Monday, August 27, 2012

Things I Never Knew...

Those of you who know my story, know that last October it was discovered that I had cancer (Lymphoma)
in my spleen, which I had removed in December.
Miraculously, God has brought me through all of that-without me even having to have treatments thus far!
I am indeed blessed!

However, over the course of the last few weeks, I have found out a lot of information that I never knew!
After the lymphoma was diagnosed, they eventually diagnosed me with colitis, gastritis, and celiac disease.
NOW, they have found that everything I had has been caused by the Celiac Disease!
(Celiac Disease is an intolerance to anything with gluten. Including breads, pasta etc...)

I personally never knew that Celiac was anything to really be concerned about.
I thought that once you stopped consuming the gluten--that it would resolve.
I am finding it that isn't the case at all.

Here are some things I have learned:

  • Celiac disease is an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food.
  • Untreated celiac disease can be life threatening. Celiacs are more likely to be afflicted with problems relating to malabsorption, including osteoporosis, tooth enamel defects, central and peripheral nervous system disease, pancreatic disease, internal hemorrhaging, organ disorders (gall bladder, liver, and spleen), and gynecological disorders. Untreated celiac disease has also been linked an increased risk of certain types of cancer, especially intestinal lymphoma.
  • One in 133 Americans have celiac disease.
  • It is estimated that 95% of celiacs are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with other conditions
  • 6-10 years is the average time a person waits to be correctly diagnosed
  • Celiac disease can lead to a number of other disorders including infertility, reduced bone density, neurological disorders, some cancers, and other autoimmune diseases.
  • There are NO pharmaceutical cures for celiac disease.
  • A 100% gluten-free diet is the only existing treatment for celiac today
  • Other Celiac related problems include: migraine, anxiety, depression, Dermatitis, Down's Syndrome, Liver Disease, Irritability, Lupus, Thyroid, Infertility, Autoimmune diseases (the list is too long to include here)
  •  a nearly 4-fold increased risk of death
(Please note, I am not afraid to die. Want to know why? Click Here)

Accurately diagnosing celiac disease can be quite difficult largely because the symptoms often mimic those of other diseases, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn's disease, intestinal infections, lactose intolerance and depression.
Blood tests are the first step in a diagnosis of celiac disease. A doctor will order one or more of a series of blood tests to measure your body's response to gluten.
In my case the biopsy was the key to finding it.
I am urging you if you feel that you may have Celiac to follow up and get it checked out!
The symptoms I had that sent me looking into the fact that I had a problem were
Anemia, hair loss, and mucous in my stools.

Here is a link to a symptom check list

These days I have more good days than bad-for which I am thankful.
Most days I feel "normal" to some extent. I am sad to
say though though that I have battled with some depression.
I also am having trouble with pains in my hands--don't know why yet.

I am on a strict diet that excludes gluten, as well as most dairy, sugar, & starches.
Because of my intestinal damage, I am following the Gaps diet to heal my gut.
What DO I eat?
I eat soup made from bone broth, that is organic.
I also eat lots of vegetables, nuts, seeds, and some fruit.
I try to eat about 50% raw.

This is a journey that will continue for as long as I live.
I do not know what God has for me yet in this, but I am clinging to Him as we journey this path.

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Monday, August 13, 2012

Company Comes!

 Before summer flew by, my kids wanted some of their friends to come for the weekend--
just to "hang out".
It sure turned out to be such a wonderful time!
Our sweet neighbors opened their pool to us and the kids had a great time swimming,
eating, and having fun...

Such fun!

Someone was ready early and decided to try on her sister's high heels...

Everyone ready for church--one last group pic
(the time went waaayyy too fast!)

Oh, one last pic! Bri did everyone's nails in honor of the Olympics being in London
(all but one, someone fell asleep before hers could be finished--but they look beautiful in blue!)

What a blessing fellowship is!
I know I felt enriched by the time spent with these lovely young ladies!
Especially during our devotional time.
I thank God for friends!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

This and That

July kind of just escaped didn't it?
It flew by for me as these summer months usually do!
Before it's too distant a memory, I wanted to share some of the pics I took (and Bri too)
Our hydrangea bush has been generously giving us flowers all summer long!
It has been a beautiful blessing!

We had the privilege of attending my niece Aspyn's wedding shower-so lovely
to see her and share in her happiness!
Bri gave her this apron
 (it has her new initials embroidered on the front pocket)

We have enjoyed some lovely visit with friends over the summer
This pic is actually from June, but I love these dear folks!
So, I'm slipping it in here too!

This little guy was on one of my plants, I couldn't resist snapping a pic of him
A katydid.

Our Bingley baby got his first haircut
How cute is that!?

Chippy and Bingley just chillin'

My wonderful husband labored hard to bring us
the biggest cantaloupe

These swallowtail caterpillars LOVE my parsley
so I planted lots of extra to share.
God's creatures are so fascinating aren't they?
Whether big or small :)

Summertime Blessing

Our family had a great blessing this summer due to our sweet neighbors...
We did not open our pool this year (first time in 23 years!) and our kids have really missed swimming.
Thankfully, our generous neighbors have allowed our kids to come to their lovely built in pool
on several days that they have been away.
It's like having our own private resort for the day! :)

Everything is decorated so lovely!
(Can you see the lights in the tree?)

It is beautifully landscaped - not a weed in sight!

I love this furniture and comfy pillows!

You can see below that I have made this my fav seat!

There's lots of room for friends
(You'll see that in another post)

Fun touches

I loved this decorated door across saw horses for an added table

Even the cement had little ocean touches in it!
(I loved this little crab)

We've had some very enjoyable times there-due to the kindness of our neighbors!
We are grateful!