Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Answered Prayer

I'm sitting in the living room of my Mom's house.  This is the house where I spent all my preteen/teen years.  It's funny how I suddenly feel like that teenager immediately when I step through the door.  I remember dreaming about my future.  I'd marry the perfect guy who would always hold my hand.  check.  We'd have adorable children.  Check.  I'd be the kind of mom who bake cookies for my kids.  (Gluten free/dairy free/low sugar on rare occasions). Check.  Read them bedtime stories. Check.  Snuggle for hours on end. (A few minutes here and there between laundry, cleaning the kitchen, cooking, letting the dog out....) Check.  My house would look like the houses in magazines. Ummm....  My children would always behave.  Errrr...  I would make sure I always looked very nice when my husband got home from work....Uhhhh.  Dinner would be on the table at 5:30. ehhhh....  Life would be easy breezy....Hahaahahaaa!

Looking back, I realize I had planned a big snooze fest.  My reality is much, much better.  What I have is a husband who loves me unconditionally even on the days I look a mess.  He is my soul mate.  I am so blessed.  Two adorable kids who crack me up, make me smile, and melt my heart.  A house that is full of love...and clutter...but mostly love.  A life that is full of challenges, big challenges, that constantly remind me to lean on God.  I have to admit, lately I've not been so good about leaning on God.  I've been so wrapped up in the day to day, I'm gonna do it my way, that I lost sight of the fact that God is looking out for us.  God showed me, through B, that I need to lean on Him.

B has an extreme fear of swallowing pills.  He takes a lot of them and I have to get creative and hide them.   Just saying the words, "This would be so much easier if you would learn to swallow pills," would cause him to panic and cry.  Sometimes he would run off.  He was terrified.  Two nights ago, we started him on Olive Leaf Extract to combat the Strep antibodies.  This is BITTER medicine.  I sprinkled the contents of the pill on jelly and he choked it down, literally, in 4 swallows.  He was crying, it was that bad.  Then I said the dreaded words mentioned above.  He immediately put his hands over his mouth and cried.  "I can't swallow pills.  I don't want to swallow pills!"  He was still upset when I tucked him into bed.  I covered him up and said, can I pray for you about swallowing pills?  He gave me permission and I began, asking God to make B brave.  I don't like to reveal this, but I had doubt.  I didn't think God was going to answer that it was too big a request.  Silly, considering God can move mountains!

This morning, I told B he could have a bike if he'd swallow a pill.  Yes, I used bribery, but this was a really big deal.  He was terrified, and asked, "But mommy what if it goes down my wrong pipe?"  B is very literal.  He really thought we all have a right pipe and a wrong pipe.  I answered, "We only have one pipe.  Can you feel it?" B, looking at me incredulously, "We do?  Only one pipe?  I don't have a wrong pipe?"  At this point, I'm trying really hard not to laugh.  B took the pill from my hand, walked over to his cup of water, and swallowed the pill!  From terror to fearless!  A smile of relief broke out on his face.  "That wasn't so bad!"  I kid you not, he took all his suppliments that way today!  I am thoroughly convinced God made B brave.  And B is convinced, too.  Later on in the day he said, "Mommy, if I get scared to swallow pills again, we can pray again.  That's just in case God loses my braveness."

I am ashamed that I doubted.  I am in awe that God used my little boy to minister to my heart.  He showed me that He is watching over us, loving us.  God is good!  So good!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Gripping the Wagon

Today I really wanted to throw in the towel and give my boy a cheeseburger....but I didn't.  That's all :)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

PANDAS.....It has a name!

Ladies and Gentlemen, we have diagnosis.  I can't tell you how much relief it brings me to give a name to this thing.  B has PANDAS or ‘Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with
Streptococcus.'  I'd like to tell you all about this disease named after a cute, lovable bear but it's all new to me and I have a lot of research to do.  Here is a link full of great information:

Here are a few things we found out today:
1. B is not metabolizing saturated fats properly so we will be adding more.

2. We should have started B12 shots and olive leaf extract months ago.  We have a loooooong list of supplements to add to his already extensive list.  Any tips for a little guy who can't swallow pills and hates smoothies?

3. There is an Asian Market that has sweet potato pasta.  Can't wait to get back to that city so I can hunt for these!

4. B is hypoglycemic in the night and needs a high protein snack before bed.

5. His yeast has increased (already knew that) so we need to increase his crazy expensive probiotics.  If you see us in our van without hubcaps please know we bought probiotics instead.  Ha!

6.  B has not grown at all (height or weight) in the past 3 months...probably longer.  Hopefully with these supplements, he absorb more nutrition.

7. His metal levels have decreased a little, so he's chelating on his own a little.  With the exception of mercury.  He is still accumulating and we have no idea how.

I'm sitting here in B's movie theater.  (His dark room, bottom bunk, and a portable DVD player).  We are watching Dumbo.  This was his favorite when he was 2.  It's bringing back so many memories.  He has a wooden magnetic train he used to push up and down the hallway singing, "Dumbo choo choo train.  Going down the track. With a smoky stack."  I now see the love Dumbo's mother had for him in a whole new light.  She would do anything to protect her sweet baby.  Just like we are doing everything we can to protect and treat our sweet B.

Earlier this week, we made a chocolate cake (the best ever!) for B to take to Cubbies to celebrate Jesus's birthday.  B asked me, "Are we sharing with my friends?"  I told him there would be other cake for his friends.  His response: "Oh, so just me and Jesus are going to eat it?"  I love this little guy so much!  He never fails to make me smile.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Calling All Mommies: I need some advice.....

We received B's recent labs in the mail today.  Frustrating.  His yeast has grown a lot.  I hate yeast.  Hate it.  This has made me realize that we can't let our guard down.  I thought the whole cooking for B was getting easier, but honestly, I think I've been more lax.  His labs are showing that.  I need to get radical cutting out sugar.  I'm at a loss for breakfast ideas.  One morning he can have eggs, the next almond milk and corn chex, but after that I don't know.  If pancakes, waffles, and muffins are out..I have no ideas.  Any ideas all you mommies out there dealing with yeast overgrowth in your kiddos?  Rice is out for us....

Another bump in the road: shoes.  B can't stand the feel of them on his feet.  He will tolerate swim socks, but it's November, and we need to progress.  He's growing out of most of his shoes, but every time we try on a new pair, he freaks out a little and yells, "Too tight!  Too tight!" even if they are sliding around on his feet.  Any suggestions here?

Winding down is getting harder, too.  He's having a rough time winding down to sleep.  Meaning he is doing gymnastics and shuttle runs back and forth across his room, staying awake in his bed, hearing every little sound.

This mommy's idea tank is empty.  It could be a lot worse and I'm thankful for B's progress.  He's just regressing a little.  I know some of you have super creative ideas....would you mind sharing? :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010


I'd like to interrupt the HS decision stories with a lesson I learned this week.  I've been worried about how I can teach my children to develop characteristics that I don't have. How can I teach them organization when I am so scattered?  How can I teach them patience when so often I run out of it?  How can I teach them physical education when I am very very VERY uncoordinated?  Seriously, if it has a ball, I can't play it.

If you know me in real life, you will know that I am terrible at following through.  I get excited about something and lose interest half way because I get excited about something else.  For this reason, if you look carefully through my drawers and cupboards (please don't!), you might find:  Jewelry making supplies even though I only made one pair of earrings, artist chalk for that one drawing, a pilates video that made for a challenging workout...twice, half a crocheted potholder, an exercise ball that has become a favorite toy for B&J.....the list goes on....and on....and on.....

