How Are You Feeling?

“How are you feeling?” I get asked this question at least 3 times a week, and while I’m feeling so much better then I was even a few months ago I thought I would give everyone an update. 

For those that are new to this little blog of mine I’ll quickly catch you up to date…since I was 8 I’ve had high blood pressure and when it became extremely uncontrolled (220/160 all day, everyday) I decided I needed to try a more natural type of dr. I had a lot of daily pain that I thought was just due to the fact that I’m no longer 20 and on top of the pain my fingers would swell up within minutes and I could gain or drop 2-4 pounds every other day for no reason. I walked into Dr Moore’s office in April 2016 expecting that he could do nothing for me or I was expecting to be told I had MS, because I googled my symptoms ūüė¨. What I never expected was to be diagnosed with Lyme.

So here it is 6 months later and my body hasn’t tested positive for Lyme since the end of July! We are now working on getting the parasite completely out of my body and getting my adrenal glands functioning again. 


I now only take 12 pills a day instead of 30 some and I’ve officially lost 30 pounds since I first walked into his office. My fingers don’t swell anymore and when I gain or drop 2+ pounds in a day it’s usually because I’ve ate something I’m intolerant to…which so far we’ve discovered I can’t have chicken, more then 1 fruit a day, sugar, dairy, corn of any kind, gluten and the one that really wrecks havoc inside my body is eggs. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t hungry most of the day or if I loved my new food choices…it’s a constant struggle and one that I have to fight pretty much everyday, but it’s one that I’m determined to win. We’ve also discovered that my blood pressure issues are mostly if not all food related, which on one hand I’m glad nothing else at this time is at least wrong with me, but I love food.

My pain is 100% gone unless I eat foods that I know I shouldn’t but then it’s thankfully not even close to what the pain was like a year ago…unless I go really crazy and then Adam has a little loving talk with me to get me back on track! I’m still dealing with my memory issues and some concentration things but even those are better, I’m praying that they fully return but if not they are manageable. At times I feel like I could go back to nursing school and excel and then I forget random, every day words like fan and dishwasher and decide that being Ms Amy to all my littles is exactly where God wants me! I haven’t been able to read a book and remember anything about it by the time I flip the page but I finally feel like I might be able to remember at least a few pages now so I’m excited to dive into Chip and Joanna Gaines new book once I can find it (because our Walmart doesn’t have it out yet ūüė≠) 

One of my girls has started seeing Dr Moore and we have seen such amazing results for her issues in a month that I’m really excited for what our future holds. At times I can get pretty passionate about treating your body naturally so if you ask, be prepared for me to get excited. I’ve lived in pain and have seen results that I never knew would be possible, so of course I want the same for all of you. I’m also okay if people think I’m crazy for being treated this way and if they want nothing to do with it…just don’t ask me for advice multiple times, never try it and then keep complaining to me ūüėČ. 

Other then those few little issues I’m still working on and still being pretty tired come evening time and the weekends I’m feeling extremely good. I’m excited to see what my future holds and create many more memories with my family in the coming years. 

Much Love,

Amy

Weekly Wednesday Weigh In~Week 1

So I’ve decided to try something new! In hopes to help keep me accountable, be able to give you guys a weekly update on how I’m feeling and to maybe help and encourage others that are struggling with healthy living I thought I would start this post series!

If you are brand new to my blog, welcome! I am glad you are here! For those of you that might be new I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease in April after several years of odd health issues but more recently in the last 6-9 months just pretty much feeling like crap. I’ve always had high blood pressure but since August it has been CRAZY high, like this~

WOWZA!!! This was my "normal" for many weeks this spring!
WOWZA!!! This was my “normal” for many weeks this spring!

Along with my blood pressure issues I was so sore and stiff…this really worried me since I just turned 35 and feel like I have so many more adventures left in me! I also started gaining about a pound a day in December, was always tired and my skin started looking sickly. After countless types of blood pressure meds did nothing for me I knew if I didn’t try a different type of doctor I wouldn’t see another Christmas. A friend of mine suggested I see her more natural doctor and we decided that this appointment would be for the best.

