April 9, 2015

From sick to not sick...Part 3

Home stretch...then I'll stop talking about intestines. But perhaps I should start talking about my (lack of) parenting skills. Hashtag that's a knife.

Anyway, this is the final installment of my current health journey. Sure, I'll update along the way and if anyone has any preguntas (questions...trying to keep my espaƱol alive) shoot them my way.

Before I close this baby out there are two big things I want to acknowledge - things I have realized are key and that I carry with me while dealing with my current status in life:

1) GRATITUDE: I never (ok, how about hardly ever) let myself get down about anything I'm going through. Despite the pain, the unanswered questions, the long journey both behind and before me I am so grateful for everything I have been blessed with. Life is still. so. good. and this just happens to be my cross. I may cry about it here and there, but I embrace it. And, as Chrissy said in her comment yesterday, there is a big ol' spread waiting for me in heaven. WITH FRENCH FRIES.

2) IT IS NOT SELFISH TO TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. I was smacked in the face with this after my last meeting with my doc. Yes, I take time to workout but it has to be more than that. I now have to take the time to rest, put my feet up (probably while playing Legos or a rousing game of Old Maid), take my meds, and (in some cases) put myself first. I have to realize it's not selfish to say no. It's not selfish to read a book. It's not selfish to have to wait a couple days to respond to emails. It may not be easy but it's not selfish.

OK OK, without further adieu let's close this sucker out...picking up where I left off from yesterday:

**Adrenal Fatigue: this one totally caught me off guard. You can read about it here but pretty much the adrenal glands are responsible for managing stress hormones. If the body is in a constant state of stress for too long (from life, emotions, or even inflammation) the adrenal glands get waaaaay too taxed and they shut down. But you see, I had energy. I slept fine. I don't let myself get stressed out and when I do I can manage it pretty well. But my doc pointed out all the symptoms I did have that related to adrenal fatigue and, well, now it all makes sense. And looking back I guess I did set myself up for this: marathoning, being pregnant (again...), marathoning while pregnant, inflammation from my health issues, all the crazy busy-ness of normal homeschooling life with 4 kids, the fact that I never sit down (EVER), then the weight training and the this and the that and it all adds up to my little adrenals saying NO THANK YOU. 

I'm on a couple different supplements for this one (I'll share at the end) but pretty much I have to take a step back in life and focusing on healing. Rest. Recovery. Which obviously led me to the question: "Doc, can I run marathons???????" Her response: "Um, nooooo. Not right now."

OK, exhale Kristine. EXHALE.

Not only should I not be running marathons at this point, I actually have to back off from what I'm currently doing. I'm used to operating at such a high physical level that to even take a step back is kind of paralyzing. All last week, when I was trying to take "breaks" I would sit down and then become overwhelmed by emotion - paralyzed in the "not doing" - because I have trained myself to just keep chugging along, one foot in front of the other, up this mountain of life. But apparently this mountain is killing me. Like yesterday for example: we were rushing out the door to get to our school class and all the craziness hit me at once. My stomach immediately seized up and I was in physical pain from the stressful episode for a few hours. Not fun.

Sooo, current prescription: cut out anything non-related to the most important things (namely family...), seek out help for the times I do get overwhelmed, take an extra workout rest day during the week (or at least use it for a walk or something), focus on healing my inflammation, back off from bright electronics, and just slow the heck down. Even thinking about cutting back gives me both relief and fear: relief in that I finally have an excuse to let go. And rest. Fear in the thought of "how will it all get done...and how do I say no when more and more tries to get added to life???" 

and lastly (oh, please Lord LASTLY).......

**The Endo: endometriosis to be exact. I was initially diagnosed with this fun stuff right before getting pregnant with the Lola. At least that's what all my symptoms pointed to and was going to do the laparoscopy thing but then, well, got pregnant. It lays dormant while pregnant and nursing but is starting to flare up again. I initially managed the flare ups (before Lola) with diet: no meat, sugar, dairy, grains - which seemed to help a bit. But that was just a band-aid and I'll be spending the next few months trying to figure out a course of action. Hawaiian sun kills this stuff, right??

Alright, here's a big ol' list of everything I'm on. Some of these I take just once, others multiple times a day. Again, this is MY OWN course of action. Check with your doctor before starting anything. Just make sure your supps/meds don't have fillers - the fillers in my Costco prenatal were contributing to the badness.

Probiotics - 100 billion parts per serving: restore gut health/balance.

L-Glutamine: healing the intestinal lining

Vitamin D3: energy, lack of sun in the PNW.

RAW Digestive Enzymes: pre-meal

Papaya enzyme: after meal if needed

Vitamin C: headaches, yeast die off, general health

Eleuthro: Adrenal health

Prenatal: nursing, general health

Slippery Elm and Peplic tea: adrenal health. But this stuff is gross.

Diatomaceous Earth (FOOD GRADE): intestinal health

I also believe in healing through food. This is HUGE and probably even more important than supplements. Organic, natural, REAL food. Grass-fed meats. Free Range eggs. Nothing artificial. No dairy, gluten, soy, corn, legumes. My body can also tell the difference between farmed and wild salmon. I eat a lot of organic fruits and veggies, lean chicken and fish, eggs, coconut and olive oils, plant-based protein powders, and sweet potatoes/squash. Very little grains. It can get boring but whatever. At least I don't get tempted by the twinkies. OOOOO, twinkies. 

OH and if you missed it, here's Part 1 and Part 2 of my journey. But that's all for now. My kitchen is a war zone and Max has some little buddies coming over soon to celebrate the last day that he's FOUR. Because tomorrow he's FIVE. Big kid territory. Whoa.


Unknown said...

These posts have been so helpful! I, too, suffer from a "leaky gut" and have been told by most health professionals (granted, I'm in the Army so the term professional is somewhat of a stretch) that it's either 1) all in my head, or 2) stress related. You're posts are prompting me to seek other opinions in homeopathy (even though my insurance won't cover it because Oklahoma is backwards at best). Thank you for sharing!

janzi said...

What a big boy he will be when he is five!! I have been in awe of all that you do and take medically, and I hope it all sorts out well. You being such a busy busy bee, will find it hard to slow down, and with four kids almost impossible.. but taking time for you is really really essential. My only times alone, was in the bath, and then they hijacked me there, locking the door, so they had my absolute attention, and with five kids doing this, the bath used to get pretty cold ha ha... Hoping that you are having a good week and that next week will be a whole lot better and better goes on getting better** hugs from across the pond..xx

Unknown said...

I know, it;s crazy he is 5! And, yes time for myself and time to slow down is essential. Just trying to convince myself of it over and over!

Unknown said...

Kayley, I totally know what you mean about it "being in the head"....but it's totally not!! I hope you get answers! My naturopath isn't covered under insurance either but I was at a point where I would pay *anything* to feel normal again. Good luck!

Kathleen said...

thank you for sharing! God bless you in your journey and may He continue to heal you.
http://wellnessmama.com/ has been trying to cure her autoimmune disease through diet. her blog might be of interest to you.
Hang in there, and for what it's worth from a stranger, you have a beautiful family!

Unknown said...

Kathleen, thanks for sharing, I'll check it out! And I plan on dong a post soon about healing through food, as well. Thx for stopping by!