What’s Wrong with That Tummy?
I have spent the last five years feeling (at least 60% of the time) like there is an inflated balloon in my abdomen. And in the sprit of over-disclosure which you have all come to enjoy, I will tell you that the way the noisy streets of Buenos Aires mask the sounds of the farts I hold in (sometimes for hours, in the company of others) is one of the things that makes living in such a noisy place tolerable.
In space, no one can hear you scream. In Buenos Aires, no one can hear you fart.
Without getting too, too graphic, I’m sick, at least a little sick, almost all the time, and I’ve come to view it as my body’s natural state.
I’m only 35, but I’ve had to give up so many things I enjoy already. Alcohol/drugs/The US = psychosis. Cigarettes = bronchitis. Milk = vomit. Cheese = gas. Soy = malaise, rashes, headaches, and worse.
Is it that I know whatever I’ll find out will only restrict me more that’s kept me from the doctor? Or is it my general distrust of doctors? Is it my lack of health insurance (my most severe health problem and one that’s been a fact of life for me for over 10 years)? Some combination of all of these?
Maybe it’s that I really don’t want to be one of the people who, when given the option of several perfectly good foods in someone’s home or in a restaurant says, “Oh, I don’t eat that.” I don’t like being the person that turns down anything fried, covered in cheese, or lubed-up with mayonnaise and will often eat things I know are going to make me feel like dog-shit rather than be that person.
But as the years go by, the times I refuse to be the party whiner are becoming more painful. So, yes. Now I will turn down your beer, your wine, your fucking empanada, your god damn pizza, and the motherfucking ice-cream that makes you fake an orgasm in front of the entire heladería. Yes, I already am that extra special snowflake that can’t have what you’re having. And I’ll try not to be a crybaby about it.
But I just don’t want there to be anything else I can’t have.
So whatever my reasons, I have put off seeing the doctor about whatever my problem is for years and years. Until today.
Today, my boyfriend Seba scheduled a session with the gastroenterologist for me, and there was no escape. Aside from having to go into grueling detail about the nature of my bowel movements in front of my boyfriend, it is really one of the most romantic things anyone has ever done for me. How else do you tell someone you really care besides saying, “Enough fucking around. You’re going to the doctor.” Really. Don’t read sarcasm where there is none.
Of course the doctor told me that 90% of what I enjoy eating will have to go for now. No peaches. No watermelon. No oranges. No peas. No coffee. Oh, and I’m supposed to drink lactose free milk (For the love of all that’s holy, no.). And I have pouted and frowned and felt sorry for myself (as much as it hurts to admit that).
But if I can’t have all those things, or booze, or cigarettes, I can have a guy in my life who won’t let me wiggle out of going to the doctor. And really, if that’s not romance, I don’t know what is.