I’ve created this blog to document my journey to better health, in hopes that it may someday help someone else on a similar journey, who is just as frustrated and confused as I am (was?). You see, I’ve seen no fewer than a dozen doctors over the past year who all tell me the same thing:
“All your labs are normal. You’re in perfect health. You’re probably just tired and stressed from being a new mom.”
This I heard time and time again, inevitably after taking 30 minutes just to tell the nurse all of the symptoms I was experiencing, which are:
- extreme fatigue
- inability to do my job (I’m a professional classical singer–it takes a lot of stamina)
- swelling and tightness in my thyroid region
- gagging feeling
- abdominal pain
- abdominal swelling
- abdominal spasms
- gastrointestinal cramps
- night sweats (I’m talking like waking-up-in-a-puddle drenched)
- shortness of breath
- joint pain
- brain fog–an inability to focus or remember anything
- full body aches, like the flu
- full body hive outbreaks
- sudden onset of sensitivities to many foods, including: poultry, dairy, wheat, bananas, legumes–peanuts, beans, soy, and corn (I can’t eat any of these without experiencing the above symptoms tenfold)
Does that sound like a normal, tired mom to you?
If you said yes, I’m sincerely sorry, because somewhere along the line, some doctors probably told you that this is normal. This is just “how it is.” This is part of aging, part of life, this is the new normal, and “have you ever thought that it could be psychosomatic?” (There’s nothing more depressing than hearing you’re crazy for feeling this way.)
I was so down and out, I was considering a career change to…well, nothing. I was honestly hoping I could just find a way to do nothing, because I had no energy or motivation or hope to do anything.
Then I visited the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, and Dr. William Rollow told me I was not crazy–that I had a condition called Leaky Gut Syndrome, which is currently unrecognized by modern medicine, and that the only treatment is to eliminate all the “reactive” foods for six months to a year (!), take some supplements, and eat some fermented stuff. Then my gut might repair itself.
I had already made a lot of dietary changes based on process of elimination, but I still despaired after this appointment, because I felt like I had already tried to eliminate so many things, and yet symptoms kept popping up. I resolved to eat more fermented foods and switch to better supplements.
Around the same time I went to see Dr. Rollow, this gem of a book was published:
I ordered it, read it, and screamed “That’s it!” no less than two dozen times throughout the book. It annoyingly reads like a sales pitch for some stupid MLM product (“Just wait until I reveal the secret formula to you 200 pages later…”), but this book may be the answer to my prayers. Despite the sales-y tone and the cringeworthy sense of humor, the guy knows what he’s talking about because he is describing me.
Would I believe it if I weren’t personally going through it? Not sure. There are already hundreds of people calling bullshit because “I eat chickpeas and I’m fine!” Yeah, well, some of us can’t eat the damn chickpeas, OK? And we wanna know why. And the reason why is explained in this book.
I have a really good feeling about this one. I’m in, baby–I’m all in. I’m on the journey to change my entire lifestyle–for my career, my husband, my daughter, and, most importantly, myself. I’ll see you at the finish line when I’m 100 years old, arthritis free, thyroid still in tact. And I’ll document my journey here.