This summer, I bought the kids a wading pool.  It had a slipper slide and a dinosaur that sprays water through it's mouth.  B & J had great fun with this!  (four times)  Do you see a pattern here?  In my lack of following through, I drained the pool and let it sit on the deck until this week.  From July to October.  It was green, mossy, slimy, dirty, full of leaves.  All of me wanted to throw it out and forget about it.  The temptation was STRONG.  I looked at B and said, "What if we throw this out and get a different one next year?"  B said, "Mommy, I love it."

That is what I needed to hear.  If I threw it out, what would that teach B about being good stewards of what God has given us?  Aren't I always asking him to pick his toys up so they won't get ruined?  Then it hit me.  This is how I teach my children what I may not possess.  They will observe me dealing with the consequences.  I will learn these traits right along with them.

I explained to B that because I left the pool out to get yucky, it was my responsibility to scrub it clean.  I can not even begin to describe the look of satisfaction it gave him to realize Mommy makes mistakes...and that I had a punishment of sorts.  I scrubbed and sprayed and scrubbed and sprayed.  B and Jilly laughed hysterically when I dropped the sprayer on the ground as it continued to spray me in the face.  I tackled that dinosaur all the while wondering why I hadn't noticed the mocking smirk on its face in July.  It felt good, really good! to get that pool cleaned up and put away.  I didn't have the guilt of ruining their pool and taking the easy way out.

I can't wait to see all the lessons God has planned for my children and me.  Maybe we'll learn organization and patience.  I'm hoping to relearn geography and history.  I didn't pay too much attention the first time around.  You never know, perhaps someday soon I'll be able to throw the football with a perfect spiral...or at least not close my eyes when catching one.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Homeschool Decision Part 2

This is going to sound like it has nothing to do with our decision, but I promise you, it does.  Randomness is my forte.  When I was pregnant with Jilly (2 years ago!) Erik was feeling a nudge to find a new church.  We visited a few but I was pregnant, emotional, and a little unstable.  During one church visit, I was hot, nauseous, and extremely tired.  I just knew that church was not a good fit for us.

 I loooooved the church we were already attending.  I consider the congregation my family.  The pastor had incredible messages every week.  I was involved in ministries.  How could we even think of changing churches?  I told Erik I couldn't do it.  We stayed.  Then a strange thing started to happen.  We slowly became less involved.  We seemed to never be able to go to small group.  We became a little distant with our loved ones there.  Our faith was suffering....really suffering.  We began hit or missing Sundays.

Finally, I realized what I think I knew deep down, all along.  God was calling Erik and I was holding us back.  Ouch.  I was trading comfort for God's plan for our lives.  I still love our old church and it's members.  I would recommend that church to anybody...but God wanted us somewhere else.

I had decided that whatever church Erik decided on was the one we would belong to.  I'm sure you can  guess which on he picked...the one I just knew wasn't a fit for our family.  What a blessing this decision has been!  Turns out pregnancy clouded my vision.  This church challenges me to delve deeper into God's word.  The pastor's messages are so full of truth and make me want to study more.  The people there inspire me with their own walks with God.

I was not letting Erik lead our family.  I was holding us back from living God's will.  For some reason, I tend to learn things the hard way.  I am so thankful our God is gracious and merciful.  That in spite of my disobedience, he continues to bless us.

22Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. - Ephesians 5:22-24

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Homeschool Decision Part I

A little over a year ago, Erik's cousin's were gracious enough to let us stay at their house and watched our children while we had a class.  Their family ties are undeniably strong...and so is their faith in God.  They and their children were so loving and patient with B.  They are a homeschooling family.  I remember sitting around the dinner table while they shared their homeschooling experience with us.  Something struck a chord with Erik and I was thinking, "Wow.  They seem to have it together, but this is NOT something I even remotely want to do."

On the drive home, Erik lay out all the reasons homeschooling would be beneficial.  I retorted with any argument I could come up with.  I dug my heels in and wouldn't budge.  How's that for a Godly wife?  Finally, I just said, "If this is something God wants us to do, He will have to change my heart."  (while thinking, yeah right, not gonna happen!)  I believe I even called up my brother, and my dad, and..... and gave every reason under the sun why I would never homeschool.

This was all before B's allergy diagnosis.  Yet, even after the diagnosis, I was not considering the option.  We moved to this side of town because I loved the school district.  I love the little elementary schools with the little desks and the alphabet on the walls.  I love the kindergarten circle time rug.  I love the teachers I worked with in the schools.  I love school.  There is a reason my degree is in education.

Erik was still feeling the pull to homeschool.  I prayed that God would change my heart.  I not so patiently waited as I looked online at private schools thinking we could come up with a good compromise.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


After much, much, much, much, much, (nonstop really) prayer, we have made a decision I didn't think I'd make in a million years.  In fact, had somebody told me this 9 years ago as I sat through hours of class at my University, I would have laughed, out loud, for weeks.  Are you ready?  We are going to homeschool B.  Are you now laughing?  Are you concerned?  Are you going to call me in the morning with a "What are you thinking????"  You are not alone.   These thoughts are going through my mind as well.  Not as doubts, but as "Can I really do this?  What is God thinking?"  I'm a little (a lot) scared.  But I am also excited.  God has a perfect plan and I can't wait to see his blessings when we are obedient to Him.  Please know that:  a.) This is God's decision and it's the path we will follow unless He leads us in another direction.  b.) B has lots of interaction and with other children so don't worry.  We have more opportunities than we will even be able to commit to!  c.) We feel we are best able to provide him with the environment and guidance he needs to learn at this point in his life and development.  d.) I'm very new to this kind of life so support and encouragement would be awesome!  e.) We'll start with Kindergarten and reevaluate our decision (God's decision) each year.

Okay, I realize I look like I am defending this move and maybe I am a little.  God knows (boy does he know!) I've wrestled with this for months.  Soon, I will share everything that took us to this place because it is a great story of God's leading.  But not tonight...or this morning (Morning! Yikes!)  Tired mommies are not patient mommies.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Abide in Me

When I started this blog, I promised myself I'd be real.  Even when it's ugly.  As much as I'd like to be always positive, always happy, uplifting...sometimes things can be downright stinky and I can get stuck.  Tonight was one of those nights. 

I'm tired.  I'm worried.  I'm angry.  Really angry.  Jonah not wanting to go to Nineveh angry.  I'm exhausted from tracking everything B puts in his mouth, touches, and breathes.  I let the worry run away with my imagination tonight as the 'what ifs' ran rampant.  What if B's toxin level increases?  What if the yeast keeps building?  What if the pancakes he had for breakfast (and lunch) are harming him because of the maple syrup?  What if that spoon he is using is made of tin?  Will he regresss?  His eye blinking has come back.  What has he come in contact with?  Did he develop a new allergy?  What will his future be?  I read an article about gluten intolerance/leaky gut/and cancer.  I read about aluminum causing dimentia, Alzheimers/other neurological diseases.  What if? What if?  What if?.....  I know this is sinful.  I know shouldn't let my mind dwell on such things.  But tonight, it was dwelling.  Setting up camp in a giant pit of worry and anger.  Anger at the drug companies for pushing this years flu vaccine so hard.  A vaccine that contains the same toxins I'm trying so hard to keep out of my boy.  The same toxins that are wreaking havoc on his system.  Angry that I feel like I am shouting and nobody can hear me. 

