One of my worst nightmares is to go through days and nights fighting against a stomach full of gas. I started having the symptoms when I was 18. Since then I visited plenty of doctors who told me different things but all gave the same advice: “remove coffee from your life”. You see, I’ve been addicted to coffee since I was like what, 15? Coffee had brought so much joy into my life, it had made me see the bleak world a happy place to be: the grass was greener, the sky was bluer, and for Pete’s sake, people were nicer. I know it sounds pathetic but it was true until I found peace and happiness within, or whatever it means. Though coffee stopped providing me that oomph I needed, I still regard it as my one of my best companions. On the other hand, I love tea as well just not as much. I mean, I love tea but my feelings for coffee are way stronger. Coffee is great for almost all occasions, especially for someone who enjoys spending time alone, like me. To me, a pot of tea is for family, a group of friends, or lovers who enjoy eating dates. And a mug of tea just sounds so sad, imagine sweater weather, a girl wearing a sweater, holding a mug of peppermint tea or chamomile, in a cozy one bedroom apartment, staring out at the window, sad. It spells sadness all over it. I’m sorry I got sidetracked. Today’s blog is supposed to be about how I battle with my bloated stomach whenever it decides to haunt me.
First of all, I should mention that I have a list of forbidden food or substance which can cause gas, two actually, and they’re quite different from one another. I avoid consuming the things which I don’t really fancy. I’m not a picky eater, I can eat all types of vegetables. The problem is that a lot of types of vegetables can cause gas, I don’t really wanna name them here because I’ve learned from my experience that it’s true about the adage, one man’s meat is another man’s poison, so in this case, one man’s veggie is another man’s poison, you know, like, literally. What I’m saying is, people sometimes react differently from one another. I strongly encourage you to seek professional help if you’re not sure about the things you googled. Also, you should find time to experiment with yourself what you’re allergic to if you have any funny symptoms, just keep the dosage low, whatever it is.
- Reflect on what I’ve eaten wrong (or done wrong)
Reflections help not only in the future to prevent the same mistakes, but most importantly, it diverts my attention from my abdominal agony to my hemispheric activity where I’d be exercising my brain muscles. It’s like driving a vehicle to battle motion sickness, you can’t feel car sick if your mind is concentrating on something else rather than the discomfort. What I mean up there, done wrong, is that I could have skipped my meal, or drank coffee before eating, you see, a lot of people I know have no problems with drinking coffee first thing in the morning, but I can’t do that, ever. I tried and I was punished by not being able to do anything productive the entire day because I’d be dealing with all the gas.
- Sip hot water
I get very thirsty when my stomach is bloated, I don’t know why. But I can’t gulp because that would increase the gas. So I’ll boil hot water and sip it slowly. It makes me burp which makes me feel better in the end.
- Hold a pillow on my belly
The warm feeling is definitely helping me to feel more comfortable, I also like the pressure on top of it.
- Accept the fact that it happens and get on with work
I’m lucky that I’ve learned to control it and it doesn’t happen that frequent already, unlike those days when I had to skip classes or suffer through them. So I find it easier to forgive myself when it happens, because I know sometimes it isn’t entirely my fault. These days, my severity went down and I can still work with basically anything. Maybe I’ve mastered the mind over matter kind of thinking and it can’t bother me as much anymore. But again, the goal here is the same, focus on something else rather than the pain.
- Try to poop
I don’t like to sit on the toilet bowl and wait for it to come. I find it ridiculous. I have pills that can get my bowel movement running but that is really my last resort anyway. Usually happy thoughts and other activities are able to do the trick, to occupy my mind and the nightmare would fade and things go back to normal again.