I went in with a list of possible things wrong with me~anywhere from a food allergy to MS to cancer! I never once thought it could be Lyme and was shocked when I tested positive. Since that day in April I have been gluten and dairy free and I also take several detox supplements to help detox my body and rid it of the Lyme.

So now we are caught up to this week! Saturday I had my appointment and I had been having these odd pains on my upper left side. After he adjusted my back and neck I mentioned that I thought I had a rib out. He felt around and could feel nothing but once he got to this one area the pain spiked! I told him that was the place and he informed me that was my pancreas! Umm…so now what do I do? Once again wasn’t expecting that result but honestly I don’t know why. I grew up on sugar and very little exercise and for the last several years knew I was teetering on the pre-diabetic levels. So now I am also on very little to no sugar. I have pretty much cut all sugar out except for fresh fruit.

Remember me mentioning my blood pressure has always been high? Well, you won’t believe this but in 4 days of cutting back on sugar my blood pressure has dropped to this!!!

WOW!!!
WOW!!!

Needless to say I think I have figured out what caused my blood pressure to go crazy! No, I’m not a doctor so this is just what I’ve all learned, but goodness I can’t even tell you how much medicine I have pumped into my body all these years and how much money I have spent to figure out this mystery when here all along it appears to be sugar causing the problem. This also explains why it’s gone up and down by itself. A few times in my adult life I have cut it out for the¬†most part and focused on a clean eating life style and my golly it drops and then I get comfy in that life style and start letting the treats pile on again and before I know it my blood pressure has sky rocketed again.

So this last week I have felt great and then like crap because I am getting all the sugar out of my system and with my blood pressure dropping so quickly I think that hasn’t helped either…not that I’m complaining though! I’m just so happy to have found what looks to be the main cause of my blood pressure issues!!!

So, other then getting rid of sugar I’ve also been able to wear my wedding ring for the 1st time in 9 months or so!!! I would swell horrible once I put it on and getting it on was even questionable each day! I am so happy that I am starting to see the inflammation leave my body!

Perfect Fit!
Perfect Fit!

So, these weekly updates I will just be sharing what I’ve done this past week, some tips that I’ve found to be helpful and maybe a recipe or two that not only is healthy but also tastes great! I will also be doing a vlog on our YouTube channel so if you want to check that out you can find us here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TPluYKyC2cw

I’m not going to focus to much on the scale~God made us ALL beautiful no matter if we are a size 2, 12, or 22. My focus is going to be healthy living for a brighter future. I hope y’all will join me on this adventure I work at kicking Lyme’s behind and we all can work on a healthier tomorrow!

Much Love,

Amy

 

The Struggle

Friends~Can I tell you how bad the food struggle has been the last few days? It’s been bad! Like, I just want to eat a freakin cheeseburger WITH the bun bad! I am a food person~love to make it, eat it and enjoy all the different flavors that explode in my mouth with each bite. This struggle didn’t start right away when I went gluten and dairy free 2 weeks ago, which in fact really surprised me. Then over the weekend it started to whisper to me and by yesterday I had resisted all I could but the daycare breakfast was the final straw and I broke.

The piece of breakfast cake that broke me.
The piece of breakfast cake that broke me.

Oh how wonderful it tasted and then I had another piece and then for lunch I ate bread…real bread and by that afternoon I was in a world of hurt! Not so much my stomach but my neck and shoulders were so sore and it felt like I had a stack of bricks once again sitting on them.

Why is it so hard to continue the path of healthy eating, I was feeling so much better and had dropped a few pounds and then BAM this happens and within a few hours I was miserable and the scale decided to tack on almost 3 pounds overnight! That alone shows why I can’t eat this stuff! My body reacts horribly to it and then turns into inflammation inside of me.

