The first time you have a bad flare and come out of the bathroom.
How you feel when anyone suggests you should get checked out by a doctor.
When you finally relent and see a doctor… and have to wait for all the test results to find out if you’re really dying.
When you find out you’re not really dying.
When your doctor tells you you’ll be on medication for the rest of your life but you don’t need to change your diet.
When you decide to take a break from your doctor so you can see a nutritionalist for a second opinion.
When your nutritionalist tells you to break up with gluten.
When you decide to binge anyway, and your loved ones try to stop you.
When you discover delicious, healthy food that’s good for your belly.
When you start to feel better thanks to your new diet
When you have the occasional dietary slip-up and it doesn’t turn into a binge.
When your new diet, together with your meds, becomes a way of life, and you feel better than ever.
When you realise that IBD doesn’t have to ruin your life and you can do all the things you used to do… even if it means less cake, cheese or booze. It’s all worth it.
(…And when it’s your birthday and you treat yourself to cake anyway – because it’s worth it, once a year).