Happy Anniversary Hubby, Sorry I am getting anal probed by another guy…

Today is our wedding anniversary and I jumped out of bed at 5:50am… to have another round of Moviprep and another round of water diarrhea… noice.

I am  all prepared today.  I had the jug of Moviprep in the bathroom (yeah I know it’s yuck), had my heater turned on and magazine and iPad ready to go.  I sculled the Moviprep as much as possible and finished going to the bathroom by 9:30am.  I snoozed for a bit while people kept ringing me to confirm appointments etc (arrrggghhhh!) and by noon, we headed out to the rainy and cold Melbourne day to the hospital.

We got to the Admissions counter and the lady looked me up and down.  I explained I am having a procedure done here and gave her my name and she asked for my DOB, then exclaimed “you look too young for your age!  I thought you are a student!” LOL  And this is an Asian speaking to another Asian.  For someone who haven’t been asked for their ID for years now it’s a compliment😛 then again I might have been a mature aged student…

Drabby Waiting Room

We waited in the drab waiting room with mismatched furniture for a bit then it was time to change into my sexy open-back gown for the show.   It must be colonoscopy day because I saw my gastroenterologist and anaesthetist going in and out of the same theatre.  Good to know I am not the only one getting probed *smirks*.

I was pushed into the operating theatre(day procedure room?!) and it looked nothing like Gray’s Anatomy.  It looked more like a storeroom with all these boxes of stuff and a big screen.  The anaesthetist chatted to me and asked how my Moviprep experience was.  I asked whether there are any other flavours other than lime/lemon and he said trust me- all the flavours are bad :P  The Gastroenterologist piped up to say there is a chocolate flavour, but seriously, that will just spoil my love of chocolate I think.

Wasn’t too sure why this is still stuck to me

Anyways, although the anaesthetist said sometimes people might stay awake for the duration I pretty much zonked out straight away.  The next time I woke up, I am already in the recovery room drooling all over my oxygen mask.

Hubby came to pick me up and was pretty surprised that I am already at the reception, chomming hospital grade sandwiches.  The Gastroenterologist came to see me, telling me that the procedure went well and he couldn’t see anything abnormal from the probe, but need to get the biopsy results to see if there is anything truly wrong or if there are parasites.

PARASITES?  I thought to myself… that would confirm what my colleague Les always said to me “you must have worms cos you ate so much and don’t get fat!” LOL

Anyway the nurse gave me the Gastroenterologist’s scribbles and my med cert and send me on my merry way.  If someone can decipher his writing please drop me a line.

Anyway, back home now and recovering.  Still feeling a bit woozy and still having watery diarrhea.  I hope that’s a sign that I can overeat today without intaking any calories, cos, well, it’s going straight out right?

In the end, having a colonoscopy and endoscopy isn’t as scary as I thought, nor was it very painful to be honest.  While I still don’t like the sound of it, if I have to do it again I won’t be that worried and scared next time.

I just want to get through today without pooing my pants….

So this is it.  Finally after weeks of stressing I will be having my procedure done tomorrow to see if I am a celiac.  First of all though, I have to do a wonderful process called “cleaning out my bowels”… yikes.

Part One: All Bunged Up

3 days beforehand, I had to go on a low residue diet, which mean I cannot have any veggies or fruit or nuts.  I had to restrain myself as I put veggies in everything.  So the last 3 days I’ve been having:

  • Breakfast: White bread and butter
  • Lunch: Potato, goat’s fetta, bacon and egg bake
  • Dinner: Noodle soup/ lamb chops with more potatoes

Whilst it doesn’t sound so bad, I felt as if I am all bunged up and bloated.   I think I need to be a vegetarian for at least a week after this.  I even got really worried this morning as I had really bad tummy cramps after having bread today.  I wonder if I am really intolerant to gluten.

Since I am not supposed to have anything to eat after 6pm, I rushed home after work to have something to eat.  I went through my options and decided to have instant noodles… heehee.  I actually have to use a tea strainer to get all the dehydrated chives out before I can eat it.

Part Two:  Is this supposed to give me the shits or the pees?

Alright!  6pm rolled in and I had a first taste of Moviprep, which tasted like “Shit Fuck Shit”.  To be really specific, it has a fishy sweet flavour.  Yuck.  Moviprep is supposed to help empty my bowels and gave me watery diarrhoea (niiiiiccceee)…. but so far, after drinking close to a litre of that shit plus 500 mL of liquid, it’s  only giving me the pees.  WTF?

7:49pm…. still no diahorrea…*twiddle my thumbs*…. I was randomly reading this blog and she said at about 7:55pm is when the shit literally hits the fan… OH…. Ohhhh Ohhhh… OK GTG…

Part Three: OHHHHHHKAAAAAYYYY, shit is hitting the fan!

