Back in June, at my first recheck from my first visit to my gastroenterologist, I thought I was doing so much better than I had been--no, I WAS doing so much better than I had been that I was happy with the results. (Warning: bodily function graphics ahead). I had went from an average of 25-30 bathroom trips a day, most without any warning to 7 or 8 and a little warning. I was, at the time, very happy with that, and told my doctor I was doing great. Beleive me, when you go from having NO warning and not even making it from your office to the bathroom, which is just down the hall to knowing you know you have to go, its an improvement--let alone the fact that what you see is more blood that BM. His response" Uh....no, you're not". He told me that day he would consider my Ulcerative Colitis still flaring until I only had 2 or at the most 3 bowel movements a day, and not be diarrhea. I thought he was dreaming but we went to work on upping prednisone continuously until the 19th of November, it finally happened.
I got up that morning and went to the bathroom...normal stool. At about 8 p.m, I had my second one, still normal. It has been that way ever since and I have still been in shock. I have not been like this in over 2 years. I am loving every minute of it. The look on Dr. Peterson's face, he is too. When I told the nurse how great I was doing, she said, "You will make his weekend, you are his last patient of the day." And it DID seem to make his day. I love that he loves what he is doing enough to get really excited about the results.
I told him I was having the normal side effects of the prednisone now that I didn't have diarrhea, weight gain. He is so funny, he is probably 6 foot tall, about my age, or a couple years older and not a string bean. He had put in my last notes that I was "slightly overweight", I giggled about it for two days because as flattered as I was, facts are facts, I'm fat.
Anyway, he told me if I "wanted" to start working on the weight he would help me, so we are starting that journey. Eventhough I am supposed to write down every bite I eat and count the calories, I am not supposed to look for anything to happen for a few more weeks because of the prednisone. He took the time to explain to me why the prednisone causes people to gain wait. You know that commercial on tv about women and cortisol? Well, prednisone is a manmade form of cortisol. Healthy cotisol levels should be around 7 mgs in the human body at any one time. I am taking 40 mg every day......my body has stopped producing the cortisol because it senses the prednisone, but having the 40 mgs still causes the same effects--hunger and weight gain. I dropped to 30 mgs yesterday and will decrease 5 mg a week until I get to 10. He warned me that when I drop below 10 (which I will do at 2 1/2 mg intervals instead of 5) I will have some days I feel rough, no relapse or anything (we hope) but my body will need to start adjusting to making it's own cortisol again and it will kinda shock my system. See why I think this guy is great? He took the time to prepare me.
Any sign of going back to a flare, and I call him, otherwise, he doesn't want to do a colonoscopy because it has been so long since I have felt normal that he doesn't want to run the risk of throwing me into another flare...also most appreciated here.
So today I start yet another chapter in my life. I have kinda joked around that I couldn't lose weight because then I would be perfect----seriously, I'm JOKING!! But it does seem to be the only thing I have never been able to tackle if I tried, now I am going to try harder. Don't know what I will end up with but I never knew how much I missed something until I couldn't do it. I am ready to get back on a routine.
On a brighter note, shopped til I dropped yesterday with Mom, good times, I'm glad she was able to go with me--made the day a treat in every way.