Tonight, before I blogged, I knew had to take this all to God lest I sin in my anger.  On my knees before the Father, I prayed that God would heal B.  That he will keep him safe.  The thought God kept giving me was, "I (God) have been on this journey with B thus far.  I have been keeping watch over him."  Our earthly bodies are temporary and someday when we get to heaven, B will be allergy/toxin/yeast free :).  Then I prayed that God would take this worry from me.  I gave all of it to God.  He let me know, "You are not alone.  Abide in me.  I will give you rest."  I should place my faith in His love.  Next, the anger.  I prayed that I don't even know how to let go of the anger tonight.  I'm having such a hard time with forgiveness.  I asked God to help me work through the anger and to forgive.  I asked forgiveness for my hard heart.  I think this is going to take more time and prayer.  If you are reading this, and have a few prayers to spare, please pray that God softens my heart and brings me to a place of forgiveness.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Ms. Lovies

Somebody once told me God gives us the child we need and vice versa.  I have found this very true with both of my children.  More and more I am convinced God gave B the little sister he needed and Jilly the big brother she needed.  Let me introduce my baby girl, Jilly, aka Smoochie, aka Miss Lovies, aka Princess Pootie Poots (not sure she'll be so fond of that one when she is 16.)

As an infant, Jilly was quiet, happy, content.  I know now she was scheming.  Thinking up exciting adventures.  Observing every nook and cranny she would explore when she finally became mobile.  She was dreaming big.  Fast forward to now.  My almost 2 year old baby girl is still happy.  She wakes up in the morning with a big smile on her face and says "Hi Mommy!  Gooda Sleep!"  She is constantly dancing and singing and laughing and talking and talking and talking and talking and......the girl loves to gab.  All. Day. Long.  And I love it.  I knew we were in for some fun when her first full sentence (at 15 months) was to B.  She kissed him and said, "I kiss you!"  Girlfriend has been chattering ever since.  She is a social butterfly.  This week at church, she wanted to listen to the worship music before I took her into the nursery.  When the choir was finished and took their seats, our pastor was getting ready to preach.  Jilly clapped her hands and shouted, "Yay!  Gooda sing Mommy!"

Jilly's personality is magnetic which is wonderful for B.  She makes him giggle and encourages him, "Yay!  Bubba!  Gooda Job!"  She always draws him into her play.  They have their own sibling language and creative games.  I am thankful their bond is so strong.

Because Jilly Baby is so adventurous, she has no fear.  Today, she completely bypassed the baby slides and headed for the tallest tornado slide.  She will jump off any surface at any height whether we are ready to catch her or not.  B is always very cautious.  In fact, he just mastered the tornado slide this month.  Jilly challenges B to try new things and B keeps his eye on her, reminding her of her limits.  "Sissy!  No!  That is too high!  Go down the stairs!"   He is very observant and protective.

B does not like to get dirty.  When B was little, I couldn't understand why some kids had 'play clothes.'  Why not have my boy look very nice all the time?  Jilly cleared up any confusion I had about that.  She explores everything to the fullest.  Paint: rub in the hair, stick in the ear, taste, and then paint with all ten fingers.  Sand: smell, taste, rub in the hair, put some in her shirt for later.  She encourages him to mess it up a little and he helps her dust off.

B is shy.  Very much like his mommy.  He likes to hide behind my legs and I know the feeling.  Sometimes I wish I could still hide behind my mom's legs.  Jilly will has the incredible knack of making everyone smile.  She's never met a stranger (which means she never leaves my sight in public.)  She's fun and boisterous.  B is super creative and imaginative. Together, they have a really great time.  She has really helped B come out of his shell.

When I was pregnant with Jilly, before I knew I was pregnant, B put his hand on my tummy and said, "Baby Sister."  I did not know he even knew what a 'sister' was.  He was only about the age Jilly is now.  That still gives me goosebumps when I think about it.  That their bond could be that strong.  God chose them perfectly for each other.  They have a beautiful friendship and for that I am very thankful.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Happy Mistake

This afternoon B and I baked some garfava/tapioca cinnamon muffins.  I measured the ingredients and B "carefully" poured the contents in the mixing bowl.  Then he turned the mixer on full speed as flour flew all over my freshly scrubbed counter, stove, and wall.  We got the giggles pretty good.  In the midst of our hysterics, I completely forgot the baking powder.  This may not normally be a huge deal, but when it comes to gluten free baking, the powder is the key for rising.  Gluten free breads are very dense.  I popped the muffins into the oven. After 10 minutes I realized my mistake.  When the timer went off, I pulled out the squatty 'muffins.'  I decided to try them.  Squish.  They had the consistency of a sponge soaked in syrup.  Gluten free flours are expensive, so I did not give up.  I cut the muffins horizontally into thirds, smashed them into flat circles, popped them into the oven and prayed for the best.

Soon, we had some very nice cinnamon crackers.  These are the first crackers B has had since he has been on his allergy free way of life.  A happy mistake!

I began thinking this evening, how like a squat muffins we can be.  We have our hearts and minds set on life turning out one way.  We want to be  muffins.  Beautiful, easy breezy muffins.  We put all our energy into creating our muffin lives.  But God may not intend for all of us to be muffins.  We are squashed a little, reshaped, and baked  by trials (or refined by fire).  If we trust in God and His will for us, we will become what His heart desires.

11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. -Jeremiah 29:11

Friday, August 20, 2010

Lucky Day

We had a much better day today.  B woke up bright and early to help me bake amaranth/quinoa chocolate muffins.  I told him today was a no computer day for me and a not too much television day for him.  He was completely on board.  He said, "Woo Hoo!  Mom, if you use the computer, you will get a fine."  When I asked how I should pay that fine he said, "in my piggy bank."  Smart boy.

We went to Jazzercise and it was fun Friday, which means the kids could dance after class.  They love this!  On the way home, B asked me what a lucky day means.  I told him it is when everything makes you happy.  We ate lunch under the big tree in our front yard.  During our prayer B said, "I'm thankful for God."  Jilly laid on her back, intrigued by all the branches.  B spent his lunch time making us laugh.  Then they played in the bed of the truck.  For some reason this is their favorite activity.  They played until it sprinkled.  I promised B we'd stay out in the sprinkles until they turned to rain.

When Jilly took her nap, B and I  played Buzz, Woody, and Chutes and Ladders people.  Basically the Buzz shows off to the game pieces and they praise everything he does.  We went to the mailbox and we got some junk mail that had happy face stickers.  Of course B thought these were sent to him because it is his 'lucky day.'  Jilly and B had these stickers plastered all over their faces in no time.

B was so sweet to his sister today.  Giving her kisses and helping her.  Jilly was full of love, too.  I think there is something to this no computer/little t.v. thing.  When my attention is elsewhere I tend to miss the blessings God has placed right under my nose.  (I'd better put a quarter in B's piggy bank.  I just wanted to share our 'lucky' day.)

Thursday, August 19, 2010


 It's been one of those nights.  I felt myself pulling away from B and Jilly.  I just wanted to be by myself.  I've been spacey and preoccupied.  I tried to do a movie night, but as riveting as Carebears are, I gave in and brought down the laptop.  Probably not quite the quality time they were looking for.  We did play outside for a bit after that so they got some mommy time.