10:29pm… Man, OK, shit DID hit the fan at approx 7:53pm.  And again.  And again.  And again and again and again.  I don’t actually know how many rounds I’ve done, but I have used two rolls of tissues and decided that I REALLY should have bought tissues with aloe vera or something equally soothing.  Thankfully I asked hubby to buy me Vaseline before he got home from work.

I haven’t shat my pants yet thank gawd.  It’s slowing down at the moment so I have bravely ventured out to the living room to watch TV.  At weird moments my tummy would rumble and I would make a 15m dash to the bathroom.  Well, at least it’s a good training for my upcoming Tough Mudder event, testing my reflexes.

Part Four: Over and Out

12:55am… OK I am pretty sure my ordeal is over for tonight and I can sleep.  But first, I need to prep up my Moviprep for tomorrow’s binge drinking session that starts at 6am.

Simply taking a sniff of that horrible Moviprep makes me want to spew so I am not too sure how I go tomorrow morning.  Hopefully it will go down instead of up…

Peace out all- thanks for tuning in and wish me luck for tomorrow morning!

Frustrating week

I am having such a bad week.  I was supposed to go into hospital for the procedure today, but my Gastroenterologist decided to reschedule me.  I am sure that he has a very valid reason to do so, it’s just that I have pysched myself up to this procedure, and now I had to wait 2 more weeks.  I think I am just not coping very well because of that.
It doesn’t help that I call the Gastroenterologist office to confirm a few things, that’s why then go “OH, you are Piggyeatalot…. OH right!  We are supposed to call you… your appointment has changed… but we can’t tell you what time yet.  Can I call you back?”

 

It just felt so unprofessional.  I felt like I had to call them before they remembered me.  It doesn’t make me feel very valued at all.

 

Anyway, the procedure is now scheduled in two weeks time and the long wait and anxiety continues….

Musings

As my colonoscopy appointment is approaching, I remembered the last time my dad had a colonoscopy check up.  I didn’t realise he had a check up done until he asked me: Did you want to see a video of my latest medical check up?

I tentatively said, “Ehh… Okay…”  all the while thinking: huh? There’s a video on my dad’s latest medical check up?  What sort of check up is this?:/

So there I was, in the study of my parents’ house, with my mum and dad, watching a video of my dad getting an anal probe… I think the procedure lasted about 20 mins but it felt like a lifetime, watching this little tube worming its way into my dad’s intestines, seemingly zapping away at stuff (cysts maybe?).  occasionally there would be some brownish yellow floaty object that would be in the way and the doctor would deploy some water to squirt it away… =_=

Mmmmm I wonder if I should return the favour and ask HIM to watch MY video?
GAWD.  This is sooooo wrong.

Low Residual Diet

As the day of my check up looms closer, I am feeling more anxious and depressed.  I know I shouldn’t worry, whatever happens happens etc etc.

I thought I could calm down by doing some yoga, but the quiet times made me even MORE anxious… I felt as if I wanna crawl underneath some blankets and just sleep my weekend away, which I did this weekend.  If I had filled my weekend with activities or watched TV all weekend, it would probably distract me better.  Sigh….

I am also reading through the instructions for my check up, and it said I need to eat at least 3 days of low residue food, including refined everything (like white bread, cakes, doughnuts, noodles, brioche, french toast etc… AKA no wholemeal anything)  It sounded like a sh!tload of fun, but when you also have to factor in no vegies for 3 days, only meat meat and more meat (or skinless potatos), the veggie loving me was horrified.  I normally make sure I that I at least put some herbs in my stew, some extra wakame in my instant noodles,but my low residual diet would accept no such healthiness.  It recommended chicken and noodles, sandwich with meat (and don’t even think about mustard!), pasta with white sauce (no tomato sauce!), no oats, stews with no veggies!

Sadness!  I am also scared that I would accidentally chuck some vegies/ herbs in it cos I am just so used to it!  How the hell do people survive without vegies ffs?

I have been thinking what I should have for that three days..

  • Pasta carbonara (no onions or herbs)
  • Quiche with bacon
  • Mince beef and egg over white rice? Or chicken and egg over white rice?
  • Pan fried potato rosti with sunny side egg and truffle oil (mmm that wouldn’t be too bad I suppose!)
  • Shin Ramen with no dried veggies packet

I almost caught myself saying “Spag Bol” then realised it was “too healthy” cos it has tomato sauce in it… rolls eyes

Darrrghhh frustrating specialists!

So I organised an appointment with my Gastroenterologist to check if I have celiac disease.  I was so nervous about booking an appointment that I even forgotten to ask them what time my appointment is!

I only knew what time the appointment is when I received the paperwork.  I don’t know, maybe it’s just me feeling frustrated, but it seemed as if not a lot of information is provided to me… I had to proactively ask them the most basic things.

