Thursday, January 3, 2013

"Asher Yatzar", a prayer for the body

The body, with all it's Intricate systems, works perfectly, if left undisturbed.

If left undisturbed.

It has come to this... I think that my doctors, inadvertently of course, have been poisoning me with this "natural" laxative they have given me (two of my doctors). It is pure poison, at least to my body. I understand that other people can use it and have very successful results. For me, though, it is awful.

The stuff is called "Sena". It comes in many forms, and I was given the most gentle one, to drink in a tea. The first night I took it at 6pm. A whole cup. It tasted vile. I added honey and it was tolerable. I thought to myself "if this works well for me, I may have to drink this disgusting stuff every night." A very depressing thought, but I decided to just take one-day-at-a-time and see how it goes.
I woke at 5am to the worst stomach cramping; I mean moaning in pain. I thought to myself "OK, now I know it takes about 11 hours to work in my system. Tomorrow I will take it at 10pm or so".

The cramping got worse and worse. Once in the bathroom I was literally yelling in pain.
Then most of my insides came out; or at least it felt that way.

Thankfully I was able to get back to sleep after a few rounds of that, weak but finished with that horrible episode. (sounds like the castor oil incident, doesn't it. This entire chapter is traumatic and horrifying.)

Knowing that I am supposed to be able to go at least once a day, we (Robert and I) decided to go for only a half of a cup of weak tea this time. And I drank it at about 11pm. Man, that stuff tastes so disgusting. Nobody should have to put something that disgusting into their bodies every day. Red flag right there.

Well, my theory of 11 hours failed me. Oh, and also the "half a cup of weak tea" was off the mark.

Again I was up at 5:30 with intense cramps (no less than the night before), the resolution of which happened in terrible pain. It was really no different than the night before. That stuff is *pure poison*. I am throwing away the rest.

I am back to square one.
I think I am going to try homeopathy (thanks for offering, RK).

I am quite sure this problem is from my nerve pain medicine (which is working beautifully against the pain!). This medicine is a central nervous system inhibitor, as well as an anti-convulsant and anti-epileptic. It is in the same family as Lyrica, which, when I was on that, it worked successfully against my pain as well, but it also caused intestinal "paralysis". When I got off that (I maxed out on the dosage), and tried other types of medicines- all with either bad side effects or ineffective), I regained bowel function. So, it is clearly from this medicine. Before going off of it, though, I will try another treatment. The fact that it combats the nerve pain completely is awesome. But this side effect is horrible.

I want to share with you the prayer that a Jewish person says upon leaving the bathroom. Over the years of illness, I have had more and more respect and honor for this prayer; nobody should ever take for granted that they can do normal bodily functions all day. Until that was taken from me (via a catheter after NF), I didn't think much of it. When the cath was removed and I slowly and painfully made my way to the bathroom, and was able to do what my body needed, I came out, washed my hands, and said that prayer with tears in my eyes and a tremor in my voice. My body was coming back to me.

Here is the prayer in Hebrew, followed by an English translation:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר יָצַר אֶת
.הָאָדָם בְּחָכְמָה וּבָרָא בוֹ נְקָבִים נְקָבִים חֲלוּלִים חֲלוּלִים
גָּלוּי וְיָדוּעַ לִפְנֵי כִסֵּא כְבוֹדֶךָ שֶׁאִם יִפָּתֵחַ אֶחָד מֵהֶם
אוֹ יִסָּתֵם אֶחָד מֵהֶם אִי אֶפְשַׁר לְהִתְקַיֵּם וְלַעֲמוֹד לְפָנֶיךָ
.אֲפִילוּ שָׁעָה אֶחָת
.בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְהֹוָה רוֹפֵא כָל בָּשָׂר וּמַפְלִיא לַעֲשֹוֹת

"Blessed are You, Hashem our God, King of the universe, Who formed man with wisdom and created within him many openings and many hollows. It is obvious and known before Your Throne of Glory that if even one of them ruptures, or if even one of them becomes blocked, it would be impossible to survive and to stand before You (even for a short period). Blessed are You, Hashem, Who heals all flesh and acts wondrously."

About a year ago I added on a part that some people don't say, and it was the way I originally learned it- without saying "even for a short period". I added that part on as a way of strengthening my intentionality when I say this very important and pertinent prayer. It worked. I started to say the prayer slower and to think about each word individually.

This morning at 6am, questioningly, slowly, I stammered this prayer.


  1. wow wow wow but very sad and painful wow - how can they tell you about senna, it is natural, it is a plant but it is dangerous, it causes severe spasms, cramping even blood in stool.....and they make your bowel lazy and worsen the condition. It also causes dependene. NATURAL and SAFE and PAINFUL is lactulose syrup, you take it about 1 and 1/2 big spoon, it is not tasty, too sweet, but you can drink glass of water after that. It works on system of driving more water into intestines and you have watery stool. I am "Master Yoda" for that, I have rectal cancer so you can believe me. Try that, it is not expensive, every farmacy has it. Only first time you don't know how long it takes to work for you - so first time you had to be at home. For me it is hour and half to 2 hours, than I go, I sit for some time till everything goes and I am at ease till next day when I take lactilose again - it doesn't cause dependence, after you stop taking medication which causes constipation you can stop using it, but also you can use it all yur life. Even babies can take that. Please, please try this, I already wrote it at the beginning of this problem ...doc told me to do so, only ONE, and I have had this problem more than a zear after surgery, now when I say I am more than happy, can work all day - the others also say, oh yes it is good thing - why didn't tolde me so a year ago........

    1. Yes, you did mention this. I don't know why I didn't try it, other than my doctor told me to the senna, so I did. Do you live in Israel? Is it called that here? It isn't peglax (or miralax), is it? That product also makes the stools soft by retaining water in the system, but it is taken differently, dissolved into a liquid and drank. I do use peglzx regularly, but it doesn't get the bowels working, just makes the stool soft. I want to try the lactulose, and wonder what it is called here...

  2. have you tried drinking tea with fresh SHeba? long ago a naturopath recommended it and it worked great. I drank about 2 cups a day but several people had sheba growing and they have all been cut down. It may not be strong enough for you and perhaps every day is too much to hope for. Good luck.

    1. I have never heard of Sheba. What is it's English name?
      I have heard that a few cups of hot tea with lemon helps digestion and bowels, but I haven't tried that either.

  3. Lactulose is called Avilac syrup. Here's the link: Yes in Israel!

    1. OK, so I now know that Avilac and lactulose is not the same. My pain doctor gave me a prescription for lactulose, and I received a bottle of Avilac from a friend who doesn't need it anymore.
      In the mean time, I am going to try homeopathy through my sister-in-law in Modi'in.
      I had *9* shilshuls today from milk of magnesia. (and I feel another is going to happen before I go to sleep...) Awful. My body is extremely sensitive to every laxative, it seems.
      I hope the homeopathy works. I will give it a month or so. If not, I'll try these other products. We'll find something. B'ezrat Hashem.