B is reacting to something.  I'm really hoping its not the popcorn I made for our movies.  A corn allergy would not be a good thing!  I'm hoping it's the bite of rice I let him try in hopes that rice was a false positive.  That was 3 days ago.  Anyway, he threw a tantrum for over an hour because he could not find a certain toy...that he has not played with for at least four months.  While he was looking, he dumped every toy box in his room, the basement, and Jilly's room.  A good mommy would have been helping him look through each box.  This mommy did not.  Instead, I added insult to injury by making him clean up all the messes while he was still upset about losing the toy.  While cleaning, he was mean to his baby sis, so I scolded him (in a not so quiet voice) and sent him to time out.  When his time out was over, he continued to clean.  When he got to the mess in his room, I told him I'd help him with his shoes if he picked up the toys.  I picked up the shoes, then left the room.  A few minutes later he is screaming that I forgot one shoe and I needed to help him pick up the rest of his room.  I ignored the screams and withdrew into my shell that has been my home today.  Then all was quiet in his room.  I checked on him ten minutes later and my heart broke.  His room was spotless. His lights were off and his night light was on.  He had tucked himself in and fell asleep.  His bedtime routine means so much to him.  Just try and leave out a lullaby or a prayer, he'll let you know.  I'm sad that he felt so bad, that I didn't comfort him, that I didn't engage and help him.  What if this is the way God treated me?  What if he would only show me mercy and kindness when I deserve it?  I was not a good example of God's love for B.

After I put Jilly to bed, I grabbed my Bible (honestly, a little begrudgingly....apparently I'm not a good daughter today either).  God led me to this verse:

Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. -Colossians 3:12

Ouch.  A gentle reminder can sometimes feel so heavy.  My children are my ministry and I let them down today.  I'm hoping B & J will accept my redo tomorrow.  A chocolate chip cookie laced apology is in order.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Then and Now: B's experience with Biomedical Treatment

I am truly amazed at B's progress.  Amazed.

B before biomedical treatment:
Tantrums nonstop.  It was nothing for him to throw a tantrum for half an hour.  His tantrums didn't revolve around him not getting his way.  Ninety percent of them would occur because he lost something.  He went through a period of having to carry certain objects around always.  One time it was baby food spoons, three of them.  He would always know if one was missing and we'd turn the house upside down looking for them.  After that it was marker lids.  5 of them.  One for each finger.  He called them finger 'mops'.  If he didn't have five he was a mess.  The worst of the worst was rubber bouncy balls.  Ugh.  To this day bouncy balls are not allowed in our house.  Then it was Hoo Hoo Ha Ha, Blue Doggy and Branson Bear.  He carried them everywhere.  He was very obsessive.  One time we were in the van and he wanted me to hold him.  Obviously I couldn't because I was driving.  He said, "Mommy Ju Ju! (hold you)"  178 times.  I counted to keep myself from going crazy.

B now:
He has the occasional 4 year old outburst, but calms down quicker.  He no longer carries random objects.  In fact, last night I said, "You haven't slept with Hoo Hoo Ha Ha for a while."  His face scrunched up and his voice got sad and I thought, "Great.  Here comes the fit."  He said, "Have you seen him?" I said, "We'll look for him tomorrow."  B said, "Okay."  Okay?!??? No fit?  No obsessing?  No running around the house room to room shrieking?  Okay???!?  Okaaaaay :)

B then:
B had purple circles under his eyes.  He would refuse to eat.  He was in the 3rd percentile for weight.I would have to coax him to take every bite that went into his mouth.  I remember in my gut knowing something was wrong.  I even googled childhood cancer because his appearance worried me so much.  Little man was so constipated, he would cry with every effort...and the end result looked painful enough to make me want to cry.  This made potty training very difficult.  These are days I wish I could take back.  I thought he was holding it in on purpose because he did not want to use the potty, thus causing constipation.  I even disciplined him every time I thought he was holding it in.  Poor kid.  I wish I had known what was really going on.

B now:
B's complexion is great!  No more circles.  He eats all the time...seriously, I feel like I'm cooking and baking 24/7.  He's making up for lost time.  At his last DAN appointment, he weighed in at the 50th percentile!  He is using the restroom independently.....and brags about it.  He's never grasped the concept of 'too much information.'

B then:
The sun was too bright.  His bath was too hot.  The vacuum was too loud.  His swing was too high.  His friend was too stinky (so that one cracked me up).  Everything tasted too strong.  He would only eat bland, bland, and more bland.

B now:
He doesn't complain as much about the sun.  He prefers really hot bath water.  He tolerates the vacuum as long as I warn him before I turn it on.  He wants pepper in his baked beans.  He is still more sensitive than other kids....never give him a peppermint, this I learned  the hard way....but his improvement is huge.

B then:
Random frequent rashes, runny nose, sick all the time.

B now:
One rash since February caused by  his sunblock.  He was sick one time last month.  His nose rarely runs.

B then:
He had a hard time initiating play with other children.  He would get in their face, stand too close, and make a goofy noise.  Most of the time kids his age would back away or ignore him.  His fits didn't help much in the social arena either.

B now:
He is great at playing with others.  Today at the library this really hit home.  He was having conversation, asking questions, initiating play, laughing and pretending with other children.  In fact, another child stood a little too close, made a goofy noise, and B slowly backed away. It has come full circle.

About our pediatric appointment.  We gave our test results to our pediatrician.  He was pretty skeptical.  He said, "I don't know what these test results mean.....I'm a little ignorant about this......Do you mind if I keep these and ask my colleagues?"  He proceeded to ask how we found this doctor, had we read any testimonials, how long had he been in business, etc...skeptical.   It was great that he admitted he didn't know what the test results meant but I'd rather he call our DAN himself.  I would love it if our DAN and pediatrician were on the same page.  My glimmer of hope is this:  He said, "well, I guess if it's working......."

Our DAN is a Ph. D and an MD with extra training in treating autism.  His methods are working miracles for our son and so many like him.  I wish the American Academy of Pediatrics would look into this treatment.  Think of how many more children would be able to recover.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A little bit nerbous (as B would say)

I'm a little nervous.  A lot nervous.  It's past midnight and I am not in bed nervous.  B has his pediatrician appointment tomorrow so he can enter preschool.  This is the appointment where we take in all the tests from our DAN doctor.  I realize we should have done this earlier, but well, I was nervous.  This is the appointment where we politely decline any vaccines.  B is allergic to yeast, beef, pork and has large amounts of aluminum in his system.  Therefor he is allergic to yeast extract, bovine syrum, and gelatin.....not to mention more aluminum could send him into a tale spin.  Why should I be so worried about this?  The truth is I loathe going against the grain.  Biomedicine is looked down upon by conventional medicine, yet it is what is working for B.   Perhaps I shouldn't make assumptions.  Maybe B's pediatrician will be open minded about the treatment that has completely changed my little boy for the better.  Ugh, why is it so hard for me sometimes to hold onto the peace that comes from God?  I'm hoping a little meditation on Philippians 4:4-7 will help put my mind at ease and bring a sound sleep.

4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


If you want B to love you for the rest of your life.  Purchase the Super Allergy Girl Cookbook by Lisa Lundy.  Turn to page 310 and bake the most wonderful gluten free chocolate cookies ever!  EVER!

