Sunday, May 7, 2017

My Celiac Symptoms...putting the puzzle pieces together...

Because some of you asked…
The day I went to the ER with left side pain.
Can you see why no one took me seriously?
Once again felt like I was crazy. 
For the last 4 years I have struggled badly with random ailments increasing in intensity. This is what spurred me to keep searching for a root cause despite numerous doctors failing to find anything, and the implication that this was “all in my head”.  Looking back on my life since I entered puberty, I see small signs that perhaps this was an issue for the majority of my adult life and even back in high school. The science is still somewhat vague on the complex subject of gut health and celiac.
I don’t pretend to be a medical professional. I’m just sharing my experiences, hoping that if you have a lot of the same unexplained issues it might point you toward your gut and perhaps healing. From my research online, in books and around talking with people around me I have found, celiac or gut dysfunction can present in many different ways.  I am still learning about this and have experienced a lot of trial and error on my journey. I hope that sharing it can help others get help faster than I did.

Symptoms I have experienced:

1.      Brain fog and dizziness ( not vertigo but feeling continually like I’m buzzed) and unable to focus    without concentrating extremely hard.
2.       My eye wandering and causing me to see double. ( I had this since childhood and it always is worse when I’m tired; but its not a classic “lazy eye” diagnosis; it ebbs and flows but has been very prevalent in the last 4 yrs)
3.       Feeling like my eyesight is failing; esp at night driving but not finding any change in prescription upon examination
4.       Constipation (life long)
5.       Moderate to severe lower back pain (life long)
6.       TMJ
7.       Headaches…a few migraines
8.       Anxiety
9.       Insomnia
10.   Stomach burning; pain; bloating; gas that could clear a room; pain that wouldn’t stop unless I laid out flat on my stomach (has gone on for years; just thought it was normal from eating junky foods; also I would say that stomach pain is like the frog in the pot…it increases gradually and you deal with it day in and day out until you don’t notice it too much; I would’ve said I don’t really have much stomach pain but having just small improvements at times over the last months has shown me I absolutely did!)
11.   Left side, upper under the ribs stabbing and on going for months at a time and then subsiding (this was bad enough to send me to the ER at one point…where they pronounced me fine except for colitis…gave me an antibiotic and sent me on my way; even at this point my GI dr didn’t find it alarming and sent me to my OBGYN assuring me it was a cyst problem)
12.   Weak, flaking nails
13.   Dark circles and puffy eyes even with enough sleep
14.   Chronic fatigue
15.   GERD, acid reflux flares (this feels like there is a lump in my throat and sometimes like its swollen up down there and hard to swallow)
16.   Chronic dry mouth
17.   Fluctuating weight
18.   Leg cramps
19.   Joint aches and pains
20.   Extreme neck and shoulder pain
21.   Irritability
22.   Loneliness and isolation
23.   Panic attacks
24.   Depression (attributed to post partum; major life event: moving)
25.   Loss of interest in activities
26.   Obsessive thinking
27.   Burning in foot joint
28.   Tingling in arms and hands; arm falling asleep often at night
29.   Hemorrhoids (figured that was just from having babies)
30.   Irregular heartbeat
31.   Sinus pressure and increase in seasonal allergies
32.   PCOS: lots of ovarian cyst starting after the birth of my first child; an un-resolving cyst in my  fallopian tube and continuous pain resulted in my having a full hysterectomy in 2015.
33.   Suggestions of insulin resistance
34.   Failure to metabolize estrogen well
35.   Canker sores  in my mouth
36.   Tooth issues: crazy bizarre infections that would not heal and stumped my dentist and oral surgeon
37.   Adrenal fatigue
38.   Off and on cycle of vaginal yeast infections
39.   Uncontrollable carb cravings
40.   Teenage acne that was BAD!
41.   Toe nail infections

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

A Letter to My Body

As I keep dealing with the process of healing from celiac one day at a time, I am actually doing a lot of personal growth too. If you've read my other posts this is pretty obvious. Anyway, I was inspired by my new friend  Kristina at the blog:  MsModify. She wrote a letter to celiac in her first year of dealing with her diagnosis. I was intrigued by this idea. But I realized today that I didn't want to write a letter to celiac, it was actually my own body I needed to write a note to. So I did. I'm sharing it here...because


why the hell not! I'm in this deep with my transparency, I might as well! ha! Maybe it will help someone, somehow. If it doesn't interest you, then don't read it. : ) Hugs to my sisters out there!

May 3, 2017
A Letter to my Body
Dear Body,
Boy, we’ve had a rough go lately! One thing after another and this celiac thing is really hitting us hard. I am constantly amazed at how you were designed and how you keep functioning with so much going wrong in you. I want to tell you I am sorry for treating you so poorly most of our life. I didn’t know what I was doing to us. I didn’t know how you worked and I didn’t ever stop to think about what hurts you. I am sorry for that and I’m really proud of the way you have kept me going all these years and grown and birthed 3 beautiful babies on top of it. You didn’t let me down after the hysterectomy surgery either, you keep on trucking despite your dismal lack of hormones and despite the bizarre foods I have put in you, and despite the big holes in your intestine and lack of villi. I’m sorry it took me so long to arrive at this place of understanding what gluten does to you. Who would of thought you could be so confused, and tricked into hurting your own self!? It’s a mess! I don’t blame you, you didn’t know. I do blame myself for not giving you better food to work with and for starving you on crazy diets just to look a certain way. I didn’t know I was making it so hard for you to function!
Will you forgive me?
Can we start again?
I’d like to help you heal. I’d like for us to form a partnership for the rest of the time we have together. I’ll take care of you and you take care of me and get me around to do all those amazing things God made us to do until it’s time to leave this earth. I’m going to start talking to you in a kinder way. I am going to start trying to do and give you what is the kind and loving thing. I’ll try not to starve you or shove into you things that you don’t like. I won’t punish you with brutal workouts that are too much for you. And I’ll try to find the things you like to put on your skin too.
You were made so amazingly. You are my gift from God…especially made to match my soul and spirit. I’ll stop bad mouthing you and thinking mean things about you. Together we are going to put celiac in remission and rebuild all your functions the best we can. And we are going to trust God to help us, because He made you in the first place and will guide us to all the stuff you need. I love you, Body. Thank you for being mine, despite our challenges, I would not trade you for another.