Friday, June 20, 2014

Step one of the Wahls Diet

We started the first step of the Wahls Diet at the beginning of the week but my computer was acting silly so I was not able to use it and blog.  So, here are some pictures of this week. 

I washed all the fruits and vegetables I needed for the week.

Beef with Spicy Red Pepper Saute - Yummy!

Curried Chicken and Grilled Coleslaw - Also yummy!

We have obviously eaten other meals BUT I forgot to take pictures of them.  : (  So far this has been easy to adapt and tolerated by the kiddos!  : )

Friday, June 13, 2014

Pressing On

Fears and failures.  Those two things can really trip me up.  I let my past failures dictate my today.  I let the fear of future failures dictate my tomorrow.  But this should not be so.  I have the power of the Holy Spirit in me.  That is some pretty powerful stuff!  : )  In my quiet time this morning God just showed me how he wants me to overcome my fears and failures and press on.  Not in my own strength, but by using His Spirit and His Word and to speak His truths over me and my family. 

One fear is with my children.  I fear that because of my past failures I have wrecked their future.  First of all, I really don't have that type of power! : )  Also, what does God's word really say?  "The Lord your God will change your heart and the hearts of all your descendants, so that you will love him with all your heart and soul and that you may live!"  (Deut. 30:6)  He also tells us he has plans for us to give us hope and a future, and that he can rebuild what has been destroyed.  My children are in the Lord's hands and nothing and no one can snatch them away!  I was talking to my oldest daughter and apologizing that I had made some mistakes that I thought effected her and her siblings and she stops me and says, "Mom, I think you are amazing, if you didn't make those mistakes then one of us kids probably would.  We get to see what not to do.  It's either you or us mom."  Well if that's the case then I am glad it was me!!  : )

I also fear about my health.  What if I can't make the changes necessary?  Am I then setting my family up for future disease?  Why didn't I take better care of myself?  How much more pain is in my future?  Then I remember the complete and total blessing MS has been to my life.  I would want it again.  Because of MS I am able to learn about nutrition and our bodies and give my children knowledge they would have never had before.  If/when pain comes on stronger I know God will be all the strength I need.  "Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you.  He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you."  (Deut 31:8)

I think Paul sums it up in Phil 3:12-14, "Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been make perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.  Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.  But one thing I do:  Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Phase 1

We are going to start making some changes in our family.  I know some of these will be met with resistance and might be harder for my children since they are older...BUT I know that this is important and worth the effort.  What I am learning and applying with not only help my children but my grandchildren as well.  It is about making changes that positively effect future generations.  I will effect them in some way...either good or bad...ever decision I make does, so I want to make good choices to help them not hurt them. 

I listened to this great podcast with "Katie the Wellness Mama" and decided to use some of her ideas in my family.  Right now, in this post, the changes I am talking about is "how" we eat our food.  We are going to start implement Phase 1.  Here is what our phase 1 is going to look like:

1.  We will eat at least breakfast and dinner together.  (Since it is summer most of us with have lunch together as well.)

2.  We will have ONE meal and that meal will be served family style.  (Food in center of table.)  That is all the food that will be offered.

3.  Our motto is try, try again.  They only have to try one bite of all that is offered and then can eat what they prefer BUT each time a food is offered, even if they didn't like it last time, they will try it again.

4.  No negative comments about any food served. 

5.  Food is fuel.  It is not comfort, a reward, or used as discipline.  Our kids are going to learn what foods help or hurt their body so that they can make wise choices when we are not around.

I know this all seems like a no brainer, but this is where we are starting.  I want to reach their heart and minds as we are nurturing their bodies with all the great food God has given us. 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Getting focused

I am reading a book right now called "The Wahls Protocol."  I have mentioned Dr. Wahls many times and if you haven't heard of her I highly recommend you do.  She is very knowledgeable and encouraging.  In this book she asks that you journal your recovery (from MS or any disease) and use it as a reminder of where you are right now (symptoms, pain, etc) so that you can see how far you have come.  I thought my blog is the perfect place for that!  I want to use this to remind myself of God's goodness and His healing in my life.  So I do hope as I learn and as I heal it will be an encouragement and a challenge to everyone else.  : )

