Me and my Semicolon


I’m a young married perpetual student studying Civil engineering, working full time, chasing my dogs and waiting for the hubby to finish a doctorate. I have UC but I have a lot more than that, I like reading, studying, crafting everything from wood to fabric and other things.

Colitis Symptoms:

No current symptoms- Hooray!

Colitis Story:

Two years ago, as a second year grad student, I spent a wonderful 6 weeks in Mexico. After 6 weeks of exciting travel I returned home thinking I’d had a mild reaction to the local cuisine or maybe the reckless abandon with which I ate street food (just to be clear, I do not blame Mexican food or street food). After enjoying the gamut of symptoms for 8 months, severe anemia and a general inability to leave the house or bathroom for hours on end I decided to seek professional help. In short, after a handful of specialist visits and eventual scoping and diagnosis (march ’11) I was suddenly the proud owner of a halfbum-colon which I refer to as a semi-colon (see what I did there?).

Since then I was originally put on Lialda and Prednisone I had a brief break from symptoms that lasted long enough to get me through graduation with my MA (may ’11). I regressed the following June and tried to pretend it was going to get better until the following October. I didn’t so I went back to a new doc this time since my previous one was largely unavailable. New doc didn’t speak English so after a few visits with labored communication I convinced her to put me on asacol instead of a stronger immunosupressant or biologic. I switched doctors and Asacol worked like a charm after the first week, I’ve been on it since and hope to diminish my dose on my one year anniversary of remission in January 13.

So far Family support is hit or miss, most are sympathetic but often forget about my food sensitivities and think I can eat fried chicken again since I’m back to a normal weight. On the other hand, my husband is very supportive, knows what I can and can’t eat, helps keep me honest and has really just been a trooper throughout the diagnosis and disease process.

Currently my Dr is great, really understanding, shares my opinion of stronger drugs and is optimistic that I’ll keep this remission going.
My biggest concerns with Ulcerative Colitis are knowing that stress is a trigger and somehow avoiding it, keeping to a diet that suits my insides, and navigating sex during a flare (you know what i mean). Currently maintenance is the name of the game, but I’m not to the point that I trust my insides to continue to function normally.

Where I’d like to be in 1 year:

Coming off meds for good and running a half marathon.

Colitis Medications:

Meds vary from person to person, I highly recommend taking a pro/pre biotic and trying an elimination diet to see if you have specific food triggers.
Currently my flare care pack is reduced variety in diet, coconut water and peppermint/ chamomile tea.

written by Shana M

submitted in the colitis venting area

3 thoughts on “Me and my Semicolon”

    1. Bev, that’s really encouraging! do you have a probiotic recommendation? I’d been taking the kroger brand pro/prebiotic but they recently stopped carrying it locally and I’m afraid the one I stepped down to is not as fortifying as the other. I’m shopping :)

      1. Hi Shana!

        I am all about encouragement! I only wish I could persuade everyone to take probiotics and KEEP taking them forever.

        I take ULTIMATE FLORA CRITICAL CARE by RENEWLIFE. I should have stock in this company because I have recommended it on this website many many times. I could be rich by now!


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