::pack:: of fixations



life after tragedy. living while grieving. love and triplets.

8.29.2012

Cleanse update etc etc

On my 2nd visit to my new Doctor that I recently found, love, and am so grateful for there was a cookbook in the room I was lead to.  I only had a minute or two to look through it before the Doctor walked in and I knew I had to have one.  First, I love to cook and love a good cookbook even though the going grocery shopping, cooking, and cleaning is now too tiring and basically never happens anymore.  But, it's more than a cookbook, it's chuck full of useful info.  Real information that can really help with a lot of ailments.  Information on what causes the ailments and how you can treat them through food.  It's written by a local woman who was a Mother of 4 (went on to have 5 more(wowza)) and found her health declining.  After each pregnancy her symptoms worsened.  She had chronic headaches, lack of energy, aching pains, abdominal/digestive complaints, emotional stress, and frequently just felt "blah".  

She began searching.  Had exams, blood work, procedures, etc.  She writes, "I acquired several labels for my worsening symptoms: colitis, spastic colon, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic fatigue immune deficiency syndrome and finally, fibromyalgia."  She goes on to explain that the cause of her symptoms were from A LEAKY GUT.  She discovered her symptoms may be linked to an unhealthy gut infested with carb-loving yeasts.  She writes, "As I began researching systemic yeast, I learned that many of the physical complaints we share as a culture and virtually all autoimmune diseases, share a common condition called Leaky Gut Syndrome.  Among these autoimmune diseases and inflammatory states are:  Alzheimers, Arthritis, ADD/Autism, Asthma, AIDS, Cancer, Chronic Fatigue, Crohn's disease, Diabetes, Epilepsy, Fibromyalgia, Heart Disease, Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, Osteoporosis, Schleroderma.  (there are many more)

Leaky Gut Syndrome is a condition where the intestines are more porous and permeable than normal, allowing partially digested food particles to be absorbed directly into the bloodstream.  These particles trigger a series of inflammatory responses from the immune system that can affect any of the body's systems, including the brain.  By healing the cause of the leaky gut and healing the gut itself, these same foods, in their whole and natural state, can be tolerated once again.  And a life free from inflammation, discomfort, and "dis-ease" can be regained."

This is just some of the first page and I knew I had to buy this cookbook which is called, The Feel Good Cookbook, by Jonell West Francis (click here).  I've known about Candida for a very long time but had NO IDEA that it can effect so many things including your mental health, until about 2 years ago.  My old Dr explained this exact thing to me.  He told me to get off Lexapro and how it works on your brain, but the real problem is in your guts.  He had me start taking:

5-HTP: 100mg PM during the 1st week and 200mg PM every night after that.  This helped me feel slightly more calm and I noticed a difference right away.  5-HTP is a drug free, plant derived source of an amino acid that naturally increases the body's level of serotonin, the chemical messenger that affects emotions, behavior, appetite, thought, and sleep.  You can buy it at natural food stores, grocery stores, or Costco, that's where I've found it to be the cheapest.  

Probiotic:  Get a good, high quality one especially in the beginning.  If you've ever been on 1 round of antibiotics you probably have an overgrowth of yeast in your body.  This alone won't heal your gut.  But will help replenish the good bacteria back in.

L-Glutamine or Glutamine powder: 1-3 tsp daily.  This is mentioned in the cookbook also.    this amino acid works to repair the damaged and inflamed enteric epithelial lining of the bowel. This supplement reduces recovery time significantly, restoring ‘health to the navel’ in as little as half the time the body would otherwise require. Glutamine also regulates multiple metabolic processes at the cellular level and is considered a conditionally essential amino acid when the body is in a state of stress or infection.  ...my Dr told me this is good to take everyday and she herself plans on taking it daily for the rest of her life.  The author of the cookbook sells this on her site, or you can buy it at a healthfood store etc.

Back to the cookbook.  First, it's full of really good recipes with real ingredients and real food that isn't expensive.  She has a recipe for a gluten free all purpose flour mix (that I've used and loved so far and it wasn't expensive!).  There is a lot of information about eating dairy-free, sugar-free, and gluten-free.  I really appreciate all of her research and personally find it to be helpful and true.  I think there are so many diets, health books, health theories etc and it's so hard to determine what works for everybody.  But I can personally detest that if your guts ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.  Digestive health is everything to your body.  What you put into it is a lot, but your digestion needs to be optimal.  

