I can't believe I made it through this semester. There were so many times that it felt like I couldn't keep fighting, but through Gods grace and an amazing support network I made it through!
A week after school started, I headed down to school after getting out of the hospital 4 days earlier. I had been in the hospital for 5 weeks and had had two surgeries in the past six weeks, but I was dead set and determined to go to school! I remember sitting on my bed as my dad and boyfriend unpacked my stuff. I couldn't help them unpack, because I was still weak from being in the hospital so long and wasn't able to do much food by mouth, but I did a great job of lending moral support. It was great to be at school, but it was scary too. I was coming into the semester a week late, into classes I knew nothing about having just had two surgeries. Needless to say I wasn't entirely sure I would be able to do it.
My mom stayed on campus for the first few days back at school and my boyfriend carried all my books to class, and I was somehow able to survive my first week back. I was scared to death of my adhesions reforming, but I was entirely unwilling to give up on school.
Week after week passes and I regained my strength and gained a little of the weight back, but my symptoms didn't get any better. At the end of October we scoped and decided the medicine wasn't working.
What to do, what to do? I was all out of crohns medications to try and my doctor was now recommending a transplant patient drug, tacrolimus. After looking up the drug I was convinced it wasn't the answer at this point in time so my doctor suggested bowel rest and supplemental nutrition.
At the beginning of November, I gave up food and started doing supplemental nutrition. I started with ensure and then moved on to absorb plus. We decided to do enteral nutrition and then realized it wouldn't work due to my gastroparesis. We finally settled on TPN and bowel test for a few months.
So my journey without food continued and I continued my semester. My classes were hard, and once I stopped eating, my nonexistent social life completely disappeared. But I was just happy to be at school. Others complained about classes and grades, but I was just thankful to be continuing my education, it's important to me.
I've had to give up a lot for my disease, but I'm not willing to give up my education. I finished he semester while doing TPN for 12 hours over night and traversing the field of home health! It was stressful, hard and mentally challenging, but I made it! I made it through the semester with what I think will end up being a 4.0 GPA and with a feeling of great accomplishment, because despite my debilitating illness, I have continued to fight for my dreams in my not so normal life.