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Not the End of the World

My story began in 1984, when I was 34. I woke up one morning doubled over in pain. There was no question that I needed to go to the hospital. After being examined, I was admitted with a diagnosis of a uterine infection… so they said.

For three long days. My temperature rose to over 106° and the pain was extreme. Two gynecologists finally decided to do a hysterectomy. When they opened me up, they realized that my intestines had perforated, not my uterus. A general surgeon was rushed in to clean up the mess. My first near-death experience…

I spent a painful few days in ICU, on Morphine, which I later found out did not work for me. Other than mess with my head, and keep me from getting words out, it did not work on the pain. I wanted to somehow get the medical staff to understand my pain, so I shook my feet as long as I could.

My gut was stapled, and the internal pain was unbearable. A doctor finally saw my feet shaking and said, “This women is in pain!” I could hear the nurses telling him I was on a high dose of morphine. He told them it was rare, but some people react differently to medications. A change of medication started my healing process. I still deal with a form of ptsd related to the PAIN that hung in during that time.

During the first few years of living with Crohn’s (CD), I have had three anal fistulas, two hernias, painful relapses, kidney stones, and eventually had to go on disability, because I had a difficult time in my workplace, dealing with bathroom issues, and pain. I’ve had medication via IV in the hospital; Prednisone for over three years, and whatever medication the doctor thought I should try. Colonoscopies… I’ve had more than I can remember over the years. I don’t want to think about how many I was never knocked out for the first years after diagnosis. I would watch the procedure, which hurt! My joints are now a mess, and although my Crohn’s is under control, I still look for bathrooms wherever I go. I’ve accepted that this is the way it is. My modesty was lost the day I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease.

I hope my morbid little story helps someone know they are not alone. Sorry for the details, but they are the reality. CD and UC are not sexy illnesses. Our symptoms are difficult to understand, and living with these diseases can be challenging. We’re “gutsy” people… Remember that!!!

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.


  • thedancingcrohnie moderator
    9 months ago

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. Goodness, you have been through a lot. I am so sorry you had to go through such an awful experience with the Morphine not working. That sounds horrific. But the fact you made it through is really jaw-dropping. You are a warrior. I hope you are finding relief these days and doing well. Wishing you the best. Always remember you have a community here you can count on.

    Always dancing,
    Elizabeth (team member)

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