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How Humor Helped Me Cope (Part Two)

This is part two of a series. You can read part one here.

After about ten minutes, I found a tiny ninja staring back at me from my sketchbook. She was wearing a dark suit with a spoon strapped to her back for a weapon, and she was carrying a bar of soap (don’t ask, I’m not sure why!). Her most prominent features, however, were the strips of toilet paper tied to her head and waist and the fact that she was wearing an adult diaper.

I smirked in spite of myself.

It was the first time that I allowed myself to be amused by my horrible situation. Just weeks before, I was too embarrassed to tell even my doctor that I had my first accident on my way to work. And by accident, I mean pooping my pants. I will never forget that devastating day as long as I live. Ever since then, I wore diapers to work. I couldn’t risk it happening again.

That’s when I took my creation to the internet.

The ninja embodied my battle with ulcerative colitis (UC). She opened up a part of me that I had forced back for so many years. I started a blog and signed up for Twitter with the alias, Colitis Ninja. Then I took her to Facebook. She was now clad in her purple ninja outfit complete with the strips of toilet paper, adult diaper, and carrying Prednisone throwing stars with the same spoon strapped to her back. She was ready for battle… and so was I.

I connected with others who fought IBD.

I found people who were going through the same things that I was. I wasn’t the only one pooping my pants. I wasn’t the only one sporting the lovely moonface. They were also frustrated with their medications failing them. They, too, had horrible doctor experiences. People praised the toilet paper headband. “Perfect touch!”

I smiled. “Thank you!”

Upon connecting with others, I found that they were making all kinds of jokes about their busted intestines and bathroom habits. In this circle of people, poop wasn’t gross and disgusting. It wasn’t taboo. Poop was funny. I began learning how to appreciate the humor in my situation. I learned that there IS a time and a place for potty humor. And this was definitely it.

A month after connecting with many, many others, I learned that it was time for my colon to be removed.

Had I not connected with these people and learned to laugh, I would have gone into a deep depression, never to return. Having my colon removed was probably the most devastating time in my life. I fought so hard to keep it… but with the support system I found in my new friends, I was able to laugh about it all instead of crying. I named my stoma (Peeves) and my j-pouch (the Chamber of Secrets–complete with a gassy Basilisk!).

I know humor isn’t for everyone.

There are some people out there who refuse to and cannot laugh about their lives with IBD–which is totally ok by the way. But I truly believe that humor saved my life. Laughter keeps me going today. And that’s how humor helped me keep my sanity.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.