I need to find some quick, healthy food choices for during the day and then start recreating our family favorite recipes into ones that I can also enjoy. It’s not that I don’t know what I should be eating, we have plenty of those foods stocked up on each week, but the problem is when I go to prepare that food somehow my mind is thinking one thing and my hands reach and prepare something completely different! Take today for example, I was going to make a nice large salad and this is what my plate looked like instead~

Best tasting "salad" I've ever had!
Best tasting “salad” I’ve ever had!

Potato chip and all beef hot dog with no nitrates was my “salad” for today! I mean come on, Amy!!! What’s so hard with eating the stinkin salad? Or even chopping up some veggies would have been an improvement over the potato chips!

Okay, I am going to be done with beating myself up over my food choices these last 2 days but I really do need to make better choices! Not just so I can kick Lyme in the behind but also for my future health. I am planning on running another 1/2 marathon one day and I’m pretty sure those people not only practice running but they also eat well to obtain top notch health. I’m sure I’m not the only one that struggles with this so lets lift each other up and encourage one another when it comes to making healthier choices not only for today but for our future.

In case you guys are wondering I had another treatment on Saturday. It went well I guess. My hip was once again popped out of place and he had to increase 2 of my supplements and he then also started me on Vitamin D and Iron. Two things that my body is severely lacking and in much need of. I’m still feeling well and I haven’t seen any change in how I feel with the added supplements in my system. The last 2 days I haven’t had to drag myself out of bed in the mornings which is nice. He didn’t start me on the stimulator so I’m hoping in 2 weeks when I go back I will get to experience that! I asked about cutting other foods out of my diet and he said at this point he wasn’t going to have me cut anything else but after doing some of my own research…which I’m sure Dr’s just love to hear…I’ve found a book called ‘The Lyme Diet’ and it mentions cutting out so much more then just gluten and dairy. That book suggests sugar, caffeine and more that at the moment I can’t remember. I do really think another food or group of foods that I’ve been eating is contributing to my inflammation so I’m at the point of starting to think I need to eliminate more out of my system. Let’s hope that when I do that it goes over better then what I ended up doing yesterday!

I will keep you all updated on how my treatments are going! If you haven’t already please subscribe over on the right hand side so you don’t miss any of my blog posts!

Much Love,

Amy

Lyme Can Cause What?!?!

May is finally here! I love May~spring is here or not to far away and the kids are almost out of school! I love getting to play outside more and the sun stays out longer in the evenings. May also is Lyme Awareness Month so I wanted to share some information that I had no clue about until it became part of my story.

~Lyme is the fastest growing infectious disease in America. It has 10 times more cases then AIDS, SARS, West Nile and Swine Flu combined.

~Lyme disease is often misdiagnosed.

~Ticks are not the only bugs that carry Lyme. They are still the number one carrier but lice, fleas, mosquitos and other blood sucking bugs have been found to carry and transmit Lyme.

~Lyme can be transmitted from person to person. Lyme has been proven to pass through saliva, organ transplant, blood transfusion, placenta to unborn baby and sexually.

Lyme has so many different symptoms and affects each person differently. That’s why it is often diagnosed as something else. The list of symptoms includes: (* shows my symptoms)

Paralysis

Widespread joint and muscle pain*

Severe fatigue*

Headache/rashes

Unexplained fevers

Chills

Nausea

Hair loss*

Swollen glands

Heart palpitations

Depression*

Bowel problems

Interstitial cystits

TMJ

Muscle spasms*

Nerve pain*

Numbness*

Tingling*

Stiffness*

Abdominal pain

Light-headedness*

Tremors

Confusion

Double vision

Sensitivity to light and sound

Anxiey

Allergies

Alzheimer’s

Diabetes

Unexpected weight loss or gain*

That is a huge list and sadly many more symptoms could be added. During my healing process I want to take time to not only educate myself but also share with you what I am learning! I want to bring hope to those that might feel like they won’t ever feel better or to those that might be like me and have no clue that hurting so much at the age of 35 isn’t normal.

