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 :)