It's finally happened. I've finally been (kindly) asked if I'm "sure" that I'm not "a hypochondriac". It's a fair enough question. One that I am more than certain many of my friends or acquaintances have refrained from asking out loud. It's a question that I've even wondered to myself a hundred times. Maybe I even hoped the answer was Yes more than a few times. Alas, the answer remains a resounding and persistent NO. Sigh. I think placebo pills might've done me right otherwise.
I didn't even pause. I didn't even LAUGH! Y'ALL. I just replied that "yes" I am sure because my body has made it very apparent repeatedly and increasingly more violently so. Ok, so maybe I was more fragile with my wording so as not to shock or offend. He sounded genuinely unsure when he asked me this after I had explained to him that I could not eat a variety of foods because of my "intolerance". I use the word intolerance because its true, if not in the way that most people assume. I don't just get a belly ache or some gas if I eat the wrong foods. Some people assume this, though I'd like to think more and more people are aware (if not weary) of all of the food allergies and intolerance that exist.
It's not something I chose or would ever choose. I don't not eat dairy because it's trendy and then stand on my pedestal and judge you while you eat your nachos. I'm only looking at you like that because I want to rip the nachos out of your hands and proceed to stuff my own face with them. Then your pizza. Then your burger. Then your ice cream. I miss cheese. But, I digress. (To be fair, how could I not? It's CHEESE!).
Nausea, diarrhea, bloating, headaches/migraines, lack of energy, stress/anxiety. IBS. One of those "embarrassing" "conditions. A mysterious one too, apparently. Even though it is very common, especially in women. No one really knows exactly what causes it besides some brain/gut dysfunction. That's not a fun sentence to hear. My brain AND my gut are dysfunctional? Gee thats great. People won't look at me strangely at all when I explain that. They will totally believe me when I say that's a thing. Its a thing! Ok?! Which is precisely why most people, including myself, try to avoid it. Along with the symptoms being a social no-no topic. Ew, poop. Amirite? I'm pretty sure that secretly everyone wants to talk about it though. No?