Next week, our family is going away. We’re not going on vacation, exactly….We’re going to visit the Mayo Clinic in the States, and I’m going to spend the week seeing a bunch of specialists and going through tests, which I don’t anticipate as being very pleasant, but am still really looking forward to, in a weird kind of a way.
So I had this dilemma – do I get a bunch of blog posts ready that have nothing to do with what we’re actually doing, or do I just be honest, and write a post about health stuff? Obviously, I opted for the health post. For a few reasons: I’m don’t like to keep secrets, it would be kind of hard to disguise the fact that we’re gone for over a week, and I want my blog to be an honest reflection of my life, rather than a place where I can try to fool everybody into thinking that I have the perfect life.
Reasons why I didn’t want to write about it? I absolutely hate it when people think I’m “sickly”. I love it when people care and show interest and concern in my life, but I think that everyone in the town I grew up in thinks of me as the “sickly” one, and if I ever go to see my parents or attend church with them, EVERYONE asks me about my health.
Also, I’ve noticed that people don’t actually want to hear about other people’s health problems. It can be boring, or gross, or both, and sometimes I think that people ask about my health because they’re not sure what else to say. It’s like commenting on the weather. But like I said, I know that there are people who truly care, and I am very grateful for that.
So here’s the deal: If you care about what we’re doing this next week, gladly read on, but if not, skip this post and go read something else. I won’t be offended. (But please don’t think of me as a sickly person!! I don’t like that.)
To sum it all up, my body does not like digesting food. I’ve been tested for a few different things, including Celiac Disease, but doctors have never been able to figure it out exactly. I’ve dealt with it for 12 years, and sometimes things were worse, and sometimes they were better. When we decided to move here to camp, I was going through an incredibly stressful time in my life. I’d just had a miscarriage and was not dealing with it well, and the stress of selling our house, packing everything up, and leaving our friends took it’s toll on me. I noticed that it affected my health significantly, and it was a very difficult time.
Because we really wanted to have a baby, I avoided having any of the very invasive tests done that my doctor suggested at that time, because that would mean putting off getting pregnant. My sister-in-law kept suggesting that I go see her Naturopath doctor, which I thought was kind of ridiculous at first, but after about a year, I figured I might as well, because what did I have to lose?
My first appointment was three hours long. After hearing my whole story, the doctor told me that she was quite sure I had Candida Albicans, but she would have testing done. Turns out that the tests showed she was right, which basically means that I have a yeast infection in my intestines.
Anytime I eat sugar, it feeds the yeast infection. But “sugar” means dairy, flour, very sweet fruits, or anything full of carbs – the body digests all of those things really quickly. That’s bad for a yeast infection, but also bad because they go straight to the blood stream and make my blood sugar levels shoot up, which is why I would feel dizzy and generally yucky sometimes. (I don’t know a lot about medical stuff, by the way, this is just my understanding of what has been told to me.)
So, my naturopath doctor helped me learn what to eat, and how to combine foods so that my body could easier handle the things getting put into it. I feel SO MUCH better than I have in the last 12 years, but I feel that it’s time to take things one step farther. Although I feel a lot better, the Candida is not going away, as it normally would when someone does all of the things I’ve been doing for the last 3 years.
Since we now have our baby, and she isn’t so much of a baby anymore, I’ve been feeling like it’s time to get checked out from top to bottom to find out what the deal is. My naturopath feels that there is still some issue that is undiagnosed, which is keeping my body from healing completely.
All of those tests could be done here, but it would take months and months. Living two hours from the city makes it really hard to get to appointments, and so going away for a week and getting everything done in one shot seems like a good fit for our family right now.
Another difficulty has always been that the doctors I’ve seen try to diagnose me one symptom at a time, and I’ve been sent to this specialist or that, and ended up nowhere. At Mayo, all of the specialists work together to diagnose the body as a whole. Apparently the place is really amazing, so I’m looking forward to seeing what happens.
It’s time for a change in my life. I’m not expecting the doctors at Mayo to give me every answer I’ll ever need, but I feel like it’s a step that I need to take.
Along with that, I’m starting to see that my mental, emotional, and spiritual approach to my health needs to change.
For so long, I saw myself as an unhealthy person, but lately, I’ve been realizing that it needs to stop. I am not sickly, I’m not prevented from living a full, wonderful life. I am able to enjoy my family, to be active, to do everything that I would like to do. While I’m underweight and not as strong as I would like to be, I deal with some physical discomfort on a daily basis, and I’m on a very restricted diet, I do not live the life of a “sick” person. And yet I wouldn’t call myself a fully “healthy” person, either. But “unhealthy” sounds so negative, that I’ve decided to consider myself “unsick”. I’m not sick anymore, and I’m on my way to healthy! Here’s hoping that this next week will help me on that journey.
So chances are, this blog will most likely take on a health theme for the next week! Writing helps me to heal in mental and emotional ways, and I want to share that here. I read once that when we share our stories, healing happens for the person telling, and for the person hearing. As I’ve found many times before, when I’m experiencing something, so often someone else is experiencing it, too.
I’ve also found that any issue usually comes back to my relationship with God and my faith in Him, so chances are good that the “health” issues I work through will have a lot to do with “heart” issues.
I’m looking forward to seeing what will all be unearthed this week! Feel free to “join” our family on our little road trip adventure!