So I had to make a list.  Please feel free to add onto my list if you think that I’ve forgotten something.  Then I will call Them up to ask  Thanks🙂

Here are a list of things I had to ask them (ie they did not provide to me):-

  • I need to go on a low residual diet 3 days before the procedure, and the day before had to drink all this Movieprep thing to cleanse my intestines out… there’s supposed to be a time when I stop drinking/eating.  What time would that be?
  • I had to take the pill but if I will be cleansing my intestines, the pill would lose effectiveness… should I take it a few hrs earlier? (thus screw up my pill taking time?)
  • When does the procedure finish? (u know the basic stuff)
  • When will I know the results? (once again basic stuff)
  • If I am diagnosed with celiac disease, what’s next?
  • If I don’t have celiac, what’s next?  More test? Dietician?
  • When can I start eating!?!?!?!? (very important question! :P)

The specialist also seemed to have forgotten to fill out some of the form =_=  Oh well I will let them deal with that!

Anywayz, if there are more questions you can think of please let me know! :)  Thanks!

Procedure Scheduled!

Finally told my parents about potentially having celiac disease.  At first they thought that it’s because I ate too much food (I probably normally eat too much food :p) but once they realised how serious this is, they freaked out and urged me to get the procedure (endoscopy and colonoscopy) done, ASAP!

Cos work is quite busy I was going to leave it till December, but after hubby and parents’ constant urging, I have decided to bite the bullet and do it.  I know also, in the back of my mind I am delaying this procedure because 1) it’s not as if it’s fun to get anal probed 2) If I indeed have celiac, the earlier I get diagnosed, the earlier I will have to say goodbye to yummilicious bread, pasta, dumplings and buns.

But, it’s better knowing as soon as possible so I can get treatment and prevent my little intestines from getting further damage by my gluttonous ways.  The upside is, supposedly before diagnoses you are not supposed to abstain from gluten and wheat, because then you might not get a proper diagnoses.
So here I am, stuffing myself with instant noodles, gyoza, pasta and buns, once again having uncomfy belly and heartburny sensation, until the end of Sept when I get the procedure done.

Eat to Live vs Live to Eat

I always thought that I am that sort of person who live to eat, and scoff at people who claim that they eat to live and treat their food as “fuel”.  “Bah.. that’s BS” I used to think.
Now that I am stuck with this low FODMAP diet and with one of my best friends being told that she is allergic to the things she loved most, I began to sympathise with people who eat to live.  I know at least for myself, not having the trigger foods like wheat, milk, fruits and legumes, I certainly felt less bloated.  I don’t feel like I am dragging a huge big rock around, having gas pains and getting all farty.  I don’t wake up at night anymore feeling sick, or have some sorta weird reflux/ heartburn thingy.

In a way I am glad that the doctor suggested that I reduce certain food to see if it makes a difference- it did.  I am also gald that for now, before diagnoses, I still have a choice to “Live to Eat” and eat all my favourite foods (ramen, pasta, dumplings etc) and just have a big bad FARTASTIC day (yep I made that word up!).  Of course I won’t abuse it, but once in a while if I could indulge that would be good.

After diagnoses, if I indeed have celiac disease, things would be very different.  But I won’t think too much about it now, and deal with it as it happens.

I am going to share a little recipe with you guys.  This recipe contains all the food that I like and it’s low FODMAP.  It’s also dedicated to my friend Froggy Dorenedo who can’t eat her favourite potato, rice, wheat, gluten, as well as ginger, seafood mix and some nuts.

Chicken & Seaweed Buckwheat Noodle Soup

A lot of people thought that buckwheat contains wheat, it doesn’t, but you have to make sure you are buying 100% Buckwheat noodles.  A lot of places sell “buckwheat noodles” made of a combination of wheat and buckwheat.

1 Chicken Frame
Enough Water to cover the pot
Dried Japanese Seaweed (stuff like wakame)
100% buckwheat noodle
A pinch of Salt
A pinch of Japanese 7-spice Shichimi tōgarashi (if prefered)

I would normally put the chicken frame in cold water and bring it to a boil.  There would be a lot of scum floating about when boiled (1 min or 2). Discard the water, rinse the chicken and put some fresh water in the pot and put the chicken in and wait until it boils again.

Turn the heat to low and let it simmer  for at least 15 mins (longer if you want more flavour!).  I am usually cooking hubby’s dinner so I tend to forget about my simmering soup- which is good- I get to extract the flavours of the chicken frame!

Time to cook your noodles!  You can cook it in a fresh pot, or like me, if you CBF’d washing up just use the same pot as your chicken stock.  I reckon it will absorb the flavours, however, a word of warning, the soup would thicken from the buckwheat flour.

