Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Consummate Ostomate: A Reminder About the Importance of Self-Care

This post is mostly a note to self so that I don't forget my own stupidity, though fellow ostomates are welcome to regard it as a friendly reminder. 

Dear Self,
As a seasoned ileostomate of eight years we know the importance of keeping hydrated especially during stress and physical activity. Though we dislike lugging them around, we always tote along one or two 1-liter refillable water bottles when we are out in about in the summer.

Keeping hydrated is foremost on our mind especially since last Christmas when we wound up in the ER due to hypovolemic shock caused by a rampant norovirus (commonly called the stomach flu). The whole 48 hours was a whack-on-the-head type reminder that despite we're in the best of health our body will always be susceptible to dehydration.

This past week when we prepared and packed to attend the semi-annual CGOA Chain Link conference in Concord, NC, we once again grumbled a bit about lugging the cooler containing the water bottles, yet we did take them and we enjoyed drinking one liter on the ride. We remember graduate school like it was yesterday, though that was six years ago. Those LIOS modules prepared us for attending any kind of multi-day conference right down to the over-priced hotel luncheons. (Just a quick thought: It would be very interesting if CGOA conducted I-Group.) So between grad school, ulcerative colitis, and a permanent ileostomy, we know the importance of self-care. We could lecture on the subject.

We tend to be very good about keeping up with our various necessiments (necessary requirements). Yet, one of us (who shall remain nameless) decided to cut loose and let ourselves get caught up in the tidal wave of stimulation, excitement, inspiration, and sleep deprivation that is Conference. It only took us a couple of days of not eating properly and most significantly, not drinking enough water for our body to fall out of balance. We lost all day Friday of the conference thanks to a very evil headache and two bouts of vomiting.

Therefore, we are putting ourselves on notice: That next time we attend conference we will be kinder to ourselves. We'll take sports drinks in addition to water. We will eat right, therefore we will not buy the PDD luncheon. And if we room again with our mentor we might consider slipping some sleeping powder into her drink.

{On second thought, we were just as responsible for keeping her up and she might be planning the same thing with us! (Note within note to self: iocaine powder; begin developing tolerance to it.)}

Now that we've scolded ourselves it's time to get back to swooning over the cats and working on that design proposal. Until we manage to clone ourselves (imagine how those notes to self would read!) it's just us to get things done.

Love,
Self

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