What can you do to protect yourself and your family? Wear long sleeves/pants if you go out for a hike, walk in the middle of the path, keep your grass cut short, use bug protection not only on you but also your pets, treat your lawn to help prevent these pesky little things (even if you live in town, they know no boarders and city life doesn’t scare them!) I like a more natural way of living and have chosen a natural doctor for treating my Lyme, no matter what path of treatment you prefer if you think you have Lyme Disease please find a doctor that is knowledgeable with Lyme and talk with them! Lyme left untreated can be deadly.

I walked into an appointment with my new Dr looking for help with my blood pressure and walked out with a diagnosis of Lyme disease~this was something not even on my mind of what could be going on inside of me. I have cried tears of joy, for finally after so many years, having a true diagnosis and I’ve¬†even been excited to know that how I was feeling isn’t normal for my age.¬† While I still have a lot of unknowns I won’t let fear over those steal my joy during my treatment, choosing to have my mind and thoughts find the joy in every day¬†is half the battle¬†in living my life to fullest.¬†Remember friends, no matter what¬†your story is everyone can chose joy!

Much Love,

Amy

 

Transfusion with a Side of Lyme, Please

I was going to share with you this amazing recipe for Root Beer Float Rice Krispy Treats but I miscounted the tablespoons of butter and you have to use a spoon to eat them! Oops! Who knew that 1 extra tablespoon of butter¬†could create such a mess! So I will save that recipe for another time when I can actually get a picture of an amazingly thick and sticky treat that doesn’t fall apart like this:

Looks perfect until you try to pick one up!
Looks perfect until you try to pick one up!

So I want to share a little bit more about my appointment on Tuesday~If you remember I said I was fearful that the Lyme’s wouldn’t be the cause of all my blood pressure issues since I was a small child. Well, sadly I found out that it might not be the cause of it all these years. My heart sank and I didn’t want to believe it or think about it but the more thinking I have done these last few days the more I think it hasn’t been that causing¬†the blood pressure issues¬†or at least not when I was younger. When Dr Moore mentioned how anemic I was I told him I had been since my blood transfusion the day Emma was born and it was almost like a light bulb went off. There is no way to know but he is now wondering if I got the Lyme from the transfusion. All my questions about why I hadn’t become sicker before now if I’ve had¬†Lyme my body for 30+ years now make sense but then there is that fear of why my blood pressure has always been high. However, looking back over my last 15 years all signs point me to thinking that is how I contracted it. When Emma was 7 months old I had gained 20 pounds in 1 month, my hair started falling out like crazy again and I had many symptoms that pointed me towards thyroid issues. After getting tested and everything coming back normal I just chalked it up to stress of a baby that wasn’t sleeping well, me finishing up nursing school and then learning we were pregnant with Elle. Odd but different issues would pop up every now and again for the next 14 years and my blood pressure slowly climbing from normal the second I gave birth to Emma to it being out of control and so high I should be having a stroke since last summer. Who knows, the Lyme could be the reason for all my blood pressure issues these last couple of years and I pray that they are,¬†so for the time being I’m thinking positive that once the Lyme is under control my blood pressure will also go back to normal.

I was curious and researched what the American Red Cross all checks for with donated blood~according to their website they check every donation for Chagas disease, also known as T. cruzi, Hepatitis B and C, HIV types 1 and 2, Human T-Lymphotropic virus (HTLV-I/II), syphilis and West Nile Virus. Lyme isn’t mentioned and most likely wouldn’t have been tested back in January of 2001 when I received my transfusion. I can’t stress enough that I am so very thankful for that transfusion, without it I wouldn’t have probably made it another 24 hours but part of me wonders what it would take to get them to start testing for Lyme in the donated blood? Most insurance companies won’t pay for treating Lyme so I can only imagine the hardship and stress¬†that this could one day put on a family. I am very thankful to have found Dr Moore and I am hopeful that I will be healed one day but I am saddened just thinking that we could be facing a wide spread epidemic of Lyme in the coming years. Between so many people not realizing they have it, either from a misdiagnosis, ignoring their symptoms or from donated blood, I’m wondering what part in fixing this I could be a part of? I will keep you all updated on¬†it if¬†I am able to figure anything out, but for today I feel like my brain is scrambled so I better sign off for now and sorry if this post has made no sense. Real quick though, it is day 3 of my detox supplements and so far other then an upset stomach last night I have felt great! I haven’t even craved any gluten or dairy which is a miracle in itself from God! Tomorrow I do have to increase one of them so we shall see how that goes.

