Sunday, April 19, 2015

Why I'm turning into a hippie...

I was born in a generation of immediate gratification. We love our twinkies, ho-hos, and those yummy cream filled cookies that come in a box with a cute little girl name Debbie. YUM!!! Remember those delectable processed caked that were so beautiful and you could get them in a variety box, my favorite were the square ones with the white frosting and chocolate chips. YUM!!! I was greatly influenced and raised for the first 5 years by a generation that cooked everything in butter and just about anything could be solved with a warm cup of ovaltine, some sweet baked goods or a pill. Oh the memories... Most of my best memories are linked to food and mostly processed food. If food and Nana couldn't fix it then medicine could surely help. I'm surprised I'm a alive, when I was very little ages 2-5, I remember asking for medicine and popping tylenol like candy. Jesus must really love me and have purpose for my life because I have no liver damage.
My dad married this lady who over the course of 20 years I consider my mother but on our first family date I remember so clearly that she made me eat my tomatoes! YUCK! I was 5 years old and had rarely touched a vegetable. I blatantly disregarded her healthy eating habits for the majority of my life in favor of more yummy alternatives.
So here I am in the last year of my 20s. I'm heavier than I want to be, I have just finished a book by Lysa Tyrkurst called Made to Crave and a series of events have shaped my life in the past few years. My beloved Nana is gone and I attribute it to her fix it all with a pill attitude. She died of kidney failure with type 2 diabetes. She had so may prescriptions that I can't begin to remember the huge number but it was more than 15. She loved she sweets until the end and always had some on hand to offer me. IT was a wake up call but so painful that it has taken me more than 2 years to process this loss and realize how I could change. I'll be honest, I don't take medicine regularly but if I was offered some kind of pill to fix a problem I would probably take it. Because of what I have seen and lived though, I will think twice. I just have this one body and I need it for a while.
I am learning that God put everything into nature that can help me and prevent a lot of the need for medical intervention. My healthy food boundaries are not restrictive but merely a barrier meant to keep me safe and healthy. I am all for taking meds if I need them but I am learning that those needs will be less if I keep moving and put healthy things into my body.
3 years ago I saw some documentary footage + Oprah that scarred me for life and made me research and be more conscious about the foods we have and how much hormones and antibiotics are in our food. Being pretty humble in the finance department I can't afford the hormone free grass feed beef that I would like to buy for my family but one small change we made was to get hormone free milk. I subscribed to our local delivery service which gives us natural milk (not organic- that tastes funny to me) but it is hormone and antibiotic free and pleasing to me. It was a simple more affordable option for a product that we consume a lot of. The fun side of that service is that it gets delivered in there nostalgic glass bottles that make my heart happy in the missing Nana department. The sell by labels are different too which diffuses a morning battle I have with one of my kiddos who only thinks in black and white. It's really a win-win-win scenario.

How does this make me a hippie?

 Another series of events have been unfolding along with my personal revelations. My son is affected by ADHD and I am in the process of navigating the waiting list with the neuropsych to test for other conditions namely Asperger's syndrome or according to the DSM V, the highest functioning end of the Autism spectrum. (Asperger's simply doesn't have the same definition or diagnosis that it used to) Recently, we were given a generous sample of essential oils blended together into something called Jeddy's blend. It was made by a lady whose son has autism and adhd, she wanted something natural to help him. I have never been a believer in natural remedies, I see that they can work and I question the placebo effect. Something seems to make sense but I just have never seen the practical effective application. Well, I was just about at my wit's end with my sweet oldest child and I figured this pil sample surely wouldn't do any harm so let's give it a try. IT CHANGED OUR LIVES!!!! I subbed it out with olive oil just to see if it was placebo effect and let me tell you olive oil does not calm a crazy child. I don't completely understand the science behind the oil and how it enters the system and how it changes behavior but I know that it works, it is absorbed through the skin best in places where there are nerve endings linked to the systems you want to affect. I jumped on to the oil bandwagon with both feet and have found various blends helpful for myself with my skin problems, my own ADHD, and those pesky hormones. It also works with sore muscles, and headaches. YAY for less chemical intervention!
Fast forward and switch kids.
I have a wonderful middle child, he's pretty typical and simply reaps the benefits of our trials and experience because by default when we makes these changes he is positively affected.
I also have a sweet little girl, she's almost 4 and she is fabulous. She does have her challenges though; she is affected by cerebral palsy and had some mild/moderate delays in all areas. Cerebral palsy is a brain injury, a stroke specifically which occurred inutero, during, or shortly after birth. I believe her stroke was inutero around month 8 and maybe related to the RSV I battled for a couple of months. Anyway, She has low tone which is a bit atypical for CP but still is challenging. Well she recently had an odd encounter with some Jello. It was red jello from the store deli. Anywhere on her skin that it touched was raised and red and itchy, she said she felt funny and her tummy hurt. I gave her some benedryl and called the doc. Apparently this is common because he knew the Jello was red with out me telling him and apparently it can happen anytime. huh... who knew? No more red food dye for our sweet girl.
As I was researching this whole red food dye allergy I learned some things. The FDA has investigated Red 40 for behavior problems in children. It is increasingly more common to have reactions to it as the consumption increases. it has been linked to cancer in mice but no one has done a study for humans that I have seen. Apparently it comes from a beetle and because of this it is considered natural and highly unregulated and this accounts for the reason that you can go your whole life and suddenly have a problem, different concentrations and formulas do different things but they aren't tracked because they're natural. -oh by the way it's in a LOT of stuff! Given we have a child with behavior issues and another who has a sensitivity to red dye, we have cut out food dye.

So here I am, a girl who loved her processed food and those delicious cakes that never expire. I'm learning to love veggies and eat far less carbs and almost no simple sugar, I use alternative health treatments and have decreased our dependence synthetic medicine, and we don't eat food dye. This from my background makes me think I might be turning into one of those health crazed hippie natural people. It wasn't an overnight transformation; I have seen people I love around me make these changes, those seeds have been planted for years. I am hoping these changes now will nourish my children and plant better seeds for them in their future.

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