Recently Ryan and I did the Yeast Beaters cleanse.  You buy the capsules through her website and they are only about $25 and 1 bottle was enough for both of us.  I've done many-a-cleanses in my day and this one was by far the hardest but in a different way.  She does explain that you may have discomfort during the cleanse.  Also, we, especially I am probably very ..."yeasty" (ooooooh) considering all the antibiotics I was on in and after the hospital.  I just cringe thinking about it.  While I was in the hospital I knew I'd have to whip out the ol' Glutamine etc cause I knew I'd have some crazies coming my way.  We tried to be extra tough during it but we felt nasty!  You build yourself up to 3 capsules AM & PM/day and cut back if you feel too uncomfortable and then build yourself back up again.  I was constantly nauseous, some days my whole body itched uncontrollably (yup if your legs constantly itch that's your yeast ooh, I know), dizzy, headaches, and irritable.  I couldn't wait for those 2 weeks to be over.  I didn't feel miraculous the 1st day I was done but I realized I wasn't being really consistent with the Glutamine and Probiotics and as soon as I started and taking maximum dozes I started changing.  Things are feeling brighter, I haven't cried as much, heartburn/indigestion gone, and my stress levels are beginning to improve.  

Considering the extreme amount of antibiotics that probably caused a ton of yeast flowing through my body giving my gut a leaking syndrome... I think it's safe to say I'm gonna do a couple more rounds.  I know that if I stay consistent I will start to improve even more.  

I was diagnosed with arthritis in my knees about a month ago.  I heard whisperings of me getting arthritis in the future here and there and I expected it.  I just didn't expect it 6 months post-accident, more like 10 years.  It's very painful.  I think I have it in my ankles as well.  This is one of the things that has been really hard for me.  When I tried running it hurt my knees really bad.  My Dr's and PT's want me to do low-impact exercises now.  The bike and elliptical machine just don't give me that feel good runner's high.  I know running would really help me with so many things right now.  I miss it.  I miss Colum.  I miss being pain-free.  I know running could possibly make my arthritis worsen.  When we take Finn to the pool I can point out all the Mom's that run just by looking at their legs.  I miss my old legs.  I watch blonde blue eyed babies splash and play in the water.  Colum loved the water.  Finn's swimming has improved so much and we've been going frequently and I kick my legs and run around in the pool for some low-impact exercise.  Heck, I may join the Seniors in some water aerobics every morning pretty soon.  I miss my feet pounding the pavement and focusing on my breathing during my high impact workouts.  I can't imagine never doing it again.  I think I'm going to try cortisone shots and am praying that it helps.  Maybe if I can rid my body of all this yeast... maybe.



8.22.2012

Forward

I've always wished that I was one of those people that lost weight when they get stressed.  I'd be an itty bitty thing.  I get told often how 'chill' I seem and every time is equally just as surprising as the first.  I'm so far from chill.  I'm more... neurotic, and manic-y.  I've always been easily overwhelmed.  And now that's an understatement.

Everything is getting harder.  It's not getting easier.  Every day brings about a new challenge.  Different issues arise.  New repercussions rearing their ugly head.  More weight on my shoulders.  More bricks on my back.  More panic attacks.  More manic neurosis episodes by Kelly.  More tears.  More how am I gonna do this? 

Probably will have to put down one of our dogs soon.  Major unprofessionalism from the Pharmacy doing something WAY OUT OF LINE and making me feel like something I'm not (it was absolutely horrible and I'm boycotting Taylor Drug in American Fork!!!).  Feeling people watch us, wondering what they are thinking.  Awkward silences when I breakdown into tears for almost no reason.  My physical pain is getting worse not better, I'm walking funnier, which is going to just cause more problems; more pain.  My therapist makes me feel more upset instead of better (getting a new one).  Everywhere we go I think how much Colum would have loved/hated this or that.  I cry.  Everywhere we go.  I cry.  

When we are where people don't know us and people make small talk or ask how old Finn is half the time I tell them about Colum and the other half it takes all I have not to.  I don't need them to know the whole story, I just want them to know that there's another one, another child, another boy who was blonde with blue eyes.  It feels like he's being forgotten or I'm leaving him behind.  Every time I open my mouth it goes from small talk to awkward.  But I can't help it.  I don't need a pity party but I need every one to know that he's supposed to be with us.  Right now he's supposed to be asleep in his bed... but he's not.  It feels like I'm missing a limb.  I wish strangers could see that we are even more broken on the inside than we are on the out.  If only everybody could wear their hearts on their sleeves so the ones that were broken could be treated with extra care when needed.

Every few days though something good happens.  I grasp the good so tightly.  I have to hold on because if it weren't for those little good things I would be in complete darkness.  It's hard because I thought by now it would be getting easier, like somehow I made it through the rough seas and there would be much smoother sailin' ahead.  I was wrong.  This is the rough seas.  Please bare with me.  Thank you so much for all your kind words.  Still trying to look forward but with tears in my eyes.

