Several of you have emailed and asked me for an update on my health and how I am doing with my food allergies. If you are new here or missed it you might want to read these past posts so you know what I am talking about:
It has been a little over 6 months since I discovered I was struggling with 7 major Food Allergies/Intolerances. Needless to say, the past 6 months have been very difficult. I went on an elimination diet at the beginning of the year and eliminated one food allergen out of my diet each week. It took me about 8 weeks before I had eliminated the 7 Foods Gluten, Corn, Soy, Dairy, Peanuts, Tomatoes, and Baker’s Yeast)…so just a few things :)!
I am not going to lie…this was NOT an easy thing for me. I was kind of an emotional wreck…and I was really mad. I kind of had to pull away from the blog here and not share any personal things because I tend to be a very private person (which seems weird seeing as I am a blogger and all LOL). It takes me a while to be able to open up about things because I prefer to wrestle with my own feelings before I feel like I can share them with others.
My body actually went through a sort of detox. I was surprised at how sick I was during that 8 week period. It was an eye opener to me to realize the effects these foods were having on my body without me even realizing it. I was sick with several allergy symptoms which included the following: hives, sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, headaches, the shakes, brain fog, irritability, fatigue, swollen lips and tongue, swelling hands and feet, and severe neck pain and my left pointer finger had some serious arthritis pain and stiffness.
And then a week or so after the detox, sometime in March, I woke up feeling AMAZING! I remember being surprised at how great I felt and realized that it had been a really LONG time since I had felt that way. It dawned on me that I had forgotten what it felt like to feel good…and in essence that made me feel really bad. I felt bad when I realized that I had gradually been getting sicker and sicker without realizing how sick my body had become or how rotten I was really feeling…you just get used to feeling that way. The food I had been eating was poisoning me slowly and surely.
Now, I was not the best eater…and have always enjoyed a few treats here and there, but I always tried to do so in moderation and counteract that with exercise, running and being active outdoors.
Long story short, I made a lot of lifestyle changes and did really great eating a Paleo diet (mainly because it supported what I COULD eat). I switched to eating mostly whole foods and my body felt GREAT! I lost 10 pounds immediately, which was a miracle in and of itself as I have struggled to lose even ONE pound (even while training for a half marathon). But the biggest difference I noticed was feeling like I had this layer of “puffiness” around my entire body, and feeling like it was melting away.
I am gradually making changes with the way my entire family eats…and that is proving to be a little more difficult, but we are making some good changes that they are mostly happy about ;)! I still have days where I don’t feel great…and some days I cheat and eat something on my bad list and I almost always regret it. But it is too hard to be perfect all the time, especially with Summer Vacations.
I still mourn some of my old favorites…like a great piece of Chocolate Cake, or an icy cold Dr. Pepper…but for the most part can deal with it. Another thing I realized was that I am an emotional eater. I didn’t really think that I was before this…but after not being able to eat some of my favorite foods, I realized that I had used them in the past to deal with uncomfortable feelings. So I have had to learn how to face them in a healthier way.
My once, always inflammed, and swollen digestive system is healing now and I am beginning to notice a change in the way my body can metabolize food. I feel like I am on a two steps forward and one step back road. I feel better now more than I feel lousy, and that is a step in the right direction. I feel like I have a lot more energy now too and I was really enjoying and looking forward to training for another half marathon this year. I wanted to see how I felt this time around compared to my other half marathons now that I was eating foods that were not making me so sick. And…I was also turning 40 this year…(which I did back on July 2 ), and I wanted to find myself at a healthier point that I did at 39 last year.
Lo and behold…life threw me another curve ball. Just over 6 weeks ago, I slipped while walking down a really steep…like REALLY steep hill, at my daughter’s soccer game on May 31. My left foot slipped and then folded under me and I landed with all of my weight right on top of it. I tore several ligaments, tendons and a muscle on the top of my foot.
If you follow me on Instagram, you were aware of this as I have shared small updates along the way. I visited a foot specialist who was shocked at the severity of my injury. The hill played a major part in that. Apparently my injury is in the top 10 percent of most severe foot strains. FANTASTIC! I have been in a walking boot for about 5 weeks in and out. And just two weeks ago got rid of the boot for good.
I was so mad at myself. LOL! When I injured my foot, my VERY first thought was…”This is going to mess with my running!” I had also just barely paid for the entry fee for my August 17th Half Marathon. Go figure! Running was also the way I had been dealing with my stress and the fact that I was unable to eat my emotions any more. Like I said…One step forward…and two steps back (or was it two steps forward?…). Either way, at this point…I wouldn’t be taking any steps forward…physically or figuratively (is that even a word?).
Two weeks after the injury, we spent a week on a family vacation in Lake Powell boating. I was given strict instructions by my doctor to get in the water and swim. The cold water and swimming GREATLY strengthened and healed my foot…so much so that at the beginning, I could not move my foot and swim without horrible pain, just to be able to swim by the end of the week with little to no pain.
My doctor was greatly surprised at the amount of healing that had occurred.
Then 5 weeks post injury, my husband and I spent my 4oth birthday in NYC. He had a work conference there…and I tagged along.
Manhattan is a walking city and we walked anywhere from 5-8 miles a day. My poor little foot did amazingly well and I feel like all the walking actually did it some good.
Anyways…that was supposed to be a long story short…but its still pretty long. If you are still with me, I feel like I could finally give you all an update.
I don’t want you to think my life is perfect…cause heaven knows…we are far from that. The truth is, that I just have to process my own feelings before I can type them out for the world to read. I try to keep this little corner of my life (my blog) a positive and upbeat place, as so much on the web can be dark and/or a place to tear others down.
We are enjoying summer, but it always tends to run me a bit ragged. I crave cleanliness, and order and having 5 kids at home…all day long…is not conducive to that…at least at my house. I don’t like to be the cranky momma all day so I try to just deal with it and enjoy having the kids around…but I don’t always do a great job at that…but I am learning!
I hope to keep you updated more here on our family as I have several of you asking and inquiring. I plan on sharing a bit of our two trips so far when I can.
As always, I am so grateful to those of you who are still there…in the shadows. This blog is a big part of who I am and it is mainly in part because of you. I thank you for your kind words and support and I truly enjoying sharing with you.