Amidst the medical melancholy, amidst the one woman pity party… I bring you… the great poop debacle of 2016…
See now, one of the demoralising things about ulcerative colitis is just how much you have to be aware of, talk about, write about and quantify your poop.
It’s kind of like being a first time mum, when out of nowhere, and for no explicable reason, poop becomes your very life. Your daily activities are planned around poop. Health is measured by poop. Diet is determined by poop. Poop consumes you every living, breathing and waking thought. You never realised poop could vary so significantly and just how much those variations could reveal.
So in retrospect, I am probably quite lucky, that this illness has struck me down after my initial poop baptism of fire and the birth of my first two little terrors/treasures…
But here I am, enduring the latter stages of pregnancy three when this awful disease appears to have returned just to mock me…
Toilet hours have dramatically increased.
CSI worthy toilet bowls that beg for me to photograph them.
Extreme fatigue and loss of appetite.
Blurry spots and eye issues.
Dizziness and faint spells.
To the doctors we go.
And Poop we discuss.
And naturally, a poop sample is requested.
It alarms me just how many of these I have had to do now.. and the mind boggles to think of how many different little scientists in their fancy white lab coats ( and I hope protective mouth masks) have peered through microscopes examining the very ins and outs of my outs!
So I didn’t even flinch at this request…
new country, new system… and what is handed to me is a CLEAR poop jar… yes clear. Like see through, transparent…
No modesty, no pretending like it could just be a little pot of butter.
Not a handy little tub to hold those beads you make friendship bracelets with.
A no hiding what you’ve got there,
Here, poop into this teeny tiny little jar ( seriously, what’s with the crazy small sizes of the pathology jars over here in general) and then wave your poop in the air for the whole world to see.
March it proudly, like a diva, through the streets of town for everyone to witness its marvel! Sit it blatantly in the pathology basket on the front reception desk for all to come in and admire your masterpiece.
Clear goddamit! Clear!
But with this window display comes the inevitable… performance anxiety.
I mean, let’s be honest…
When you do a urine sample… you drink that extra glass of water before hand, just so you can high five yourself for being “hydrated” and producing a little golden pot in the right hue ( I am not the only one who does this, surely?)
So how on earth was I going to produce a clear jar worthy poop sample??
Should I eat a bucket of blueberries or blue smarties and go for the all out? Do I have to keep collecting my poops and choose the best looking one? what if they laugh at my poop and dismiss it even before the little lab coats get to harvest it??!!
Thus, with much anxiety and fear, I had to just take the plunge and fill my little window display masterpiece.
And I did in fact stroll with it in hand through town where I in turn had to stand, holding it in all its glory waiting for my turn at reception and place it in its pride of place at the front of the collection basket.
Heck, if you’re going to make me poop into a clear jar, then expect me to “own that shit”…
But here’s hoping they don’t lose my pathology sample this time…
May your performances be worthy of display, wherever and whatever you may be doing.
Always and ever.