably be worse for someone with Crohn's.

Chicken Linguini with Tomato Cream Sauce )
next_to_normal: (Dawn milkshake)
It's been a while since I did a Cooking with Eowyn post. Which, since I am no longer using Eowyn as a username, I suppose needs a catchy new title now. I dunno, what do you think? Should I go with Cooking with Nex? (Though I've somewhat sanitized this version of the blog, I'm still not particularly comfortable plastering my real name all over it.) Or something else? I am open to suggestions.

The reason I haven't been posting much is because I haven't been cooking much. It's been a while since I tried a new recipe, even though I just got a new cookbook on cooking for Crohn's and colitis (it was free! I signed up for something Crohn's related and they sent it to me). I just don't have the energy this semester to do... anything, really. I don't even have motivation or patience to put up with my bullshit classes, and when I get home from work or school, I'm just completely exhausted. Except it's the kind of exhausted where my body aches, and my brain is fried, but I'm not actually sleepy. In fact, I've been having a really hard time falling asleep, which means I haven't been getting more than 4-5 hours a night. I don't function properly on less than 6; I do much better with 8. So, I don't know. I need to get excited about cooking again, otherwise I will start eating nothing but microwavable crap. I just don't know what to do to get excited about anything these days.

I do have a food-related story to talk about, I guess. My mother has this annoying habit of policing my food. When I was a teenager, it was more of a dieting issue ("Are you sure you want seconds?" or "Why don't you eat [healthy food] instead of [whatever I felt like eating at the time]?") but now that I have a *gasp* medical condition, it's all about the "bad foods." Just the other night, I told her I'd made beef with broccoli stir-fry for dinner, and she replied, horrified, "BROCCOLI? Isn't broccoli baaaaad?" To which I responded wearily, since this is not the first time we've had this conversation, "Well, yeah, but it's a green vegetable. That I like. And there aren't many of those."

Buffy fandom sidebar: I am aware of current events. Please to be noting I am talking about literal broccoli. Don't start.

Now, let's get something straight. Crohn's is not a food allergy. Nothing I eat is going to kill me. Nothing I eat is going to cause permanent damage, so there is really no reason to beat myself up over my dietary choices. Or so says my therapist, anyway. :) I'm supposed to just accept that it happened, I can't change it, and move on.

Depending on the particular food, how much of it I eat, and my general state of health, it can cause mild to moderate (now that I'm on meds, it's rarely severe anymore) discomfort, along with the usual symptoms (use your imagination, I won't gross you out). Whether or not I eat broccoli (or red meat, or strawberries, or any of the other things I like that generally cause problems) is entirely a factor of how much I want it vs. how much discomfort I am willing to put up with. These are choices I am capable of making. On my own.

(On the other hand, I was tired after class last night, I got home late, and even though I never eat fast food anymore, I went to McDonalds instead of eating actual food. Predictably, my digestive system launched a full-scale revolt. Don't tell Mom, okay?)
next_to_normal: (i heart tv)
Today is Treatment Day! Haha, I always feel kind of weirdly Dollhouse-ish about it, like Echo being all, "I enjoy my treatments!" But I actually kinda do, lol. I mean, I recline in a chair and relax while they pump drugs into me for three hours. Sure, there's some poking with needles, but I'm used to that by now, and sometimes I get to take a nap! Like today, because I don't get any sleep at night when I'm all anxiety-ified. :-P

Ugh. Then I got to work and I discovered that they changed the website we use for online advocacy, when I tried to log into the old website and it wouldn't let me log in. Apparently, this happened a month ago, and no one bothered to tell me, even though I'm the one who sends out the advocacy emails. And now our stupid IT staff won't give me an admin account for the new website because they're territorial jackasses. Motherfucking hell, would you just let me DO MY JOB?

So... yeah. There goes all my serenity from the nice, calming treatment.

Anyway, how about another TV meme? Even though I just did one, because I'm obsessive about my TV watching schedule and I'd make a whole list anyway. Snagged from [ profile] eilowyn:

Check out TV Guide's Fall TV Schedule (the list of premiere dates is also helpful), and do a night-by-night account of what you'll be watching, with Red meaning "never miss it unless immediate family is giving birth (and then I'll commandeer the TV in the hospital room)," Purple meaning "yes, I know I should be caught up already! I'm trying!" Black meaning "kinda keep up with it, may marathon or Netflix it, but otherwise meh," and Blue meaning "new show I'll be checking out if the buzz from the f-list is good."

Read more... )
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