B had his first cookie in 6 months.  To say he was excited is an understatement.  He helped me with every spoonful of palm shortening, every scoop of gluten free flour, every chocolate chip (okay, so he ate more than he added).  When I added a tablespoon instead of a teaspoon of baking soda he said, "Mommy, sometimes it's really okay to make mistakes."  We put the batter in the refrigerator to chill for an hour.  Every eight minutes he came into the kitchen and said, "Are my cookies ready?"  He watched the oven as they baked.  When the timer went off and I did not hear it  because I was in the bedroom, I walked out to little man with two oven mitts on his hands and the oven door wide open.  (Don't worry.  We had a very detailed discussion about the difference between mommy jobs and kid jobs.)  I told him the cookies had to cool.  He told me he thought they were cool enough.  Some lessons are learned the hard way.  I gave him a warm cookie.  My child with sensory issues chewed that hot cookie quickly trying to avoid its heat.  "It's good, Mommy!  It's not hot."  Little concentrated frown on his face.    I think he ate 5 over the course of the evening.  I think I ate three.  shhhh....

I'm sure this multiplied the yeast in his tummy exponentially.  We finished with a  probiotic chaser.  I'm hoping they battled it out and the probiotic won.

I told B these cookies were so good because he is a real chef and when real chefs help mommy, the food is always good.  B is not lacking self-esteem.  He nodded his head, pleased as punch, and said, "Yeah, I'm a real chef."

Monday, August 2, 2010

Smart plan with a Dum Dum

I am sooo excited to have found a way to get B to take his chewable supplements!  He loathes them.  We call them candy medicine thinking we can trick his brain.  He calls them yuck.  We've done everything to get him to take them.  We've begged, we've punished, we've paid him money.  Yes, we paid him.  Desperate times call for desperate measures, right?  So, my brilliant idea for the evening?  Fun Dip.  We pulverized the tablets.  Vitamin C, 2 calciums and a multi yielded to the mortar and pestle.  Then I gave him a Dum Dum (this is where the plan has its flaws) and showed him how he could pick up the powder with the lollipop.  He finished his vitamins with no sensory discomfort.  Hooray!  Despite the sugar and the risk of developing a Dum Dum allergy, I'm happy.  Maybe I need to order a few different organic lollies so I can rotate them.  Hmmm...
Just two nights ago B and I prayed that God make taking his supplements easier for him.  God is good :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


1. B had taco shells out of order and off his rotation.
2. He had dum dum suckers two days in a row...oops make that three.
3. He did not take all his supplements last night...and skipped vitamins C, A, and calcium tonight.  He is not    feeling well and had a hard enough time with the probiotic.
4. I did not hold my cyber tongue and lashed out at somebody...then quickly erased my temper before I hit send.
5. I harbored resentment toward this person...then was very humbled by her apology.
6. I let B watch A LOT of television today.  
7. B and J had cereal for lunch.  It was organic with almond milk...that makes it okay...right?
8. Jilly is sick too.  She slept most of the day and I spent the afternoon on the computer and not cleaning out the bathroom cupboard like I had planned.  
9. It has been approximately one and a half weeks since I worked on the alphabet with B...and we are only ready for letter E.
10. I haven't wiped down my kitchen counters yet.
11. I did not exercise.  

What I did do today:
1.I spent an incredible early morning time studying and journaling my prayers to God. 
2. I stripped the sheets in B's room and ran 2 loads of laundry. 
3. I listened to the love of my life practice a speech he will be giving tomorrow night.  He is an amazing advocate for B and others like him.  I am so proud. 
4.  I spent the evening holding my sick babies while they fitfully slept.  

I've been beating myself over 1 through 11.  But, you know what?  At the end of this day, my four accomplishments filled my heart....well, maybe not #2, but 1,3, and 4 I wouldn't have traded for anything.

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Rainbow for B

Just the other day, I was making dinner and B was rattling on about colors.  I asked him what color was his favorite and he said, "green, and blue....and white....and..."  I told him that it is okay to like all the colors because when they are put together, they make a beautiful rainbow.  He got quiet for a moment, looked a little sad, then said, "Mom, I've never seen a rainbow."  I replied, "I'm sure God will show you one very soon."  I can't remember if he prayed for one or if that is where the conversation left off.

The very next day, the sky was sunny and clear.  We were running errands in the van.  Suddenly, it began to sprinkle.  It was one of those gentle mists on a hot day that are always welcome.  As the rain let up, we looked to the sky and there was a gorgeous rainbow.  B was in awe!  "Mommy!  That is a beautiful rainbow!"  Then, "That was so nice of God to send me a rainbow!"

Sometimes, it's hard to comprehend that God could love us, as individuals.  That he could love me, know what I need, know the desires of my heart.  This was just the reminder I needed.  God sent my son a rainbow.  A big, colorful, in the sky for everyone to see rainbow and He sent it to B, a little boy.  I am blown away by His goodness and His faithfulness.

That night during our evening prayers, I asked B if there was anything he would like to pray about.  Sometimes he does, sometimes not but he always asks for a prayer.  That evening he said, "Yes.  Dear God, thank you for sending me a rainbow."   Thank you, God, for sending me B.

Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Preparing for Preschool

B is going to preschool next month.  Preschool!  I'm a little excited, a little nervous and, well, a little sad.  With preschool comes physicals (ugh)  and dental appointments (double ugh).  We have been avoiding the dentist for four years now.  Little man lets me floss his teeth and he's a regular brusher.  I've not been too worried about his dental health.  I made the appointment today with a pediatric dentist and my conversation went a little something like this:
 Receptionist: Is there anything we should know about Bryson?
Me: Umm, he has sensory processing disorder.  He may be a little difficult.
Receptionist: Does he have any allergies we should be aware of?
Me: (how do I answer this?) Yes and the fluoride treatment is out for him.
Receptionist:  Why?  Is he allergic to fluoride?
Me: (Why didn't I just say yes?)  No, he has aluminum in his brain.

The receptionist must have thought I am completely off my rocker.  I'm sure she expects us to come waltzing in with tin foil hats.  But the truth is fluoride and aluminum are a bad bad bad bad combination. I am not looking forward to this.  B panics when we cut his hair.  What will he do with the electric tooth polisher buzzing around inside his mouth?  Seriously, the health department should cut parents of children with SPD a little slack.

B also has to have his ears checked to attend preschool.  We tried that already.  We could not get the headphones over his ears.  B panicked, went into fight and flight, and the nurse gave up.  How do I get past that on his health form?

This is all a frustrating process.  It should be no big deal, but to B things like this are huge stressors.  I really hope these medical professionals have a little knowledge and experience with SPD or we could be in for a wild time.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Twas the Night Before.

Four years ago tonight, I couldn't sleep.  I knew I was about to set eyes on my baby boy for the first time.  I imagined his eyes, his nose, his fingers, his face.  The anticipation was intense.  I knew my life would change.  I knew I loved this little person more than my own life.  I. could. not. wait. to. hold. him.

At 2:50 pm on June 23rd, my little monkey arrived.  Exhausted after 3 hrs of pushing, I held him in my arms.  He looked up at me with his squinting blue eyes.  And I thanked God.  Although I imagined him, my mind's image did not even compare this child's beauty.  He was/is a miracle.  I peered into his little face and said, "I'm your momma."  I can still remember how he felt, cheek on my collar bone, curled up into a warm little ball of new life.  Kisses, a million kisses on his soft downy hair.

