Springing Back Up

The past two weeks has been tough – the “rushing to the restroom” kind of tough. Fortunately, it did not turn into diarrhea, but I remained vigilant in making sure I was drinking enough water. I do not know what specifically caused this digestive turmoil, but I spent a lot of time thinking, “What in the world did I eat?” every time I sat on the toilet with my arms wrapped around me in agony.

My best guess is that I drank too much cow milk. For about three years now, I drank almond milk due to the fact that I have a lactose allergy. The allergy is not too bad, so I am able to enjoy regular diary products like cheese and ice cream in moderation.

After the anxiety of studying for final exams and waiting for the final grades, I was very relieved that I passed. In celebration, I decided to treat myself to Oreos with milk. Walking through the grocery aisles, my SO noticed milk in glass bottles. It really stood out compared to the all the plastic and hard cardboard packages. Intrigued, we inspected them more closely and learned that this milk was produced locally. Excited to see if there was a difference in taste, we decided to go with this instead of the usual almond milk.

As always, Oreos with milk was delicious and I had it almost every other evening as an end of the day treat. Almost a week of this routine went by before I suddenly started to get stomach cramps, gas, and very loose stool – in that order, an hour after every meal. Two days of this and I knew something was wrong, but I could not figure out the problem.

There was no fever and I didn’t have the body aches that are usually present when I am sick. It couldn’t be the stomach flu because I would be throwing up any food and drink I try to consume.

All I could deduce was that my body was trying to flush something out. To help it along, I took a shot of whiskey before bed to hopefully burn the bacteria away. I also got back into the habit of having a daily chia drink to introduce more fiber in my diet (studying for finals meant I was eating and drinking cheap, easy-to-make food).

For my stomach cramps, I applied green oil to my stomach and lower back. My family has been using this oil for as long as I remember. Whenever we have sore muscles, tension headaches, or blocked sinuses, we apply the oil and get some much needed relief within minutes.

Last week, a light-bulb went off in my head and I realized that the delicious, local milk was the only change in my diet. With a sad frown, I omitted all diary-related products from my food and waited to see if my digestive system would reset itself. Two days ago, my bowel movements were almost back to normal. I drank half a cup of milk and was excited to see everything was still fine.

Officially declaring myself okay, I returned all the yummy cheese and yogurts to my meals. This morning, I was getting ready for the day when I suddenly hear gas and a toilet flush echoing in the bathroom. A moment later my SO called out, “I’m sick…..”

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