Monday, 9 June 2014

it's simply 'galling'

So a couple years back I suffered from infrequent gallstone attacks.  Those hurt lots. But after starting the GAPS diet, I didn't get another one. In two years I haven't had one.  But then I got preggers and couldn't eat GAPS diet food anymore on pain of barfing.  The introduction of other foods (I think in particular ice cream, which I've been craving more than is decently admitted) caused me to awake at 4 in the morning one day with a familiar, burning pain in my upper tum region.  It's a relentless pain that can't be ignored and I couldn't sleep.  So I shuffled out to the living room where Ben was getting ready for work.

Luckily it wasn't a full blown attack (which would have included hyperventilating, vomiting, crawling around on hands and knees and groaning aloud) but it was enough to put me on my guard.  So for a week I was good. I took fresh pressed grape, cucumber, lettuce and apple juice every morning with a squeeze of lemon.  I cut out all meat but fish, and all sources of fat but omega 3's.  I cut out all processed foods and ate mainly salads and fish and sourdough buckwheat bread. I drank lots of water.

I was really sick the first couple of days, much to Owen and Angus' fascination.  Angus would kindly commentate in his cheerful voice as I hung over the sink in misery.

But then I got better, and my gallbladder stopped aching and I stopped getting sick.  I knew in my heart that I should continue the gallbladder/liver-friendly diet for another couple of weeks at least.  But...I'd already eaten so much fish...what about mercury? And I was tired of salads.  I wanted cheese.  And...*gulp* cream.
So I was bad.  And I ate all those things I wanted.  And at first I was ok.  But now I am not again.  My gallbladder hurts and I am sick again.  My children are once more spectators of the churned up food that flows like a rushing river out of my mouth.

*sigh*  back to the salads.

And I leave you with a naked Owen.  He is 5 but still so innocent that he has no notion of nakedness.  The other day he walked quite casually into the dining room of his grandma's house where we were all eating and playing games, without a stitch of clothing on.

He is such a darling though.  I am going to talk about it at his wedding.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Little Boy Blue

This week, preschool was held at Scout Island instead of the CDC.  My kids usually love Scout Island, so I thought it'd be no problem.  But no.  When we got there, it was very stressful. First, both of them were upset at the change in routine.  And then Owen was crying, begging to go, and Angus was crying because he didn't want to go. 

Basically, I ended up leaving Angus there, and strapping Owen into the car. I had been planning on going to the gym while they were at preschool, so I was feeling pretty upset myself at the change in plans. Owen however was quite content to leave and kept insisting he didn't want to stay.  I knew it was because he was planning to watch movies and play on his iPad.  So I told him sternly that if we went home, he wouldn't be doing either.

He cried and cried.  Finally, the thought of going home with a stern and upset mummy, without the balm of iPad and movie, was enough to convince him to stay, and he asked to stay.  So I unstrapped him and raced to catch up to everyone else.

Then I went to the gym, my morning salvaged.  Or so I thought.

But guilt kept sparking in my chest.  I just missed up an opportunity to bond with my son, I realized.  I rarely get one on one time with Owen. Angus is so demanding for my attention, and Owen is not.  And I'd been wanting some bonding time with Owen lately.  But instead, I'd upset him and made him cry was about this time in my thought process that a song began to play.

Not just any song.  The Universe chose that moment to foist Little Boy Blue on me.


Tuesday, 3 June 2014

happy heart

So I started this post two weeks ago. But better late than never!  This is what happened:

I went to pick up Owen from his usual Friday appointment with his Behavioral Interventionist at the CDC here in town.  Angus and I were a little early, so I sat and talked with the B.I, Trish, while Owen and Angus took off playing in the ball pit.
Trish, as usual, had nothing but praise to say about Owen.  "He is so amazing. I was just amazed." Were frequent words out of her mouth.  "He's making so much progress!"  She went on to say that she thinks if we got him assessed, he would lose his diagnosis of autism.

As I drove home, I cried happy tears. I sent up many prayers of gratitude. My heart overfilled with thankfulness.

When I think back on this journey--which isn't over yet--I'm not so confident he'd lose his diagnosis if assessed--but anyways, it was a very hard, frustrating one, especially at first.  When he was 18 months and Angus was born, I remember how he wouldn't respond to his name.  I'd say it ten times, perhaps, and nothing. He was in his own bubble.

It wouldn't have been such a concern, but at 2 yrs, and then at 3, there was still no progress.  He would still not respond to his name, and had virtually no language. He'd learn a word or two, but then lose it a couple weeks later.
(this was despite going to a speech pathologist from age 2 on.  There was no progress in his language for a whole year of speech therapy)

And then there were the irrational fears: stepping on grass and ceiling fans, to name a couple. would scream, cry, shake, cling desperately to mom/dad rather than step on grass or be in the same room as a ceiling fan.   And he would also get very strong attachments to strange things, like washers/bolts, etc. He'd have it clutched in his hand for a week or more.

This story does have a happy ending, thankfully. I've written about it in here already. You all know about how when Owen turned 3 and was formally diagnosed, Ben and I implemented the GAPS diet right away, and how within a month he began to talk and we saw improvements.  And late last year, we also began to implement the protocol found in this book.

We've seen nothing but improvements.  Let me just share a few:

His language. He is always talking now:

He stands up for Angus in Preschool.  Kids play with him. They want to be his partner.  Everyone remarks on what a happy child he is.  The CDC talks about him in their meetings as their great success story.  Everyone loves working with him because he is so bright and cheerful and learns so fast.

And of course, he answers to his name now.

a happy heart resides in my chest.