To get started I need to list my current symptoms and just where I am right now:

We moved to Texas at the end of April and I think that stress had a major impact on my health.  I am currently on two medications for pain but will be off one of them completely in two weeks.  My pain in my feet has increased (only slightly) since and that is encouraging to me.  I have switched from Tysabri to Techfidera.  I have had side effects from Techfidera that include nausea and flushing.  The flushing feels like someone has rubbed insulation all over my body, so it burns and stings.  This is happening mostly in my face and sometimes in my arms and legs.  This happens on and off throughout the day and lasts about an hour.  Because of the stress of the move etc, my lesion on my spinal cord that effected my hands flared up again.  My hands are in pain most of the day, making it hard to type or do my daughters' hair or even wring out a rag.  They burn and feel weak and sometimes go numb.  Because of this flare up I was given an oral steroid instead of the steroid infusions to see if it would work better.  The pills come in 4mg tablets but I had to take 80mg twice a day for three that was 20 pills each time!  The side effects were nasty.  It felt like someone was punching me in the back right where my kidneys were for those three days.  I couldn't sleep and I spent one night with more nausea than I had ever felt before in my life.  Sorry for how gross this is going to sound...BUT it also caused me to have some vaginal bleeding (mostly blood clots) for those three days.  I am also weak and shaky but not sure what is causing that.  This has all been happening over the past week.  I am praising God that I was able to sleep the past two nights!  I also feel bruised around my neck and shoulders.  Ok, there it is!!!  Believe me when I say this is NOT complaining or whining....I need to list my symptoms as I get started so that I can remember how well I am going to be doing in the future!  : )

I KNOW without a doubt God is using this for good in my life.  He can and will heal me in His timing and use this time in amazing ways for my children.  I trust in His goodness and His wisdom.  If he has allowed this in my life then I will praise Him for it and look with great expectations on what is to come.  I pray for all those that are hurting and read this blog that you too will know God's love and provision and protection.  "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give your rest."  Matthew 11:28

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

When you are hurting....

I really want this blog to not only be for those with MS or for the family of those with MS.  Of course this is a big part of my blog and my life but not the main part.  The main part of my life is my relationship with Jesus.  After that is my husband, my children, my parents, the rest of my family, etc...  MS does affect these relationships but not as much as it used to.  Why?  Because of my hope!  Hope that I will be healed, and if not healed then my hope in Christ to get me through.  Everyone has hurts, everyone needs hope and encouragement, everyone needs ideas or tips or advice to get them started in the right direction, and everyone needs grace when the mess up.  On Mother's Day I came up with this saying....  "I never fail, I just leave room for improvement!" 

I will be having a lot of information about food and your health.  I will most likely have a separate "tab" so that info will be in one spot to come back to.  Be ready to be challenged in this area of food but also be ready to feel GREAT!!!

But first I want to share some great tips I wrote down from a sermon I listened to this morning. 

When you are hurting (physically, mentally, something done to you, etc.):

1.  Don't use that as an excuse for lack of self-control. whatever you want, say whatever you want, behave however you get the idea.  If you are talking to your children all nasty because you don't feel well and then someone you want to impress (friend, pastor, whoever) comes to your door you will quickly straighten up.  If you have the self-control then, then you can have it anytime!  : )

2.  Don't withdraw or isolated yourself from others, sulk, or feel sorry for yourself.  You can't be pitiful and powerful at the same time.  Let your life be an example to others.  Becoming upset because you feel alone only adds to your hurt.

3.  Don't believe that God is punishing you for your past sins.  Of course there are natural consequences for speed and you have to pay a fine, or you steal and you have to go to jail for a certain amount of time.  But when you confess your sins, God forgives you and forgets.  He is not sitting around with a list of all you have done wrong and punishing you over and over again!

4.  Don't give up and think there is no way out.  Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6)....if you are lost then start there to find your way.

