It’s common for people with IBD to look online for patients who have a similar disease journey to their own. For men, however, there are fewer places to find such a peer because there are not as many men in the IBD influencer space as there are women. That’s where Rasheed Clarke, author of Three Tablets Twice Daily, blogger, and ulcerative colitis and j-pouch patient steps in. Hear Rasheed contrast how his running career is different before and after j-pouch surgery, his thoughts on being one of the few male voices in the online IBD community, how we can encourage more men to share their journey, and the wild and wonderful thing he did with a toilet for World IBD Day in 2017.
I fell off the wagon in a big way in the meditation department. I broke my streak and have not meditated in several days.
Progress is never linear: there are always setbacks. I’m certainly used to this phenomenon but it’s also true that it’s easier to keep going with something than it is to start it. Quitting is so, so easy. I’m not going to say that I quit, but rather that I had a pause. The family schedule was in flux and I was hyper focused on other aspects of my life; mainly my work, which has become more than a full-time job in recent weeks. Continue reading
This is the second week of my attempts at meditating on a regular basis. I fail, of course. But I also succeed. At some point I know a regular meditation is supposed to be something to look forward to, like a good meal or the perfect cocktail. However, I’m still struggling to fit it into my day and not to see it as another box that needs to be checked along with other items like taking my medication and returning phone calls (two things I also fail at almost daily). There’s a host of issues that come up in the second week of this experiment, most of which don’t have any answers.
Remember, this is my journey and no one should take my missteps as absolution from trying meditation. I’m still going to recommend that everyone try it. Continue reading
Most people find meditation to be helpful and a worthwhile undertaking. I do recommend that people try it, especially people who have IBD. But for me, however, it hasn’t been quite the experience I expected.
I recommend that people with chronic illness meditate. I even did a podcast with Dr Tiffany Taft, a behavioral psychologist, that focused heavily on getting started with meditation as a tool for stress relief.
But me? Yeah, I don’t meditate. Or, I didn’t.
I have my time when I’m running or walking, either outside or on my treadmill, that I consider my meditation time. It’s a moving meditation. That’s what I tell people. I get quite cranky if I get interrupted or if I don’t get that time. But it’s not really traditional meditation, and I know that.
The time came when my friend and colleague, Dr Barbara Bolen, had an offer for a free trial of a meditation app. So I asked her if I could have it, she graciously gave it to me, and I downloaded the app. This is my journey through the first week, having never done any formal meditation in the past.
This is not a typical meditation blog post, but read through to the end to fully understand the challenges that are specific to me. I’m still going to recommend that everyone try meditation. Continue reading
How does stress affect IBD? We know that stress does not cause IBD, but it does affect the disease. How does IBD actually cause stress, and what can we do to balance our lives in such a way that it does not affect us in a negative way? I talk with my guest, Dr Taft, about how she advises patients with chronic diseases on relieving stress and the tips and tools that have worked for her and her patients in integrating a comprehensive stress relief program into daily life.