Later today I will be flying back home. I’m not looking forward to the plane ride because I am severely bloated and feel like the woman on the left of the drawing. Normally I feel like the woman on the right. Needless to say, it is going to be hard to get comfortable. I will admit that it won’t be as difficult to get comfortable as a 6’2″ body builder, but nevertheless it will be hard.
Part of the reason that it will be difficult to get comfortable is that when you have Gastroparesis and are experiencing extreme bloat it is hard to get comfortable anywhere. Your clothes don’t fit, your constantly pulling them out from under your bloated stomach roll, and your constantly squirming in your seat to attempt to relieve as much pressure from your stomach as possible.
It also gets difficult to mentally deal with. It is hard to see yourself increase by 2 sizes in a day by doing a basic human function: eating. I’m a delicate eater and have tiny meals so it isn’t like I ate everything in line at a buffet. My grand total for yesterday was: two forkfuls of scrambled eggs, half a sandwich, some french fries, and a strawberry crepe. That is it! Not a lot of food by any stretch of the imagination and all of it was 100% organic. I also walked around a city for about 4 hours, so I definitely burnt enough calories for the day. So why the heck do I look 5 months pregnant? I tried holding my stomach in as I walked around town, but it was getting too painful. Then finally, I said to myself, forget it! I’m going to walk around and let everyone think that I am pregnant. Once I did this, I started to feel better.
Gastroparesis bloat is a vicious cycle. There is always a low spot where you just want to lay in bed and cry. You want to cry over having no control over your body any more. You want to cry over needing clothes in 3 different sizes. You want to cry over not having the body shape that you once had. (Whether it is extreme bloating or extreme weight loss. Several people with Gastroparesis fight long and hard to maintain a frame of 100 pounds.) However, crying in bed will get us nowhere. It will only cause us to miss out on the life that is out there for us. It will only cause us to cry more over what we are missing in life. It will only cause us to become more depressed. It will take us down a road that is extremely difficult to climb out of.
I refuse to let Gastroparesis get the best of me. Sometimes it does, but I try to fight it as much as I can. I’ll just remind myself of what a Gastroparesis Sister told me about her recent trip, “Yes, I ate things I shouldn’t have. Yes, my slacks now feel like the are sawing my body in half. But it was worth every minute of it. It was worth acting normal and experiencing things I would have normally experienced while traveling.” So when I get home the first thing I’m going to do is put on my trusty yoga pants to limit the discomfort and pat myself on the back for not letting Gastroparesis slow me down on this trip and for not letting it make me depressed more than 30 minutes.