Welcome! I’m Liz. I have four kids, whom I homeschool, a small farm, and Crohn’s disease. I was diagnosed with Crohn’s 10 years ago, 6 months after the birth of my eldest and almost 5 years after I first started going to the doctors with stomach pain.
It hasn’t been easy. While I finally had an answer I didn’t have a solution. Going to the doctors took a lot of time and nothing changed, in fact I continued to feel worse and worse. Everyday was a struggle; I couldn’t stomach much and what I could went right through me or came back up, I had no energy ( even taking a shower left me so drained I had trouble dressing) and my stomach constantly hurt, some times so much I couldn’t do anything but lie on the floor debating whether or not to go to the emergency room.
About five years ago, I came across the Specfic Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) and I followed it for about a year till morning sickness made me unable to stomach anything but animal crackers. The SCD helped so much. Pre-SCD I could only keep saltine crackers and toast down, anything else came out one way or the other in about 10 minutes , and I didn’t dare eat anything raw – a bite of salad was a nightmare- and not a moment went by my stomach didn’t ache. With the help of the SCD I was able to eat again- even a salad!- and the stomach pain went from from constant to episodic as did the back pain, vomiting and diarrhea. Since then I’ve gone through several periods of following the SCD and falling back into my old ways of eating the Standard American Diet (SAD), usually during those first months of pregnancy.
During a flare, about a year ago, I found the Paleo and Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diets while searching for SCD recipes in hopes of improving my symptoms. While I hadn’t returned to my lowest of lows I was still suffering from frequent flares that were limiting what I could manage and still leaving me in the bathroom, if not on the floor. At first the AIP sounded too restricted. Surely I didn’t need to avoid all those things, after all my GI always insisted that diet had no affect and I could eat whatever. I decided to do some research and after reading The Paleo Approach by Dr. Sarah Ballantyne I started the AIP.
Once again I found my symptoms improving. We went camping throughout the summer, even camping on an island only accessible by canoe and I could do it. It may not sound like much but for me it was huge! In fact I felt so good I started to give myself a bit of lead way, joining the rest of my family eating a bite of birthday cake, a slice of pizza etc. Gradually the fatigue, aches and pains, vomiting and diarrhea returned. My hot water bottle became my constant companion. I even brought a backup hot water bottle as the bottles would eventually give out and I wouldn’t be able to make it through the night with one.
At this point I realized that no matter what my GI said, no matter what the rest of my family ate, or how hyper palatable processed food is I needed do what worked for me and that is the AIP/Paleo.
This blog will be about my journey towards health and wellbeing. Right now that looks like following the Autoimmue Protocol working on lifestyle factors like adequate sleep and managing stress. I look forward to sharing my favorite resources and discovering new ones with you. If you, or someone you love, has a chronic illness I want you to know that while there may not be a cure there is hope for a better tomorrow and it starts with the choices we make today.