This is a question I get asked a lot. So I may as well answer it. Yes, I'm slowly getting better. But (there is always a but)... I'm not out of the woods yet and far from it. The drugs are working but I'm also tapering off the drugs so there is lots of risk and unknown with what will happen next.
Am I in a remission? I honestly don't know. I'm still eating a low residue diet but I'm adding in some new foods here and there to test things out. Do I feel better? Well, a lot of the terrible ulcerative colitis flare symptoms have subsided but I still get tired very easily and I would like to sleep more (thank you prednisone).
With all this though - I'm good. I'm much better than I was three weeks ago or even six weeks ago. There are no answers with this disease - really just always questions and a bit of doubt and concern floating around in the back of my brain - worrying that things could go terribly wrong again.
But this is not holding me back. I'm working slowly at rebuilding my energy and some fitness. I'm able to cycle to and from work now (22 km each way) - I'm slower than I was but I honestly don't care. I'm rebuilding my core and overall strength with an at-home yoga practice and some push-ups. I'm trying really hard to listen to my body and to let it rest.
I learned last week that there is a fine line between pushing and doing too much. By Friday my body had had enough. I spent the weekend "resting" so I could be sure to have the energy to go out with my friend Valerie on Saturday night to the Ottawa Folk Festival and then on Sunday I rested so I could be sure to have a good night out with Marc and our friend Ken. In the past I would I have tried to squeeze in a bike ride or a yoga work-out -but instead, I slept, I read, and I let my body do its thing.
This week has been going fairly well. I did make a stupid mistake last night - I wasn't feeling that hungry so I had a bowl of puffed rice cereal for supper. Pretty dumb because today my legs were completely empty during my cycle into the office. Yes, sometimes I have to learn things the hard way...
Really, that is about it. I'm not doing much these days. Working. Bike to and from work. Yoga. Reading. Chilling out. I'm looking forward to being 100 per cent healthy so I can get out and enjoy the winter - cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, skating on the canal - I want to do it.
I'm better - getting there. There are lots of pieces to this healing puzzle. Physical. Mental. Spiritual. Slowly but surely I'll get to the point when I can say "Yes - I'm Better" - in fact I just might shout this from the tallest building I can find when I know I'm there.