An Introduction to My Disability

Baku Travel Blog

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Please, please, please, please, PLEASE, DO NOT tell me you are sorry to hear about he having this illness.  There is a difference between being disabled and living with a disability.

I have Crohn's Disease.  There, I said it.  Do not worry it; I cannot give you Crohn's.  I have tried various ways to give this fun barrel of merriment to every jerk-wad I have met and every former girlfriend who has screwed me over.  I have tried to use the power of my mind to project the Crohn's onto the downstairs butthead who likes to crank his stereo at 2am.  It hasn't worked yet.   I tried to give it to my former girlfriend who robbed me blind (no pun intended) and left me for a "friend" by hugging her and believing that my superhuman heat would be enough to transmit this condition onto her.  No luck.  I have tried all the ways possible short of peeing in someone's coffee (note to self: trying peeing in someone's coffee...j/k) and nothing has worked.  This condition is not contagious.  Do not worry; you will not get it from me by reading my blog or meeting me in person.

The usual question is what is Crohn's Disease.  Let me tell you it is honestly a "crappy" disease in both the literal and figurative sense of the word.  To explain as politely as I can.  It is considered an inflammation and ulceration of the intestines.  It can affect anything in the digestive tract from the mouth to the anus.  I guess I am fortunate that mine is located in the area where the small intestines meet the large intestines.  A "flare up" can be painful.  The stomach will bloat and it is pretty much impossible to eat or do anything.  There are also the times when I will use the toilet many times throughout the day.  To say that Crohn's Disease is a pain in the ass would be a great understatement.

So far I have had two surgeries on my stomach.  I will write more about those experiences at a later date.  The first was to remove about 18 inches (about 45cm) of my small intestines and to save my life.  The second was to remove my gall bladder and to save my life.  I was cut from my navel down to basically my pubic hairs for my first surgery and from my sternum to my navel for the second one.  I kept requesting that the surgeons put an arrow at the bottom of each scar, but they always refused.  At the present writing, I am not planning on a third surgery.

I used to curse my fate that of all of the diseases I could get I had to get the one that made me run to the toilet many times throughout the day and fart a lot.  Why couldn't I get the one that increased the size of my manhood and increase my performance in bed for hours?  But things like that are considered a blessing and not a disability.  Can you imagine if there was a disease that would do that?  Can you imagine someone actually complaining about it?  I can see some guy telling his doctor, "Doc, my manhood is now twice its normal size and I used to be only able to make sweet lovin' to my woman for 2 minutes and it is now 5 hours!"  And I can see the doctor punching the guy.

But this is my point.  I have two eyes that work well with glasses, my hearing is ok, my face is not hideous, my arms work, I can walk -- I am alive.  I think that I can probably out lift the mass majority of the readers of this blog.  I travel.  I work many hours.  I am not disabled but I am living with a setback.  I have many friends who would switch spots with me in a heartbeat and live life with Crohn's than to be force to live life needing a wheelchair to get around.  And I am also content with my belief that there are many people who would love to live life again even if it was with Crohn's.

I might not have been knocking at death's door when I had my two surgeries but I was standing at its doorstep.  When you come that close to dying twice, you have a choice; either let your disability control you or try to beat it.  I kind of feel like a heroic character from Norse mythology in knowing that my battle is a losing one, but I think subsiding to the illness would be a greater sin.  I do not know why I have survived.  Some people might say God, others might say luck, but this I do know, we all have a limited time on this Earth.  We can spend our life complaining about our setbacks and the injustices bestowed upon us or we can take what life gives us and just move onward.  (Henry Rollins once said, "When life hands you a lemon, scream, 'I love lemons! What else do you got for me?")  I am living with Crohn's and I know that it can come back in full force tomorrow and leave me crumpled like a tattered paper wad.  (It could very well win the war, but I will not let it win the daily battle.)  I also know that I could get run over by a crazy Azerbaijani driver when I go out tonight.  There is a big beautiful world outside that I almost didn't get to see.  And I am living on borrowed time, but really when we think about, aren't we all?

jennjeff1 says:
Too bad it doesn't get you special access to Baku Metro! ;-)
Posted on: Jul 01, 2008
tvillingmarit says:
Great blog as always from your tastature Ronnie. Love your;... a pain in the ass would bee a great understatement.
Posted on: Jul 01, 2008
jenn79 says:
You're an amazing person... whose only affliction is that he loves Henry Rollins, but hey we all have our shortcomings.. JUST KIDDING!!! =) xoxo
Posted on: Jul 01, 2008
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