After four decades of life, I realized this past year, that I was ready to shine my light. We all have it. It’s that drive or spirit inside of us that throws us into our passions and hobbies. What we dream about during the day. And what we advocate for in our spare time.
It has taken every bit of my past experiences to get me to this place. Right here. Right now.
My Natural Health Journey
As a child, I remember I was always sick and constantly missed school. Most kids would rejoice at that predicament, but it really wasn’t fun. Every month I would catch some “bug” that seemed to stay with me forever.
During my 20’s and 30’s, I continued to struggle with monthly illness. Then, to add a little more fun, in my 30’s I dealt with aches and pains in my joints, clicking/popping knees, and constant fatigue (that was often labeled as “lazy”).
What I didn’t know back then is that I was dealing with chronic illness and inflammation.
In addition to the pain, I struggled to understand why I wasn’t loosing weight even though I went to the gym and ate “healthy.” At that point, I figured being bloated and gassy all day, every day was just normal.
Nope, not normal!
But they say, “that’s just what happens as you get older.” Sure, our bodies slow down a little, however, chronic pain, gas, bloating and inflammation are not part of the aging process.
Finding My Intuition
The big wake-up call for me occurred once my first child was born. Baby #1 was fussy (and I’m not talking new baby fussy). This baby would scream at night for hours on end. It was awful.
Soon after, we determined that our baby had what many parenting books refer to as colic. But really, let me be honest here. Now that we know better, colic is basically this nebulous term that is thrown out there for desperate parents so they have something they can tell their friends and family. “Oh, don’t worry Grandma, Billy’s tummy always gurgles and he is always fussy. He’s just a colicky baby.”
Then, when my son was just three months old, he was diagnosed with reflux along with lots of ear infections and rashes in places where you do not want rashes. What we didn’t know then, that our pediatrician also didn’t know, is that these symptoms can be caused by undiagnosed food sensitivities. Oh, and that colic–also undiagnosed food sensitivities.
Our pediatrician’s solutions were pills, cortisone creams, and ear surgery.
Instead, my urge was to figure out what is CAUSING these ailments? I mean, there has to be a cause, right?
Slowly, I began to tune into to my intuition, devoured natural baby books and sought out health care providers that focused on finding a cause and valued prevention.
Imagine our immense relief when several months later we found a wonderful alternative practitioner and finally diagnosed my son’s food sensitivities! Wouldn’t you know, his body was telling him, and us, exactly what it didn’t want. We just had to tune into that special message.
Everything else that Western Medicine was telling us to do up until that time (Zantac, cortisone creams, tubes in his ears), simply did not feel right to me.
My intuition was telling me to seek out the root of the problem so it could be prevented. And thus my journey into holistic health began!
My Chronic Illness Story
Once we understood the connection with my son’s health challenges and his food sensitivities, I began to analyze my own health challenges. If my son was sensitive to wheat, dairy and soy and those were culprits of his distended tummy, perhaps those didn’t agree with my tummy either? As it turns out, those were absolutely part of my problem!
But health is like an onion. It has many, many layers and it’s certainly not “one size fits all!”
Finally, in my 40’s I found a team of practitioners who dove deep into my health history, connected ALL of the dots, and made some important diagnoses. With the help of author and practitioner, Jessica Flanigan, and functional Doctor Joe Smith of Atlas Health, I was finally diagnosed with an autoimmune disease called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Yes, I say “finally” because I fought hard to get to the root of what my body was experiencing. In addition, they discovered an iron loading blood disorder called Hemachromatosis.
Yep, it was a tad overwhelming at first. But then I realized… I have trained for this. I’m sure that sounds absolutely crazy, but for the past 20+ years, I’ve learned more than I could fathom about how food and toxins work directly with and against our bodies.
Through my experiences, there is one thing I know for sure. There is no magic bullet or quick-fix diets. Trust me, I’ve looked. Instead, the key is to tap into your intuition and your own awareness because our bodies tell us a lot. It’s a process and I’m here to help.
What Makes My Heart Sing
Yes, I have a chronic illness, but it doesn’t define me. Here are some fun facts about what fills me with joy…
- Speed – I’m an adrenaline seeker for speed. I don’t like heights, however, which is one reason why my dream to be an Air Force fighter pilot never worked out. Darn!
- Nature – My soul was drawn to Colorado from my hometown of Columbus, Ohio. The mountain air, fragrant pines, and white capped mountains feed my spirit.
- Big fluffy dogs (and all animals really!) – Especially our sweet Alaskan Malamute I call Keiva the Diva.
- Public speaking – Crazy, huh? But I just love it and jump at the chance to speak in front of others.
- Food allergies – My daughter has a corn allergy, and although this also makes my heart cry at times, I know my purpose and passion is to help others on this journey.
Peace and Love,