Fighting My Health Battle – Part 2

Fighting My Health Battle Part 2 #hypothyroisim #adrenalfatigue

Thanks for hanging in there with me for the second part of my story. If you missed part 1, you can read it here.

After 2 years of normal blood work, feeling rundown, and dealing with a myriad of symptoms I was desperate but did not know where to turn. On her way to work, a sweet friend noticed a billboard for a physician who specialized in holistic medicine and hormones. Passing the information on to me, she encouraged me to call. I had nothing left to lose, so I made an appointment.

Surprising and relieving is the best way I can describe the appointment. I finally found a medical doctor who sat down and spoke with me face to face without rushing to the next patient. She requested I fill out a packet of information on my history, symptoms, physical and spiritual wellness. She went through every word with me asking questions and actively listening.

Mentioning some suspicions she had she first addressed some lifestyle changes I needed to make regardless of any diagnosis she might make. Then she began to address my symptoms. The doctor prescribed a regimen of natural supplements to address some small vitamin deficiencies most people have. Then over the course of several appointments she administered tests.

Some of the results were no surprise to me. I had suspected for a long time that I had adrenal fatigue. I am the type of person that pushes my mind and my body to the uttermost limits of its ability. I go, go, go, all of the time, functioning on very little sleep, taking on way too many responsibilities, and regretfully rarely saying no.

I also suspected I might have hypothyroidism connected to the adrenal dysfunction. The thyroid controls hormones. Hormonal imbalances can affect heart rate and rhythm, weight loss, ability sleep, handle stress, and multiple other functions.

What I didn’t know was that I have the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase gene mutation, which affects the body’s ability to absorb B12 and folate. It causes one to be more likely to have anxiety and increases risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer, and prohibits the body from being able to detox from toxins in food and the environment.

In a nutshell, all this time I had these weird sensations of something filling up to the brim and then pouring over into anxiety or even a tachycardic episode. Foods that never bothered me before began to give me all sorts of digestive problems and give me an anxious feeling in my stomach. All of the symptoms I was having are connected. The thyroid is connected to the adrenals which are connected to hormones which affect every system in the body.

Feeling relieved, I finally had answers to so many questions and prayers. However, that was just the beginning of my journey. I had a long road of lifestyle changes ahead of me.

  • I still spend time in prayer and reading my Bible each morning, but now I incorporate more praise, worship, and Christian meditation focusing on connecting to and listening to God while I take time to do deep breathing to de-stress.
  • I take about a dozen herbs, vitamins, and natural supplements each day, and I have always hated taking anything resembling medicine.
  • I no longer eat cheat meals or foods. I rarely did anyway, but those few times when I ate gluten or sugar before resulted in anxiety, illness, fatigue, and a buildup of toxins in my system.
  • I take a detox bath at least twice a week to rid my body of toxins.
  • I drink more water to flush out toxins.
  • I am much more intentional about how I spend my time. I have learned I cannot do everything everyone expects or asks of me. I prioritized and removed some tasks from my busy schedule. I’ve learned to say no.
  • I am much more in tune with my body and how it responds to certain foods or stress.
  • I’ve learned how detrimental it can be to tax your body with high impact exercise. I still exercise 3-4 times a week, but it’s in a gentle form. I go for a low impact walk or do Christian yoga, spending that time concentrating more on my relationship with God than my physical body.
  • I’ve come to realize how I react to things affects my health. Instead of reacting negatively, I purpose to react positively and to not allow my stress level explode as it did before.
  • I’ve learned that many of the cleaning products and beauty products I was using contain toxins that are dangerous for everyone, but especially for those who do not naturally detox. I have begun slowly, but surely changing from conventional products to natural ones.
  • Most importantly, I’ve begun teaching my children these techniques so they can avoid becoming victims of their genetics.
  • I began studying healing in the Bible and books by Christian authors, and learned how physical healing is connected to your spirit. One book I highly recommend is Switch On Your Brain by Dr. Caroline Leaf.

This is not the end of my battle story or my journey. Every day is a choice to choose to live better spiritually and physically so I can serve my Heavenly Father, my family, my community, and myself better. I’m grateful The Lord has helped me with the opportunity to share this journey with all of you. After researching, I realized I am not alone. There are so many of you out there with the same or similar experiences.

My prayer is that my journey will encourage you. No one wants to go through these struggles, but if I’m going to endure something I want it to count. I want it to be an encouragement or even help with prevention in some way.

The enemy would love nothing better than to see us discouraged and debilitated. I’m not going to let that happen in my life. I want my children to have a better example. Let’s rally together, encourage one another, and heal our bodies and spirits.