Much Love,

Amy

 

The Treatment Room

So yesterday brought a lot of changes for me~some I can handle perfectly well and others not so well. I headed off to my appointment and realized I am so thankful to work from home! Before I left town I was stuck multiple times in school traffic then heading into the city we were bumper to bumper before I was even 2 miles outside of my town! Let alone the accidents that slowed us down, but I finally made it to my destination with a few minutes to spare.

After checking in I was taken back to a small lab room where they would prick my finger and with the smallest drop of blood they were able to tell so much about what was all going on inside me. I wish I would have thought to take pictures of my cells on the TV but you will have to settle for the picture of the poster instead…maybe the next time they do this I will remember!

IMG_0187

We could see just a few deformed red blood cells, some white ones and then a whole lot of bacteria and sugar floating around in my blood. Some how he could tell that my immune system is pretty much gone~which honestly surprised me because I rarely get sick but I haven’t been able to kick this cough that I’ve had since Christmas!¬†Before I stayed at home with my babies I was a lab tech, so getting to see this was a lot of fun for me! I’m still amazed at everything he could tell from just that one pinpoint drop of blood.

Next we went into the “treatment” room. In there we went over how I’ve been feeling and a few areas that were bothering me. My lower back and neck have really been hurting so he checked those out and discovered that I tweaked my left hip forward and that I have a lot of inflammation build up in my neck. He was able to adjust my hip and did something that hurt horribly on my neck and amazingly today it is only hurting a fraction of what it has been!

Then came the fun stuff~what my treatment plan would start off looking like. From all the lab work my family doctor had sent to him from the past 3 years my new doctor was able to tell that my anemia is from the Lyme, that I have almost no vitamin D, so guess I will be soaking up some rays this summer, my sugar and inflammation levels have steadily inclined over these years and that I HAVE to be 100% dairy and gluten free with the foods I eat. I have went dairy and gluten free in the past and would have always went back to that when feeling horrible but for now I have no choice if I want to get better but to be off of it 100%…he’s hopeful that over time I won’t have to be so strict with this so for that I am happy. Maybe by December I can enjoy a Christmas cookie? He started me on 3 supplements/detox items and then when I go back in 2 weeks will start me on the neck stimulator that will send waves to the Lyme to kill them off. He said with just the supplements he’s had an 80% success rate with healing someone from Lyme but with the stimulator it has bumped that success rate up to 95%…so it is worth making a little drive to his main office at this time!

My Supplements for time being
My Supplements for time being

These 3 bottles cost just under $150 and other then the large bottle of pills smell HORRIBLE!!!! I also have a very easy gag reflex with smells, in fact toothpaste makes me throw up just about everyday. I was able to handle the brown bottle if I mixed the liquid in with a splash of hot tea and then followed that by chugging a kid size cup of warm water. The smaller plastic bottle just smells when I open the lid so at lunch I opened it with my arms stretched out and the smell didn’t get to me. At $150 cost I can’t be throwing this stuff up! So far today I haven’t felt sick, I’m praying that I won’t start as these get built up in my system.