Fish out the chicken frame.  Now buckwheat noodles are quite a delicate little thing.  If you stir it too much it will all crumble and melt and be all clumpy.  So fan it out like you are chucking spaghetti into a pot, and just slightly ruffle it to make sure it’s not sticking together.  Boil for 3 mins and simmer for 2 mins (or whatever your packet instruction said).

Fish out the noodles when it’s done and rinse the buckwheat noodles or it will stick together!

Add your pinch of salt and with the stove switched off add the seaweed in the hot stock (you don’t want to boil seaweed).  When the seaweed is sufficiently rehydrated, you can put your noodles into a bowl and pour the hot chicken and seaweed stock over it.

Sprinkle a bit of Shichimi tōgarashi (Japanese 7 spice) if you like, and enjoy!

Annoying people who don’t listen to your whole question first…

OK, I know that having dietary restrictions, especially a looonnnggg list is sometimes annoying for the restaurant owners/waiter/ waitress, but please let me finish before jumping in!  Sometimes, they don’t even listen!

One place that really annoyed me was Raku Grill in Las Vegas.  I am currently trying to find places which supports my FODMAP diet and had to email different restaurants going “Do you cater for FODMAP?  FODMAP is…”  Sometimes, I just ask for wheat free and lactose free and try to figure out the others by myself.

So I was emailing Raku Grill in Las Vegas:

HI there,

I will be visiting  and would love to dine at Raku, however I have some dietary restrictions.

I cannot have:

  1. fructose (fruit juice, dried fruit, onion, honey)
  2. wheat (soy sauce, some vinegar which contains wheat, udon, ramen, batter)

I am not severely intolerant (cross contamination doesn’t bother me), but could you suggestion some dishes I could try in your restaurant?

Thanks for your help

They emailed back:

Thank you for contacting us.
We do not take/ change any reservations through email/voicemail.
Please contact us at (702)367-3511 from Monday through Saturday after
2pm until close.
We look forward to hearing from you!
 
NB: Best time to contact us is 2pm-5pm
Thank you

Erm… WTF?  I didn’t ask to BOOK!  I can’t book until I know what you can serve me!  SIGH.  Well, after shooting an annoyed email back to them (Hi there, I am NOT booking a table.  Please read my email and respond accordingly), it turns out that they don’t cater for my intolerance.  No apologies on how they have misread my email either.  Oh well.  Sucks for them.

Another case to the point is when I visited this gorgeous cafe in Melbourne called Hardware Societe.  They have awesome food and they can offer gluten free bread for some menu items, but strictly no other substitution.  I proceeded to ask about changing my bread to gluten free, and the waitress immediately said “No changes!”  I almost rolled my eyes and snapped at her.  However, I just sighed inwardly and patiently explained to her that the menu said I can have gluten free bread.  I have been here longer than you have honey, I know the drill about no substitiution or changes except gluten free bread, and soy in coffees, hot choc..

Thank goodness Hardware Societe serve great food.  Or else I would not have gone back.  Check out my food blog about Hardware Societe and see what you think?  Would you go back to a cafe with great food but bad service?

Feeling Touched

Today I woke up and received two emails that almost made me tear up with joy.

I was frantically preparing my US trip in October, trying to find restaurant that can accommodate FODMAP.  I emailed all the restaurants, feeling sad and frazzled I went to sleep.

This morning I woke up to two emails: one from Kelly at Scomas Seafood San Francisco and another one from Kevin Erving, the Executive Chef of Four Seasons Resort in Lanai, Hawaii.
Kelly’s email said:

“We have lots of things for you to choose from on our menu. We have nearly 40+- gluten-free items all of which are marked with an asterisk on the menu and many more which can be made gluten-free with minor changes.
As far as your other restrictions they are not a problem and when you let your server know they will involve the chef and come up with something that you can enjoy.
If you see anything in particular on the menu that you are interested in let me know and I can let you know how or if we can prepare it to suit your needs.”

Nearly 40 plus gluten free items and can come up with something that I can enjoy!  AWESOME!  She was so friendly and unfazed by my list of intolerances!  Amazing.
Even more amazing was that I received an email from the Executive Chef of Four Seasons Resort in Lanai, Kevin Erving.  Kevin said:

“My name is Kevin Erving I am the executive chef of the two resorts here on the resorts on Lanai’.  I would be more than happy to speak with you about dining options for your upcoming trip to Lanai in November.  We are very familiar with accommodating special dietary requests of our guests.

I would prefer to speak with you in person to find out more about your personal likes and dislikes so that we may customize menus and food choices to your liking during your stay.
If you could please provide me with a contact number and a good time to reach you, I will make sure that your dining options during your stay are exceptional.”

I seriously teared up reading that.  I am so touched by how progressive US seemed to be with dietary requirements.  It would be fantastic if Australia had that also.  People have been very accommodating, however the food choices at any given restaurants are minimal.

Thank you guys, you made my day.