Someone once told me, a child told me, "He's going to touch a lot of lives."  And he has and he does and most of all he touches their hearts.  What a blessing this sweet boy is.  What an absolute gift from our Heavenly Father.  Happy birthday B.  I love you more than you will ever comprehend. You, child, are so very special to me.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Woot Woot!

We have had an AMAZING week!  B's sensory issues seem to be disappearing one by one.  He swinging has gone from a little swing to..kicking the leaves!  He used the hand dryer at the drive in last night!  He put lotion on this morning!   He ate sunflower seeds, when the texture used to revolt him.  I am one happy momma :)

Biomedical treatment sometimes gets a bad rap.  I've heard comments like, "there's no science behind it to prove it works."  "Parents are just grasping at straws and subjecting their kids to unnecessary treatment."  Let me tell you, I do not care what the critics say.  I have living, breathing, high swinging, proof.  I have yet to figure out why some seem to think changing the foods that our children eat and giving them supplements is extreme.  For my boy's sensitive system, dosing him with Haldol would have been extreme.  Extra vitamins and whole foods, not so much.

B started probiotics this week to get rid of the yeast in his gut.  When researching probiotics we found that children often regress a little while their bodies are detoxing.  I'd say B must be in the detox phase.  He is bouncing off the walls.  He can't sit still for even 30 seconds.  He is constantly talking and when he runs out of things to chatter about, he reverts to babbling like his little sister.  He's having monster meltdowns over trivial things.  I guess this is good news.  Die yeasties!  You nasty little buggers!  Seeing him act like this has really shown me how far he has come.  He used to be this way ALL the time.  And to think I thought he was just quirky.....denial.  Thank you God for the tics!  Without them, we never would have sought treatment.

Now, my mission is to make a gluten, dairy, rice free birthday cake.....and have it taste good.  Little man is turning 4!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The Great Horned Owl

This week, I was reading Character Sketches to B.  A great book!  The first chapter was about the great horned owl.  When the weather is cold, the great horned owl will forgo eating to sit on her eggs....during the entire incubation period!  If she leaves the nest, her eggs could get to cold and the owlets could die.  Even when a blizzard rolls in, she will not leave her eggs to fly to safety.  What an amazing mother!

I felt very convicted after reading this.  I sometimes resent that my schedule is so full of cooking, cleaning, being needed.  (Wow!  That was hard to admit!)  It feels that every minute is taken up with work.  I become very self centered and therefore, self serving.  God blessed me with two beautiful children, a wonderful husband, and I complain about not getting my wants met.  Yet the great horned owl goes without eating! to meet the needs of her children.  When God molds me, I sometimes don't like what I see in my 'character sketch.'  I am, however, grateful He reveals my shortcomings.  These are things I really need to pray about and work on.  I need to:

*Bless my family by taking care of them and not do it 'out of duty.'
*Take more time to play with B&J.
*Enjoy every precious moment I have with my children.
*Give thanks that I have the opportunity to care for my family.
* Stop self serving and gain a servants heart.

 "You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. " ~Galatians 5:13

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Kicking Leaves

  B used to love to swing.  He would say, "higher, higher!  Want to kick leaves!"  We would push him so high his feet would touch the tree branches and he would belly laugh.  I remember getting bored with the swinging, but never bored with the giggle.  One day, while at the park, I put him in the swing.  I put his little legs through the leg holes and proceeded to give him a push.  He immediately started screaming, "stop! STOP!  Too high! Too high!"  It was only half as high as we would push him at home.  I didn't realize, then, that this was a sign of a sensory disorder.  I just thought he was grumpy and didn't want to swing.  These past two years, B would only swing on his tummy, very slowly and low.  That is, until this week.  B sat in his swing, clung to the chains, and said, "Push me mommy!"  It wasn't too high, but this is a start!  I'm really hoping he'll eventually kick the leaves and belly laugh.

B has a fear of the vacuum cleaner.  When he was younger he would scream in terror at the noise it made.  I learned to warn him in advance so he could to go to his room and shut the door.  Tonight, when I started up the vacuum, he sat in the kitchen.  He did not run to his room and I thought, "Hmm.  This is progress!"  Then I saw his little face peek around the corner and in an apprehensive voice, he said, "Mommy?  Can I help?"  He proceeded to take the handle as I helped him pass the vacuum across the floor.

These may seem like small things, but they are HUMONGOUS (as B would say) to me.  I am so proud of him for facing his fears and doing what is more than uncomfortable for him.  He is a little fighter.  I am so thankful God blessed me with this stubborn little boy. 

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

I've had a lot of requests for this from friends with food allergic kids, those who are health conscious, and those with morbid curiosity.  So, here it is.  Enjoy....or not. :)

From the Autism One Conference.  Recipe by Anna Sobaski
(She has awesome gluten free bread mixes and even a few rice free mixes.  A rare find, let me tell you!)

Avocado Chocolate Pudding

2 ripe avocados
3 T pure maple syrup
1/4 c blue agave syrup
1 1/2 t balsamic vinegar
2 t vanilla extract (I used more)
2/3 c dark cocoa powder (I would use less next time. It was really chocolate-y!)
Pinch of salt

(I added a little cinnamon)

1. Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until creamy. Adjust flavor with more balsamic if necessary.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

No Cheese....But a Little Whine

We took B to his DAN doctor yesterday.  I was really hoping he would tell us we could start adding some foods back into B's diet.  No such luck.  In fact, when I asked when we could begin this process, he said, "When he is college age."  I guess he's the expert, but part of me wants to get a second opinion.  I didn't intend for this blog to be a whine session, but today I feel I'll allow myself a little self indulgence.  This stinks.  I feel a little better.

B's hair analysis showed high levels of mercury and aluminum.  His tin levels were off the charts.  Where in the world could he be getting so much tin?  Even the Doc. was stumped. 

I came up with a new system for the rotation diet.  I really hope it works!  15 more years of the same food might drive us all crazy.  This system will allow for a variety of recipes.  

B's doctor said we could try palm shortening.  I thought it was off limits because of his coconut allergy.  If he can tolerate it, it will open the door to new wonderful things, like cookies!  Prayers for no reaction to this are greatly needed and appreciated!

The message at church today hit home.  The story was David and Goliath.  Pastor asked, "What do you do when faced with a challenge?  Do you focus on the challenge or do you focus on God?"  Perhaps today I have been focusing on the challenge.  Silly, when my God is so much bigger than this.  I've been staring at Goliath when God is the real giant. 

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Ticking, But A Good Day Nonetheless

The tics are back again today.  I knew it was going to be a tough day when this morning, B woke up and said, "It's too bright!  It's too bright in here!"  He hadn't displayed a hypersensitivity to light in months!  Then, at Jazzercise, he had a complete (B before special diet) meltdown.  This evening, we are back to shoulder popping and vocal tics.  I wonder what caused this?  I feel a little like a detective.  Is he developing a corn allergy?  Has he been exposed to strep?  Was it the Smarties lollipop I let him have because I 'assumed' it was safe?  I am determined to find the source.

On a happier note, B looooved the avocado pudding.  We finally found a way to get good Omega 3's in our boy.  Jilly loved it too!  I should have photographed their pudding faces.  Jilly had a full beard and B a Groucho Marx mustache.