The hardest part of this journey is honestly going to be going 100% gluten and dairy free. I love my sweets, breads and cheese. I was slightly at a loss for what to eat when I woke up but so far I’ve done great and I’m not craving anything…yet. For breakfast I had a wonderful bowl full of bright orange carrot sticks! I am allergic to eggs if they aren’t baked into something so I have a feeling breakfast time might always be a little interesting. For a mid morning snack I had a handful of walnuts and then for lunch I had this colorful plate of yumminess!

IMG_0188I realized I must have thought I was really hungry because I could only eat about half of this and then felt stuffed.

So, that’s been the last 24 hours of my life~anything new with yours?

Much Love,

Amy

The Day I Didn’t Know I Was Waiting For

I’ve always wanted to write a book~When I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease I decided I was going to keep a journal, writing in it every few days and then maybe one day have a publisher interested in it. I thought I would share with you today’s entry…maybe one day you will read it again in my book and maybe this will be the only format it will ever be in. While this isn’t the story I dreamed I would be living it is my life and I want to be grateful for every adventure that God sends me on. If I can be an encouragement to one person then that has made it all worth it.

Much Love,

Amy

Chose JOY~even when your best friend is a heating pad!
Chose JOY~even when your best friend is a heating pad!

Tuesday April 26th, 2016…The 1st day of treatment is finally here! I didn’t realize how much anticipation for this afternoon I would have when I woke up. Excited, nervous, relief and if I’m totally honest somewhat scared. I don’t know much about my treatment except the parts that my friend has shared with me about hers. Four o’clock can’t here fast enough for me to make the first of an unknown number of drives to his office.

The part of me that is excited can’t wait to start to feel better, the funny thing is up until the last couple weeks I didn’t realize that how I felt really wasn’t normal. Heck, I might not even really know what feeling normal really is at this point but it’s gotta be better then this…right??? The nervous part of me keeps thinking about the “what ifs” with treatment, work, finances to pay for this treatment and so on. What if it makes me horribly sick and I can’t work, or what if treatment doesn’t help and I become sicker with time? These are the thoughts that I have to push aside and remind myself that God is in control and not to worry but to chose joy and gratefulness at all times. The part of me that feels relief is excited not to wake up in the middle of the night not able to move my legs without using all of my body strength or not to drop my bottle of shampoo more mornings then not because my hands just don’t get a tight grip on it like they use to. I am relieved to know that I have an answer for these odd things that my body seems to be randomly doing in the early morning hours. Then there’s the part of me that’s scared…what if none of the treatments work, what if I’ve passed this on to my family and one day¬†this disease¬†will rear its ugly head inside their bodies and¬†then for selfish reasons what if I’m not able to live until I’m 100 or even be here long enough to play with grandchildren and enjoyed retired life with Adam? Once again these are thoughts that while they push to the front of my mind on a daily basis I have to learn to find the joy in today, celebrate the small things in life and cherish the time I do have here with my family and friends~if it’s 65 more years, months, weeks or even days.

So today I am choosing JOY and GRATEFULNESS and celebrating that today, Tuesday April 26th is the day that I get to start treatment. None of us are guaranteed to live past this second so we might as well live happily with the story God has given each of us.

When You Just Want To Run Away

IMG_0183

Ever have those days when you just want to pack up and run far, far away from wherever you are? And while I would never actually run away, these days come to haunt me when I least expect them to.¬† Today I think the weight and worry of the last few months have just caught up with me and I just about lost it while making brownies! The fear and worry of wondering how we will pay for this or that while still attacking our debt, the fear and worry of not knowing what treatment for my Lymes Disease will be or how it will react with my body, the fear and worry that something besides the Lyme is wrong with me when the pain gets almost unbearable at times, the fear and worry that I’m somehow in someway messing up my kids or my marriage. It’s days like these that I need to take a step back and take a big deep breath and remind myself that God is in control and fearing or worrying about the “what ifs” or the “wish I would haves” will change nothing except my happiness for today.¬† So for today, while I might cried over a dropped bowl of brownie batter, I will rise up over my fears and worry’s and embrace the beautiful day that God has graced me with.

Much Love,

Amy