An answer to the questions I never thought to ask.

by Anonymous

At the age of 21 I considered myself a very healthy person. I was active and took a lot of care to eat a balanced diet. Around exams for my final year in University, I spent two weeks in and out of the hospital in the most intense pain of my life. After not having a bowel movement for 14 days, puking up anything I ate, not being able to sleep, and developing a hemmeroide I went through x-rays, tests, ultrasounds, awkward enemas, powerful laxatives and the same answer over and over, You probably ate too much cheese, you are constipated, drink more water, eat more fiber.
I was terrified. The last thing I ever imagined was that this was a manifestation of something I had been dealing with on a smaller scale my entire life.
A friend opened my eyes to the real issue, not a doctor. Her eyes widened when I told her about my two weeks of hell. She had gone through the same thing the previous year. She started asking me questions about my body that I had never considered a problem before.
I always considered it normal to not have a bowel movement for 3 days at a time. I also thought it was normal for my stomach to bloat to almost twice the size and back again several times during a week no matter how much I exercised and to always feel like I didn't have enough energy. She challenged me - go gluten free for a week.
I have never felt so good in my entire life. I couldn't believe it. It took those two weeks for me to find out there was an underlying issue I had been dealing with my entire life.
I wish there was more awareness out there for people like me who think that their bathroom issues are just normal because they have never known anything different.

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