We planted our garden today and B was so happy to help.  He'd carry each plant to us and brag about his muscles along the way.  I let him smell the basil and he said, "It smells like pizza!"  Then he prayed, "God, please make this plant grow into a special pizza for me.  Amen."  I love that he is talking to God freely.  I wonder what B must think of our garden.  Later, he accidentally stepped on the spaghetti squash plant and said, "Oh no!  Mommy, I just stepped on the spaghetti plant!"  In his mind, we are growing fully cooked meals.  Now wouldn't that be something!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Home Again

It is so good to be home!  In 11 hours, I will be holding B and Smoochie in my arms again!  The amount of information we learned at the Autism One conference is overwhelming.  A good kind of overwhelming.  I could go deep into the science, but my brain is mush.  So, I'll share just some of the lighter things I learned:

1. Avocados can be made into delish chocolate pudding!

2. There are more than 5 senses and B has issues with senses I didn't even know existed.  Vestibular?!?  
     Awesome speakers on Sensory Processing Disorder!

3. I so admire and look up to the parents who are finding cures to their children's autism.  They are some of the strongest people I have the privilege of knowing.

4. Jenny McCarthy is a fantastic speaker and advocate for her child.

5. Dr. Wakefield is a hero.

6. Biomedical treatment is unfairly scrutinized.  It has amazing results and makes much more sense than  
     pysch. drugs.  Well, I didn't just learn this...look at B's results!

7. There is such a thing as gluten free, casein free, soy free chocolate chips and soon I will have 4 bags delivered to me :)

8. Bryson's behavior issues are caused by too much sensory stimulation.  So, when he asks for a tent or a really long bath, he really just wants to block out everything for a while.  Hmmmm......maybe I have SPD....

9. Erik and I make a really great team.  He is my rock and my best friend.  We are very lucky to have each others support and love.

10. Cooking for B is tough work, but you know what?  It's not near as hard as not seeing his little face and getting lovies from Jilly for a week.  I will spend 12 hours in the kitchen if it means B & J will be playing at my feet.

* I called B today and said, "You have one more night night time at Grandma's, then we're coming to get you."  He replied with this, "ALRIGHT!!!!  Mom, that was a really long meeting."  I agree.

10 hours and 32 minutes....then all will be right with my world.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Missing the kids....Hello Chicago

We arrived in Chicago for the Autism One conference.  I miss B and Jilly so much!  This is probably hard on Jilly because she doesn't understand why we are gone.  I'm trying not to think about it.

Part of me feels like an impostor (one of B's favorite words) like we shouldn't be here because we don't have an autism diagnosis.  The other part of me is so ready to learn all I can to help Bryson.  I'm especially looking forward to the day devoted to special diets.  That should qualify us, right?  Also, I need to learn more about sensory processing disorder.  It will be great to meet other parents who are experiencing all that we are experiencing.

I'm really hoping the issue of tantrums will come up.  B gets frustrated so easily.  Not angry, but frustrated.  He will fixate on one thing until it is resolved.  When he was two, he threw a tantrum that lasted 1 hour and 22 minutes.  We should have known something was up, then.  His behavior has improved by leaps and bounds since he's been on the rotation diet.  However, he does still have his moments, especially when triggered by an allergic reaction.

I hate it when people see his tantrums.  I know they are thinking, "that child needs a good spanking!"  He gets a label as a difficult child.  He is compared to his easy going baby sis.  I'm guilty of making comparisons myself.  I hope anyone who has witnessed B's challenging moments could see the child he really is.  Sometimes I think if people could see how much I love him, they would see that he is truly an amazing little boy.  It's silly, I know, but the other day I was staring at him intently with love just willing anyone to see how lovable this little guy is.  Perhaps I am just paranoid.  I know he is adored many of our friends and family.

I feel guilty (a mommy's most felt feeling, I think) even writing this.  So, now let me fill you in on my little guy's endearing qualities...there are many :)  He is super creative.  He can make up stories on the spot.  His vocabulary is huge for an almost four year old.  He is so sweet.  At night he asks for a prayer and then asks me to be his "snuggle bug" while we sing lullabies.  He is thoughtful.  Last week a little boy dropped an armful of books and B stopped playing to help him pick them up.  He has the cutest little boy face I have ever seen.  He is awesome with his little sister.  He watches out for her and is disappointed when it's her bedtime.  He is proud of his family.   He loves to brag on his mommy and daddy.  He is brilliant.  When he hugs me with his skinny little arms, my heart just melts.  Can you tell I miss him?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

B's Awesome Progress!

We struggled a little at first.  The hardest day for B and me happened at Jazzercise.  It was maybe the second week of the new rotation diet.  We arrived at Jazzercise.  I took B and his little sister to the childcare room, forgetting about the snacks served there.  B went immediately to the graham crackers and brought them to Miss Elizabeth.  He looked at her with such hope in his eyes and said, "Will you please open these?"  I looked at him and watched his face fall as I said, "I'm sorry baby, crackers have gluten in them."  His eyes filled with tears and I can't even describe the look on his face.  It was as if at that moment he realized the magnitude of all this.  That his life was really changed.

Now, he is so good about saying, "No thank you.  I have allergies."  The good news is, B has never cared too much for food.  One time he even said, "Mom, I don't like food."  That means giving up some things hasn't been as hard on him as it would be for somebody who LOVES food (like myself).

The progress we have seen in B is nothing short of miraculous.  He has gone from ticking every two minutes to subtle tics every once in a great while.  He will have whole days where we don't notice them at all.  His behavior is significantly less erratic.  He eats so much more.  He sleeps through the night.  His sensory issues have decreased.  He even stopped biting his fingernails...which used to be down to the nubs and then he'd start on his toenails.  The circles under his eyes have disappeared.  He doesn't get sick all the time.  He is filling out and is so much happier!   Praise God!  I can't even begin to tell you how happy this makes me!  God Bless Dr. Baptist!

God at Work!

So, that handy little book for B's diet?  It turned out to be not so useful.  But let me tell you how God had prepared me for this and gave me the equipment to handle it.

Before I knew about B's food allergies, I was on a MOPS internet forum.  There was a woman there who had mentioned her son's multiple food allergies and I thought, "Wow.  I'm so glad we don't have to deal with that!"  Also, in another post, she said she was so excited about a cookbook that made everything easier for her.  I didn't think much of it.

Fast forward to our first allergy testing results.  I was at a loss, but remembered that post.  I sent that lady a message and she told me the name of the book.  The Super Allergy Girl Gluten-Free, Casein-Free, Nut-Free Allergy & Celiac Cookbook by Lisa A. Lundy

I ordered that book right away.  I read up on rotation diets, not knowing B would soon be put on one.  I learned about food families and nutrition.  I poured over that book for hours, no kidding.  Six weeks later when B was put on a rotation diet, I already knew so much.  I took the handy-not-so-handy book from the dietician and revamped the whole thing to fit B's needs.  I never would have been able to do this without the knowledge I gleaned from that Super Allergy book.  I never would have known about that book had God not put that wonderful stranger in my path.  Amazing.  What is even more incredible is the speaker at the Autism One conference is none other than Lisa Lundy! the author of the book.  We had no idea when Erik signed us up.  God at work!

Saturday, May 15, 2010


I get a big F for this morning.  Supplements are absolutely necessary for B.  Getting him to take supplements is verrrry difficult.  This morning I lost my cool and found out you can not place the pill in B's mouth and expect him to swallow it.  Huge fits and tantrums took place....from both of us.  I asked B's forgiveness and he took some vitamin A drops (which he hates).  I think we need to keep looking for a C supplement that is easier to take.  Sometimes I wish they made 'pill shooters' for kids like they do for animals.

