Rasheed’s Story – No Filter on Fear

By: Rasheed Clarke
Companion IBD Contributor

Don’t tell me I’m cured. I will fight you. I don’t have colon, this is true. So if I don’t have a colon, I couldn’t possibly have ulcerative colitis, right? Well, just hang on. Put the name ulcerative colitis aside for a minute and understand what my life is like. I have six to seven bowel movements a day. I rarely pass formed stools. I take supplements to ward off iron deficiency. I wake up in the middle of the night, every night, to poop. I plan my days around bathroom visits. I invest in moisturizers because without them my hands would be red and raw from the washing that follows every bathroom trip. It’s all routine to me now, but it wouldn’t be to someone who was truly disease-free.

And there’s something else. Something my surgeon couldn’t remove alongside my colon. That’s the fear that no matter how well I may feel at any given moment, my body will crash again. It’s done it before. It’s done it time and time and agonizing time again. No matter how many pain-free, productive, happy days I may enjoy, the fear never goes away. Remember that, as I do, every day.

This is my life with IBD right now, unfiltered.

Brooke Bogdan