A new friend inspired me to write this story, it’s been something I have debated for a long time as it is something very embarrassing for me, but here goes.
If you don’t know what BSD is, it is called Bile Salt Diarrhea and it is very similar to IBS-D in a lot of ways. BSD is generally caused when people get their gall bladders removed. Only a small percentage of patients actually suffer from BSD and I guess I am one of that percentage.
I won’t go into all the details on how the body reacts to BSD as most of it is technical, but the short story is that my body produces an excess amount of bile used for digestion and that bile does not have a chance to reabsorb into the intestines thus causing the dreaded D!
My story starts in 1997, I kept having these sharp pains in my stomach again and again and each time I went to the doctor, they simply told me it was gastritis and to stop eating spicy, greasy, fatty foods. It didn’t matter how many times I told them that I had tried that with no luck, they simply looked at me and assumed thats what I ate. Yes, I am and always have been a big girl.
Fast forward to 1999, I became pregnant for the first time, but had a miscarriage at 4 months. Three months later, I was pregnant again and this time the doctors watched me very carefully to ensure that I didn’t miscarry again.
So when I started having the pains again, my doctor decided it was time to do an ultrasound and lo and behold, I had gall stones. They were bad enough that I needed to have my gall bladder removed but since I was pregnant I had to wait until after my daughter was born.
So, on June 22, 2000, I finally had it removed and once I was healed I felt better than I had in years. Unfortunately, that did not last long. I soon started suffering from bad bouts of D, sometimes causing me to miss work. I was miserable, but was grateful that it only really hit me 4-5 times a month.
The worst part of having BSD was the public accidents, which happened quite a few times. They were embarrassing as it was hard to hide in some cases. It was particularly bad having to tell a boss the reason I needed to go home. I lost a great job because of this in 2003 but quickly picked myself up.
In 2006 I started another new job and it was the best one yet. I still miss my coworkers and the environment to this day. By the time I started there, I started having issues 2-3 times a week and started taking Imodium religiously just to be able to work and it was going good until January 2007 when I got pregnant again with my son. That’s when it all went down hill!
Don’t get me wrong, I love my son and I would go through all this again for him, but having him really caused havoc on my body. I started having issues almost daily and medication was not helping at all, so you can imagine that there were many times that I missed work.
I was finally let go at the end of April and it was really hard, but hubby and I decided right then and there that I would just be a stay at home mom. Which is a good thing because it became a daily issue and medication still didn’t always work.
That’s when the anxiety kicked in. I could actually be having a good day, rare as they were, and if I tried to leave my house to do anything at all, such as going grocery shopping, I would have a bad bout of D. Then as soon as I got back home, I was fine again.
So that is when I became a total shut in and these four walls became my prison.
There is a medication that helps BSD patients, but I have not had health insurance since right after my son was born so medication was not an option. That is until recently after we received our taxes back. I decided it was time to just bite the bullet and go to the doctor and pay out of pocket.
So that is what I did, saw the doctor, got the meds and thought “well here we go, I get to have a life again!”
I spoke too soon.
Don’t get me wrong, the meds do work as long as I dramatically change my diet. Before, I could eat anything, anything at all and I would get D, now, as long as I stay away from pretty much EVERYTHING, I am fine.
Well it has been 2 months since I changed my diet and for the most part I am D free on most days. I miss real food, like real bad, but I am working hard to NOT fall into old habits. It was especially hard at Easter with all the chocolate that I have sworn off completely but other than a few emotional breakdowns, I finally got through it and didn’t touch a single piece. For that I am very proud!
Unfortunately, the whole reason I wanted the meds was to be able to have a life, to be able to take my kids places, like the park and the zoo and for goodness sake, the MALL!
Well, it really hasn’t happened. The anxiety is still there, and no matter how good I am feeling, no matter how well the meds are working, the anxiety brings it all back to me. I honestly do not know how to get through the anxiety.
You know, my daughter has been playing the violin in the orchestra for 3 years now…..I have yet to see her play in concert…..she has been in 2 parades, but I didn’t get to see her.
The worst part of it all is that my daughter should be angry with me, she should be hurt by this, but she is so understanding and just knows that more than likely mommy can’t do this, or do that. It kills me that she just deals with it! I mean I love that she is such a caring girl and has such a big heart, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not fair to her at all and she just accepts it, it breaks my heart!
She recently did some questionnaire thing on Facebook where she had to answer 15 questions about me and when asked “If you could give me anything, what would it be?” her answer was “medication and health insurance” and when asked “If you could take me anywhere in the world, where would you take me?” her answer was to see a movie” Something so simple as a movie, that’s all she wants to do, is take me to a movie. Well and the mall of course, I mean she is a teenager now after all!
Maybe eventually I will finally get past the anxiety and I could have a life again. I am trying to take baby steps at this point, a quick trip to the gas station, or a short drive to my parents house. Maybe soon, I can finally do the grocery shopping and give poor hubby a break.
Maybe, just maybe, hubby and I could have a date night again!! We haven’t done that since my sister’s birthday October 11, 2008! I miss alone time with hubby!
So that is my story, my long and embarrassing story!