The Holidays and Crohn's

Every year, my girlfriend and I fly out to Oklahoma City to visit her grandparents. We fly out during the Jewish New Year, called Rosh Hashana. Her grandparents are in their mid 90’s, but don’t let that fool you. They are young at heart. Both retired teachers, they drive and participate in many social groups that keep them lively and youthful! One of their favorite things is entertaining their guests. Traveling to the Midwestern part of the country during the holidays had me thinking about how my stomach would react to the change.

In the last few weeks, I have flown to many destinations and I’ve always left with the same result. I have left with an upset stomach.

I was hoping that this trip would be different, but that wasn’t the case.

So you've got your BBQ style food, your smoked brisket, and turkey items mixed with a Jewish flair, and that’s what I was eating for four days. The grandparents love going out to eat, and they got to pick where we went. There was no arguing with grandma! I knew that I would just have to suck it up!

The first day went really well. No major changes with my stomach. But, I soon realized that I don’t really eat red meat anymore. I don’t do well with red meat; it allows more bacteria to form in my pouch causing more urgency. I had brisket on Friday night at the dinner theatre, and I knew that I was in trouble! By the next day, which was Saturday I was having all types of issues. I was having such urgency; spasms in my backside. I guess I would have handled it better if I did not have to go to services at the Synagogue. There I was, trying to stand in the service while dealing with the spasms. It was torture. Later for lunch, I tried to steer away from the brisket, and smoked meats, but that is all they had at the “potluck.”

I was using the bathroom so much that my backside was getting irritated from the constant wiping of the toilet paper. It actually hurt to walk and or sit. Usually I stay away from any irritation cream, but this was an exception! I ended up carrying it around with me for the duration of the trip.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a wonderful time on my trip to Oklahoma. Knowing that this could be the last few years of her grandparents lives, we didn’t want to disappoint them in making them go out of their way to find eating establishments that were more suitable for both of us. I knew that the irritation and bloating would be very temporary. As I am typing this article out on the plane ride home, my stomach is starting to get back on track. I know that this week it will settle, and get back into the routine. So how do I get used to traveling with Crohn’s?

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