Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What happened next

I mentioned in my previous post that some time after my last post in 2009, I was hospitalised.

In my 20th week of pregnancy, a colonoscopy confirmed my fears. I had UC and it was severe. The gastroenterologist prescribed 4800mg Asacol a day. That was 12 pills! Everyday! Being the kind of person who loathed to take medication (even a small dose of paracetamol was not taken lightly with me), I chose to completely ignore his advice.

Now it may appear that my decision was irresponsible. But there are two things you have to consider here:

1. I was 20 weeks pregnant with my first child and was terrified that the medication would have adverse effects on my baby. Although I had the go ahead from atleast 4 medical specialists, I still worried that if any harm came to my unborn child I would forever blame myself.

2. I had no idea how bad UC could actually get.

So off I went full of hope and naivety to consult with a Homeopath. She assured me that she had treated others with the very same condition with excellent results. Words like 'gluten-free diet' and 'cured' were used.
I believed her.  I wanted to believe her.
I needed to believe her.

In the two months that followed, I religiously consumed the costly health supplements and was rigid about following the gluten free plan. Yet, the UC didn't improve. In fact, the symptoms only became worse. I would spend the major part of my day in the loo and most of the night as well. The stabbing pain would wake me up at night. Some nights I was convinced that I would pass out from the pain.

Sometime around my 30th week of pregnancy I found myself physically and emotionally depleted. It was the day before my husband and I were due to leave for our last holiday before baby's arrival. We had been planning it for months and were eagerly anticipating it.

But I found myself completely exhausted. I had not slept more than hour at a time in weeks. I could not get through a meal without running to the loo atleast once. Pain was my constant companion. When I wasn't doubled over and breathing myself through pain, I was living in the fear of it gripping me at any second.

Writing about it now causes me to tear. I realise this is why I have avoided writing about it for so long. It was the most difficult period in my life. Looking back, I realise that I unwittingly made it more difficult for myself by not being honest about what I was going through with my loved ones. Not even my husband (who has always been my best friend) was privy to how bad it really was. I glazed over the details, made light of the pain. So what ensued over the next few days caught him, as well as the rest of our family, completely off-guard.

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