5.  Keep your commitments and your word.  There are days that something does happen to keep us from fulfilling our commitment but even then call and don't just not show up.  But truthfully many times we just don't "feel" like it or it isn't "easy" for us and we decide to stay home instead.  God always keeps His promises and for those of us who are Christians, we are to be an example of Him to others.  For those who are not one forced you to say yes or volunteer so keep your promises as well!  : )

6.  Fight against the hurt and do something good for someone else.  There is such a healing power when we take the focus off ourselves and help someone else. 

I know that life can be hard and we do need someone we can vent to and lean on, but it is not good to stay there....and btw....all that I blog about I am saying right back at myself because I need to remember this as well!!  : ) 

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Big Move!

So we made the move back to Texas last week!  : )  MANY  factors went into this decision.  One major reason was my MS.  We always knew that we wanted to move back here once we retired...that we wanted to "finish" here.  We thought it would be after the kids all graduated high school.  A little back husband and I were both in the Marine Corps (me for four years and my husband for 8) and have moved 10 times since we have been married and each of us moved 4 times before that!!!!  I have been a stay at home mom since I have been out of the Corps and my husband has a job that is very mobile.  We have always LOVED moving and were living in Iowa by my parents for the last three years.  We thought we would stay there (we do have choices with my husband's job), but that all changed once I was diagnosed. 

One of the hardest things for me about living in Iowa was the winter.  Shoes really really hurt my feet.  The first winter of MS I wore nothing but flip flops....that didn't turn out well for my feet either!  I got infections in my toe nails and a few times I thought I got frost bite!  : )  Sooooo my doctor told me not to do that again this past winter! heh heh  It was one of the coldest and longest winters Iowa had seen in years.  Schools were closed because of cold NOT snow!  Needless to say I had to wear shoes a lot.  This made my feet hurt so bad that I ended up not leaving my house unless it was completely necessary.  I am very social so that was mentally and emotionally very difficult.  : (

Matt and I started thinking that maybe we needed to move back to Texas earlier that we had planned.  We started praying about it and God just opened every door and FAST!  We got the first job Matt inquired about and sold our house in one day!  : )  The move itself has been exhausting!  With the help of friends and family we packed ourselves up, drove two moving trucks and one van 1150 miles, and are in the process now of unpacking...all in the last two weeks!  : ) 

It is great to be back here and to feel "settled."  We do not plan/want to move again....even though my family thinks we will based on all our other moves!  heh heh  Another little side note...we lived in Texas about 2 1/2 years before me moved to Iowa.  We loved Texas then too, but really felt God calling us to move back around family.  We are so glad we did!  We got to be a home for my brother when he needed it, Matt was able to "officiate" my uncle's funeral, and my children were able to bond with grandparents and spend the night at their house at least once a week.  : ) 

I am going to have to make some big medical decisions because my neurologist here gave me some ideas that I think are valid.....I will blog more about that later....

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

My words

My words really matter!  If I SAY I am tired well then I will probably BE tired!  It isn't that I have to be "fake" but I don't need to complain and express every single issue at the moment.  Philippians 2:14-15 "Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe..."  My mouth needs to be glorifying God.  : )

Why this is so convicting to me is that I have started new infusions.  I am taking a MS medicine called Tysabri.  I have had 4 infusions now.  I have them every 4 weeks.  And.....they cause me to be tired.  I think that for the past couple of months that is all I have been talking tired I am.  My new approach is glorify the Lord and take the focus off me!  : )

Saturday, January 11, 2014

My Life Lessons

I am going to write the different things I am learning and/or doing in my life.  Some may be about MS and some won't.  As I have been reminded again lately....I am not defined by my MS.  It is not who I am!  : )  Some things I write might be from what God is teaching me during my quiet times, my devotional book, or a recent sermon.  If ya'll ever want to know more about what I am learning just message me and I will give you exactly where it is from so you can dig deeper on your own.

Today my lesson is on jealousy and grace.  I am jealous that other people I know are not sick.  That sounds awful but it is true.  Right now I am looking for easy and that "seems" easier.  BUT God isn't letting me stay there.  I am learning that His Grace will be there for me and that I need to be on my knees more asking Him to change my heart and my mind.  I need eyes to see past this and know that He is working on my behalf right now. 

(1 Peter 5:10)  I am thankful that through this suffering (some caused by my own actions) that God will form me into who I am supposed to be!