Wednesday, 19 July 2017

A Messy Change

I look at changes in the way my body works very closely. I work hard to identify if they are are part of aging, a part of normal life, or a part of ALS. Sometimes it's a part of all three. The last couple of mornings, on transfer from bed to sling, my bowels seems to have felt the need for immediate release. There was nothing I could do to stop it, nothing I could hold. I didn't have the muscles needed. The sling squeezed and forced the necessary openings; stuff came out.

My first thought is beer. For both Monday evening and Tuesday afternoon, beer represented a reasonable portion of my non-dietary intake, Kilkenny Irish Ale on Monday and an Milestones Red Ale on Tuesday. Beer, especially draft beer, seems to make my tummy rumble. Perhaps it is time for me to switch from draft to bottled beer. Perhaps I need the pasteurization.

Then there is the dietary component. Both days consisted of irregular eating. On Monday it was wing night at the pub. Then, after a night out, I came home and ate a half sandwich Kathy had made me earlier in the day along with a small can of smoke oysters. Kathy said she though the oysters might be the culprit. Yesterday I went to a matinee at the movies with Tonny where I consumed a large bag of popcorn. Then I met friends at Milestones for beer. My dinner was ColeSlaw and canned Ravioli. Okay, not my best dietary efforts. Perhaps it was the popcorn.

The worst case scenario, from my perspective, is loss of muscle tone in my perineum. I still have sphincter control; that muscle is not affected by ALS. It's the other muscles "down there", gluteus muscles, abdominal muscles. Those are the ones I need to aid in both the process of holding in and of pushing out. When the sling spreads my cheeks, those muscles are no longer strong enough to come to the aid of the one muscle holding back the mudslide.

It's another thing I will have to learn, another change. My hope is that it is just the beer or food. My fear is that I may have to make another adjustment in my routine, going to the toilet at night as well as in the morning, or just going at night altogether. I wonder what the sling will have to say about that!

1 comment:

  1. My father got to the point where he started wearing a diaper to bed at night as he too started having issues in the morning getting to the restroom. These accidents really started to bring him down and affect his day. He would continually try to figure out what he ate that caused him to soil himself. It got to the point where he didn't want to eat as he feared having an accident.