Next Steps

The past few weeks of contending with GI trouble might have been unbearable were it not for the gentle and generous nature of my husband and boyfriend. Both of them are so supportive of the lifestyle changes I need and are making accommodations to help me resolve the current “crisis.”

I’m met with patience and understanding, which are such blessings as I figure out the combination of changes that will serve me best long-term.

My endoscopy revealed no damage to my esophagus or stomach. This suggests to me that my recent episode was a combination of conditions reaching a critical mass; diet mixed with anti-inflammatory use fits this situation as I’d been taking more pain reliever the last few months for a stretch of headaches (which, for all I know, might have been related to my thyroid dose being too high).

The realist in me says, “look at this as your opportunity to get all your shit straightened out.” The other part of me still wants to whine about missing chocolate and coffee. I imagine my future involves some balance between the two.

Fortunately, I can count on the support of my loving partners, even when that means holding me accountable for doing what’s best for me when I’m in a mood to do otherwise. I know I’m asking a lot from them in this; they risk incurring my pissy alter-ego. I know I can cop an attitude and be uncooperative – even intimidating – when I’m feeling sorry for myself. So, I’m asking my men to give me a swift kick in the butt if they see that happening.

I can only imagine this must be a version of every man’s nightmare…when a woman asks for critical feedback, does she really mean it? No doubt, men are convinced whichever answer they choose, they’re “doomed.”

I know I’ve made made others walk on eggshells because I wasn’t prepared to hear hard truths, and I also realize the futility of that behavior. Honesty is one of the greatest gifts others give us.

While I’m not thrilled about the circumstance, my current situation can be viewed as an opportunity instead of a problem. By making lifestyle changes, I might be better able to tune into what my body is telling me, and that can only serve to improve my overall health. What I’ve been doing hasn’t been working, and in fact has been detrimental – but at this point, it’s not so severe as to warrant drastic measures. That alone is worth a heap of gratitude.

Both my husband and boyfriend identify acts of service among their top love languages.* By recruiting them in my efforts toward wellness, I allow them to show their love for me in ways that are natural and fulfilling for them. So, strange as it sounds, being vulnerable, even needy, isn’t inherently a bad thing. In fact, it may be necessary for helping others become the best versions of themselves.

Dr. Gary Chapman – The Five Love Languages

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