8.07.2012

Hats

Thank you so much for all your kind comments.  I'm really sorry, I really didn't mean to make people worried.  I already felt I was trying to wear too many hats and it's really hard to explain how overwhelming this whole experience is....it seems more and more hats keep getting piled on.  Just when you think you've gotten used to wearing a new hat all the time something from somewhere adds another hat that just doesn't fit, and maybe a pair of heels that are too big and too tall for you to walk in that have to worn with certain hats.  Before you know it you are sitting on the ground crying surrounded by a bunch of hats and you wonder how you are ever going to get the hang of bearing the weight, managing the stress, and sadness these new hats bring with them.  I wish there was a 10 page book written about exactly how to go about this exact experience, but there's not.  

A few days ago Finn started singing an old familiar song "eh, eh, eh,....".  The tune wasn't exactly right on but I recognized the song he was trying to sing.  There was a Barney that Colum and Finn would watch on Netflix (I believe it's the Halloween one).  I remember the first time this particular song came on and Colum was the first to start singing along, "eh, eh, eh...", he was in his highchair and was kicking his legs with the rhythm (and that boy had rhythm!).  He had the biggest smile on his face and it was the first song I ever heard him sing.  It's the one that goes, "If all the raindrops were lemondrops and gumdrops, oh what a rain that would be.  Standing outside with your mouth opened wide, eh, eh, eh, eh....".  For a few weeks after that, I would sing the first part and the boys would together sing, "eh, eh, eh...", it would make me melt and I was so proud.  I had completely forgotten about it until Finn started singing it the other day.  I think he must've sang it in Preschool and it sparked his memory and he came home and knew it would spark mine also.  The radio in our car (the one that got totaled) stopped working months before the accident and so there were a few songs we would sing.  Colum would always kick his legs in his carseat or bounce up and down if we were at home.  He had just started turning in circles when he died.  Those circles were the most precious things I've ever seen.  It would take him about 2 minutes to do a full circle, he'd sorta rock back and forth over and over while looking at the ceiling.  I remember the first time we spotted him doing one he had that proud, sneaky grin on his happy little face as he danced.  It was adorable and all his own.  He was not meant to leave us so soon.  I've cried a hundred times just about these two memories alone.

Ryan is also struggling with wearing all these new hats.  We are different now.  There are things that are different now physically and it's frustrating being so young yet having to deal with limitations.  Emotionally we are broken.  Mentally we aren't quite ourselves and I think having all of these at the same time is too much.  But everyday we hope to heal and get better.  Just still trying to find and understand our new normal.  We were told one thing and then just told something completely opposite last week regarding the trial.  Apparently "we misunderstood".  It's disturbing and we just want justice.  That's all I can say about it for now.  But, I will say the timing couldn't have been worse while adding a lot of hopelessness to the mix.  Fingers crossed that my silence goes in favor of our case... (long sigh) fingers crossed.

Ryan and I went for an overnight getaway last weekend.  Finn stayed at Aunt Bobbi's and we went to a nearby mountain resort.  It was so nice to be together, relax, and talk.  We had a really nice and much needed break.  It was beautiful and there was great live music playing.  I hope that we can squeeze in a few more fun things before Summer ends.  Around 9pm we went downstairs and sat in the hot tub and there were a lot of families still swimming in the pool.  First we starting missing Finn.  Hearing the laughter and splashes of the other families I started to get that familiar, sad feeling I get a lot these days.  I couldn't quite nail it on the head until that night exactly why being around strangers with their families makes me so deeply sad.  Those families still have that carefree life.  Sure, there is chaos and difficult times but they aren't carrying around this unbearable sadness with them all the time.  They are how we used to be and I long to be free of these new chains of pain and misery.  I envy them, because I know I will never get to be that way again.  I will carry these chains until the day I die.  I will learn how to manage all my new hats.  Which ones will stay, some will disappear un-noticed but these chains will always remain.  And it is terrifying.