Today I'm attempting to cook a weeks worth of food and snacks for B.  He is going to have a blast with his Grandma Judy while we are in Chicago.  Chicago!  We are going to the Autism One Conference to learn about special diets and sensory disorders.  I hope we gain some good tips and I hope somebody tells us how to get our Super Sensory kid to take his vitamins.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


After learning about the 25 food allergies, I had a million different reactions.  The first was confusion.  I could not even comprehend what had just taken place.  I was in a daze.  Next, was anger.  What a quack!  He just wants to sell allergy shots!  He probably didn't read the test right!  B has sensitive skin, of course his skin reacts. My child will be malnourished without these foods!  And finally, resignation.  Well, let's start with dairy and see if it has any did.

B gave milk up a lot easier than we'd thought he would.  He quickly learned to like soy milk and I even found I could make a really tasty tofu lasagna.  B's tics decreased dramatically.  Next, was wheat.  This was a little harder. Everything has wheat.  We took B to get a full blood panel and had to wait 6 weeks to get the results.  I just knew the blood panel would say B had less allergens than the skin test.  I couldn't wait to get the results!  Then, the appointment we were waiting for had finally arrived.

I stared blankly at the page in the Dr.'s office.  43 allergens.  43 allergens.  43 allergens.  This would not leave my brain.  How could I have been poisoning my boy with every single food I'd been feeding him?  He would cry at the dinner table because he felt bad and I would always say, 'one more bite' or 'eat your peas before you can play'...and it was poisoning him.

This is B's (incomplete) allergy list:  apple, barley, beef!, bran, cashew, cheese, coconut, codfish, crab, gluten(bummer), Honey (okay not an allergen, but not recommended), lamb, lobster, malt, milk, mushroom, mustard, oats, green olives, oranges, peas (favorite), peanuts, pork, rice, rye, safflower, salmon, sesame, shrimp, sole, soy (yep, no more soy milk either), sugar (again not an allergy, but bad for yeast overgrowth), swordfish, tuna, walnut, watermelon (his favorite),wheat, yeast, yogurt.

We got a handy little book that had B's diet all written out for us.  B was put on a rotation diet.  This means the food he eats on one day can not be eaten again for four days along with every food in that food family.

This is what Day 2 of the book looks like:
 Protein: Crayfish   Haddock
Grain: Buckwheat, Tapioca, Hemp
Vegetables: Asparagus, onion, seaweed, pumpkin, cassava, shallot, cucumber, rhubarb, squash, leeks, scallion, zucchini
Fruits: Avocado, mango, pineapple, cantaloupe, melon, pomegranate, caba melon, date, persimmon
Nuts: pine, pistachio, poppy
Spices: bay leaf, cardamom, chives, cinnamon, garlic, ginger, saffron
oils: canola, olive
beverages: cinnamon tea, hemp milk, pineapple juice

Overwhelmed.  I was beyond overwhelmed.  I dreamed of food all that night.  I didn't even know what to give B for breakfast.  I didn't know how I could even fit those foods together to make a meal.  One evening that week, Erik came home from work and I went into our bedroom and I melted down.  I shut the door to our room and didn't come out until the next morning.  God was at work even then.  I'd been having trouble sleeping and was just about to doze off when I bolted upright wide awake with this one almost audible message, "It's just food."  It's so silly that this would bring me so much comfort, but my whole outlook began to change.  The next morning, God gave me this verse:

 "Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous hand. ~ Isaiah 41:10"

God's Hand

It till amazes me to see how God has intervened in our lives.  I know He's always been there, but to be able to go back and pinpoint His work in this is....well I don't even have words.  I am humbled that he would even reveal His miracles to us.

A while back, before our daughter was born, Erik had run across an article detailing the biological responses of the human body when receiving vaccines.  I realize this is controversial, but bear with me.  I don't feel like delving into that topic at the moment.  I only bring this up because without this article, we never would have found the proper treatment for B.

This article caught Erik's attention.  He became very interested in vaccine safety, vaccine side effects, and eventually studying Autism itself.  Through his research, we learned about DAN! doctors.  (Defeat Autism Now)  DAN! doctors use biomedical treatments to treat the root cause of symptoms.

Honestly, I didn't know what direction to take with B's tic disorder.  In conventional medicine, it is common practice to send children to a neurologist, observe symptoms for a year to diagnose Tourette's Syndrome, then either medicate or wait to see if the tics subside.  Erik decided we needed to see a DAN! doctor.  Thank you God for this!

Our first meeting with Dr. Baptist was interesting to say the least.  Honestly, I had no idea what to expect.  I just thought we'd go in, he'd say, "here are some supplements" and send us on our merry way.  Ha!  I should have been more prepared.  He decided to allergy test right then and there.  B tested positive for 25 foods.  Milk being the most tragic for little guy.  He loves milk!  (I would find out later that people with food allergies often become addicted to the foods they are allergic to.  The offending foods create a 'high.' So, when B said 'I need milk cup!' He really 'needed' milk cup.  The lush.)  Also, has many environmental allergies that we are now treating with allergy shots.

Had Erik not found that article, B would either still have major tics and be waiting for a diagnosis or be heavily medicated.  God is Good!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Beginning of it All

 B has always had odd little quirks.  We just assumed he was a quirky kid, that the apple didn't fall far from the tree.  He doesn't like loud noises.  The vacuum would send him hiding in his room.  I must admit, the vacuum makes me want to hide, too.  Although for different reasons.  He freaks out when his hair is washed or he gets a hair cut.  He would often complain about the morning sun hurting his eyes.  He began to fear swinging on his swing set.  Finger paints would send him into a panic.  As a toddler, I could not put him down.  He had an attachment to me that was more than clingy.  It was desperation.  He would often throw extreme tantrums, not necessarily anger, but frustration.  There was no consoling him.  It's strange to look back at what seems so obvious and realize we were so oblivious.  Something was wrong.

In October of last year, B's grandma noticed he was blinking often and hard.  I blamed it on fatigue.  He had spent a fun filled week with one of his most favorite people in the world.  I ignored it.  Then, around Christmas time, he exhibited a few more peculiar tendencies.  He would chew his food, then refuse to swallow it.  He would do this with tears in his eyes like he really wanted to swallow, but couldn't.  Then he would cough/sniff, cough/sniff, cough/sniff repeatedly.  So much so, it interrupted his speech.  Then, the shoulder popping began.  Shoulders back, then forward, rib cage sliding over his pelvic bone.  The tic that concerned us most was the head rolling.  He would roll his head around so often his chin became red and chafed from rubbing on his chest.  We could ignore the symptoms no longer.  It was time to seek help.  What follows is all God's doing......

All About B

His smile can light up any room.  His giggle is contagious.  His imagination is bigger than life.  He loves his baby sister.  He looks up to his Daddy.  He can always be found close to his Mommy.  He has an ear for music.  When he grows up he wants to be an astronaut and a skeeber diber (scuba diver).  He adores footy jammies.  He sleeps with 3 stuffed animals: Hoo Hoo Ha Ha (his sock monkey), Blue Doggy, and Branson the bear.  He is brilliant, wonderful, amazing, a true gift from God.  And he has food allergies.  43 of them to be exact.

I will attempt to share our journey to create understanding, to keep family updated, and organize my own thoughts.