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“Diverticulosis happens when pouches, “diverticula” form in the wall of the colon. If these pouches get inflamed or infected, it is called diverticulitis. Diverticulitis can be very painful.” – WebMD
On May 22, I awoke to serious abdominal pain. This book is an illustrated account of the ensuing six weeks. I was diagnosed with Diverticulitis. My life suddenly lay in the hands of the medical system. The month of June was full of eye opening experiences in health and illness. A fistula is a hole, I had one in my colon and it abscessed into the surrounding fatty tissue to form a large pocket of infected bacterial funk. This raised my condition to a complex status. Surgery was a must, yet I had to get relatively healthy before going under the knife. My diet was restricted from either; no food, to only clear liquids to low fiber foods. I lost 30 pounds in six weeks. I sweat through shirts and sheets every night. For two weeks I had to wear a drainage bag that was attached by a tube which entered my stomach. In addition I wore a portable IV backpack that pumped antibiotics into a PICC line that was thread through a vein extending from my elbow to my heart. I was physically encumbered, and mentally anguished. I was consumed by medical concerns and worst case scenarios. I was in pain and afraid. My friend Jeff gave me a sketch book during my first stint in the hospital. I drew a lot. For six weeks before surgery, I traveled to the dark corners of my mind. This illustrated book is a cathartic release and a way to put that dreadful period of growth behind me.