On a more positive note my hair is growing back!  I wear it in a bun everyday and I don't think anyone would guess I've lost 85-90% of my hair.  Some of it is 3 inches long, most of it is either about 1.5 inches or at buzz length.  I'm so happy because these short hairs hide my scalp from showing through.  Not sure yet if I'm just going to cut it really short once more is grown out but for now I'm just gonna let it be.   Also, the gluten-free diet is going great.  It really hasn't been hard to do so far and I can feel a huge difference because I don't get blood sugar lows everyday.  We are also starting a cleanse today called a yeast beaters cleanse.  If you can't tell we are in the depths of despair lately and are suffering from major anxiety.  We were on major antibiotics in the hospital which can really mess up your system.  I take a lot of Tylenol PM and still have a ton of trouble sleeping and it is gradually getting worse.  I was told by a Dr after I had Colum, ( I had postpartum anxiety and OCD (yes, it's not just depression)) that 90% of your seratonin levels are created in your guts not in your brain.  Anti-depressants work on your brain.  He put me on a regimen to heal my guts and over a few weeks I was cured (I had been on Lexapro for 6 weeks and literally should have been committed).  This cleanse is very similar to that regimen and I know it will help us a great deal.  It's all natural and kills off the overgrowth of yeast in your body which basically causes all sorts of problems.  I will post more info about this and what I think of this method if anybody is interested in a few weeks.  I'm excited and crossing my fingers it helps improve our joint pain and brighten our moods.  Have a great week!

8.02.2012

bump in the road

Yesterday, we were told some very disturbing news.  The day before something so sad happened and I just wanted Ryan home so I could hold on to him.  Neither of these I can really share... not yet anyways.  It's been a heart wrenching, infuriating, and hard few days.


Over the past week or so a veil has been lifted.  Or maybe it's all the microburst storms that come through the skies above that send excruciating pain throughout my entire body sometimes days before they even come.  Suddenly, I don't feel as strong anymore.  Something inside me was hiding reality in a thin glass box.  A little crack here.  Another crack there.  Over this past week it has slowly shattered.  For both of us.  Like a ticking time bomb.  The pain is too much both physically and emotionally.  There are psychological issues surfacing that can't be overcome no matter how strong we are.  We are terrified.  Why did my baby have to die?  Why does the pain have to hurt so bad?  How can I ever be happy after knowing what I now know?  The dark cloud that follows me around making everything darker.   Little things seem overwhelming to us.  Everything is SO. MUCH. HARDER. NOW.  I guess I really thought it would get easier.  I thought the physical pain would be gone by now.  Perhaps the "I can walk and toilet myself" high is wearing off and I'm not hitting any new milestones.  This might be it.  This might be my new normal.


Truthfully, when I run it hurts my knees so bad, crap is this going to cause another problem.  When I roll over in bed my body throbs.  My heart, oh my heart.  My heart is broken.  My passion is now replaced by fear.  My make up is always tear streaked.  Issues.  I have issues.     


I ask my physical therapists if I should plan on being in pain forever.  "I don't know", they always answer me.  When I was younger I had to help with the family lawn mowing business because my Dad was a school teacher and this helped our family make more money.  I mowed a lot of elderly people's lawns.  90% of them scared the sh!t out of me because they were so mean and awnry.  As I got older I learned that their entire bodies were probably in pain causing them to not really care about how pleasant they seemed.  I'm only 31.  Does this mean by age 40 I'm going to be mean and scare people?  It's definitely a possibility.   We still eat most of our meals in our bed because it's the most comfortable and any chance we have to put our legs up I jump on.  (Gross, I know!)  We got 5 letters from the DMV in the mail today.  One addressed to Colum, one to Finn, 2 to Ryan, and 1 to me.  Ryan opened 1 of them.  They are just letting us know that Thomas R Ainsworth was not insured.  And they'd like us to send them all of our medical statements (Seriously buckets and buckets of them) to them.  After we send them our itemized hospital statements, they will therefore suspend Thomas' driving license.  Bravo DMV, Bravo!  Are you freaking kidding me!  7 months later and you are considering suspending the meth using, "CELL PHONE DROPPING", median jumping asshole's license.  Only after we spend hours sending you copies of our medical statements, let me get my handicap ass right on top of that, because this must be completed within (10) days.  


Finn came into our bedroom while Ryan was at work the other day and was carrying his sippy cup by his teeth.  He grabbed it with his hands while he asked, "Mom remember when Colum used to do this?".  I melted.  The very next day he came in making that clucking sound when you put your tongue to the top of your mouth and said, "I remember Colum always doing this".  I always talk to him about Colum and point out things that remind me of Colum and he always says "oh yeah" or "uh-huh".  I'd given up hope of him initiating a memory he had of his own like this.  It's been over 7 months since he's seen and played with his baby brother and I don't want him to ever forget him.  We are so grateful Finn didn't get badly hurt in the accident.  I'm so glad he still has a chance at a normal life and doesn't have to suffer physical pain.  


Things will get better.  Deep down I know they will, they have to.  Just a little bump in the road.