… And What I Wish Could Still Be the Same
By Jeff Salter
This month, we’ve had some pretty deep topics here at 4F1H. On Aug. 8, I blogged on what I’ve learned about life so far. Today, our question is: What’s one significant thing you can no longer do because of strength, time or resources? Wow… heavy.
Having posted here on Hound Day since February of 2011 – today’s column is # 450 – I guess I’ve revealed quite a bit about myself. Well, today we get down to the real nitty-gritty.
When I began – on Monday – reading the posts of my Fox colleagues, my first thought was that I might focus on the general issues of aging, which have significantly affected my mobility, flexibility, and durability. Certainly, as I rapidly approach my sixty-ninth birthday, these are all waning dramatically.
But as I reflected further (yesterday, when I began drafting this), an issue even more “impactful” than my back pain, joint pain, and general age-related issues (like osteo-arthritis), is my stomach problem. This is not the venue for me to go into detail about symptoms or diagnoses, but suffice it to say that my stomach issues have prevented me from traveling (which I used to handle well), and from going to venues where there are no restrooms (or with facilities that are too limited, too primitive, or too nasty).
See? The very topic is unsavory to discuss in polite blogging.
The first question on everyone’s mind is usually, “Why don’t you see a doctor?”
Duh. I’ve seen doctors – generalists and specialists – and I’ve had ultrasounds and scopes (and tests for several things like crohn’s and celiac disease).
The next issue I often encounter is someone who also has stomach problems – whether or not they’re very similar to mine – who will swear by the particular prescription THEIR doctor has put THEM on. Well, Friend, I’m glad you’ve got your symptoms under control, but that does not necessarily mean it will work that exact miracle on me!
I’ve been battling this for nine years. Though some of these symptoms had appeared in earlier years, they were comparatively milder and much more isolated in frequency. Beginning in mid-2010, they were nearly constant.
I do NOT have crohn’s and I am NOT a celiac patient. My stomach specialist believes gluten is NOT the primary culprit… though he does state that he has many patients with similar symptoms who have improved their quality of life (and stomach symptoms) by eliminating gluten from their diets.
So I have. I have not knowingly ingested gluten since October of 2011, though occasionally I’ve eaten something I did not realize contained gluten… and have definitely suffered the consequences.
Then I encounter the folks who tell me that WHEAT – and products made from wheat – are NOT the cause of my stomach issues. And, technically, they may be correct. I’ve done a LOT of research on the matter, and I now know that America’s wheat has gradually – over a few decades – been so altered by genetic modification, other laboratory manipulation, and the poisons in herbicides… that it’s a distinctly different product than what I consumed growing up. Furthermore, I’ve learned that some places in Europe still grow and market the “original” (i.e., natural) wheat – without the poison herbicides – which supposedly does NOT have all the modifications that are likely the true culprit in many of my stomach issues… rather than wheat itself (or gluten itself).
I do everything I can to avoid consuming gluten… and thereby greatly miss eating some of my all-time favorites like REAL cinnamon rolls, donuts, brownies, cakes, pies, dinner rolls, muffins, waffles, pancakes, etc. Yeah, I know certain companies make gluten-free alternates of those using rice flour, or wallpaper paste, or some other core ingredient… but they often taste like recycled cardboard manufactured from creek sand. [In fact, last month, I had a G-F pizza which tasted precisely like that.] So, with great discipline, I’ve learned to lower my taste expectations and restrict my diet to cringe-worthy monotony.
Now, to directly answer my translation of the question posed for today: What do I wish could be the same as it once was?
My reply: MY STOMACH! I can no longer travel… and can no longer jump in my truck and go hither and thither to this event and that venue — without careful regard to where I’ll be, how long I’ll be there, what time of day it is (with respect to when I last ate something and what it was), and what facilities are readily available at that site.
And, yeah… that really STINKS.
Any particular limitations on your life that you which you could reverse?
[JLS # 450]