The meds make me really tired. No, that's not quite it. They make me exhausted. That's not it either. The IBS meds suck the will to live from my very marrow. Yeah, that's more accurate.
But without the meds, my digestive system, my existence, turns into a fiery abyss of acid, bloat, and night sweats.
But if I stop eating all processed foods, including sugar, baked goods, and anything including my worst allergens (wheat & soy), and eat only fresh vegetables, fruits, and small amounts of clean natural protein (fresh goat cheese, local eggs) all symptoms of IBS miraculously cease within days.
But refined carbs and cheese are my go to comfort food at night. Even after my 3-mile race walk 3 or 4 days a week, it's all I want to eat. Like a lower world shamanic initiation drumbeat, like an evolutionary imperative. Feed me cheddar, manchego, smoked gouda, mozzarella. Give me millet/flax rolls with strawberry butter. On particularly bad days, it's pizza from a local parlor, high quality, topped with fresh peppers and mushrooms and tomatoes, sausage and extra cheese, washed down with raspberry seltzer, unspeakably delicious, f*cking me ninety-eight ways to sunrise.
And even though I know that on the other side lies the path of bloat leads to flames leads to night sweats leads to meds leads to exhaustion, I eat anyway. Even though I know that just a few months of super clean eating will clear everything up, I eat anyway. Because in the moment when I feel hungry, in the moments before I set off to buy or make food that is processed, contains sugar or wheat or soy, it feels as if my head were going to explode, and in that moment it seems like such an easy choice to make: head explode or pizza? I'll take the pizza!
Of course, I should just let my head explode. I know I should. But the demon that lives at the locus of serotonin, cortisol, and my pineal gland refuses. And I have yet to figure out what to barter him with, or how to kill him, or how to make him shut up, or how to kick him off so I can climb to a higher elevation.
Back in late December, January, I kicked him off for over a month. It was glorious to be pain free, full of energy, clear. Weight fell off me, 13 pounds worth. My hair stopped falling out. But he came back. With a vengeance.
Each week, I come up with another plan to thwart him. This week I was going to have a protein shake for breakfast, fruit and yogurt for a snack, a salad with a fresh protein for lunch, and then come home and race walk and then just lie on the floor in my living room, just lie on the floor and let my head explode. But by Monday at 4pm, with my brain knocking around in my skull, all I could think about was pizza. I came home, did 3 miles, and then ate pizza.
When will I just stop?