Fighting My Health Battle

fighting my health battle - health, encouragement ruckusandrubies.comWell, I’m back!! With the exception of a few posts here and there, I’ve been taking a long vacation from the blog. It wasn’t something I wanted to do, but something I had to do. For the past few years, I’ve been fighting a small battle. It actually probably began a long time before that, but I wasn’t aware. At a time when my family has needed me most to help contribute financially and be present during the crucial teen and adult years, I have been encountering health issues. The blog hasn’t been a “best yes” for me as I had to limit my responsibilities and prioritize.

For a few years I had been having multiple health symptoms all at once on a regular basis each month. Most of these symptoms seemed to hit around the same time each month and lasted anywhere from a day to a week. Plagued with indigestion and digestive issues, migraines, fatigue, palpitations, tachycardia, pain in my chest and left rib cage around to my mid back, hair loss, inability to exercise, irritability, emotions from one extreme to the next, back pain, achy joints, dry skin, sleeplessness, and more, I felt like my body was falling apart. I knew I was over 40, but it was more than just age. I wasn’t able to serve God, my family, my church family or friends like I used to. I had been clean eating and taking care of myself for several years prior to all of this. I had even lost close to 70 pounds so I was completely baffled that this was happening.

Two years ago I finally gave in and visited my primary care physician’s office. I saw his nurse practitioner for my gyn appointment. Unfortunately, she didn’t seem to understand what I was going through. “Normal” blood work resulted from that visit. She was very concerned about the pain in my chest and my history of tachycardia. She sent me to my cardiologist, who put me on a monitor for a whole month. She once again assured me there is absolutely nothing wrong with my heart. She confirmed again that for some reason I was having irregular electrical pulses that caused the tachycardia. She stated the pain was probably from indigestion and/or musculoskeletal pain.

My cardiologist sent a report to my primary care physician, and nothing was done. They didn’t call me back for a follow up, and even though I know it’s my responsibility to be my own advocate, I was exhausted financially and physically. I fought through another year of the struggle. Then it was time for another checkup…

I was desperate and decided I was going to push harder this time. Returning to the office of my primary care physician, they scheduled me for a checkup with the nurse practitioner. I went in and told her about all the symptoms I had been having since our last visit and for the year prior. I reminded her of everything that transpired from the visit the year before and told her nothing had changed and it seemed to be getting worse. She proceeded to ask me what I was taking for all of the symptoms. I told her nothing except some essential oils. I reminded her that I can’t take many medications because of the side effects and how they bring on tachycardia.

I requested a saliva test for my hormones and thyroid. Reviewing the chart, she confirmed that the thyroid test was normal the year before and advised me they wouldn’t do a saliva test, but would do another blood test and that if it wasn’t conclusive they would then send me to a pharmacy for saliva test which of course I’d be paying for. I mentioned I heard blood tests weren’t as accurate and I’d rather cut out that step and go straight to the saliva test, but she said that wasn’t procedure so they weren’t going to do that.

She also advised me to take a different medication for each of my symptoms, telling me to take a pill for migraines, another pill for indigestion, another one for sleep, go back on the beta blocker I had been off of several years per the orders of my cardiologist, and another pill for general aches and pains. Even though I reminded her how long I had been plagued with all of these symptoms, more than two years, she still told me to come back if I wasn’t better after trying out all of the medications. She also ordered blood work which once again came back normal…

This is a really long story. I just don’t believe it is the best idea to detail it all in one long blog post. I’ll be sharing with you over the couse of a few posts.

My main reason for sharing is to encourage you. If you are going through some of these same types of physical issues please don’t be discouraged. Comment and let us know. There is nothing more discouraging than feeling like you are the only one going through unanswered ailments. You aren’t alone. We’re here to pray for you and offer encouragement.

Tips for an Inspirational and Worshipful Thanksgiving and Christmas

Desiring a more meaningful and inspirational holiday season every year leads me to long for less busyness and more of God. It’s something I strive for every year. This seems like a wonderful goal, doesn’t it? The problem is the holidays come upon me so quickly and I say yes to too many things, so much so that I end up saying, “maybe next year” and I give up. After so many years of feeling defeated, I have finally decided I am going to make it happen this year with The Lord’s help of course. Read tips on my guest post at Raising Homemakers here.

I pray you are successful at a more worshipful holiday season!

Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be shaken but endures forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people both now and forevermore. Psalm 125:1-2

I just want to encourage you today.

Don’t give up. Be steadfast like the mountains.

Continue to persevere in doing good, serving The Lord, and following His ways.

I know there are times when the world or even friends and family will persecute you for your stance or actions in the name of The Lord, but let it discourage you.

Don’t be shaken.

Continue to trust in The Lord.

Our Father will surround you with His strength, presence, protection, and blessings. He is all you need.