3.24.2013

Some Days

 "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds,  because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.  Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." James 1:2-4

Some days feel impossible.  Some days I wonder why God intended for me to be a mom.  Some days I wonder how I can last even 1 more minute without crying, yelling, or just giving up.

Today was one of those days.

I love my kids.  My existence is wrapped up in theirs.  I don't remember who I was before them.  I think about them when I'm not with them.  I worry about their futures.  I love them.  And lots of days, I'd say most days, that love is hugs, holding hands, laughing, sweet memories.

But some days, the love I feel for them is hard.  So hard.  Like trying to breathe in a room that's full of smoke.  Like walking in quick sand that's thick, and up to my waist. Some days the love I feel for them isn't something that comes naturally.  It's something that I have to choose continuously.  It's something that I have to do, even though I don't want to.  And I usually don't want to because I'm tired, or not feeling well, and all around just too selfish.

Today was one of those days.

How can I tell my toddler to "be patient" when I have no patience?  How can I ask him to "be nice" when I'm not always nice?  How can I expect him to listen, sit still, obey...when I haven't figured out to do those things in my own life?  Hypocrite!

Some days I have to reach out to my friends and ask them to pray for me, because I just don't have the words to pray for myself.  Some days I have to leave the room and take a few minutes to breath, because I don't want to say something to my toddler that I'll regret.  Some days I have to look at my husband and just shake my head, because there are no words.

Today was one of those days.

Now I'm sitting in a quiet room.  Both of my kids are asleep.  If I were to peek in on them, they'd look like angels with their eye lashes fluttering and their cheeks soft and pink.  And they are angels.  They are fighting against their limited understanding of this world. They are searching for answers to all their questions.  They are longing for someone to love them despite their faults and unending curiosities.  Sitting here, I remember that some days it's all a mom can do to make sure that her kids are fed, safe, and healthy, and that not always being a super mom is ok.

Today was one of those days.

3.22.2013

New Foods Isaac likes

I just want to get these down so that I remember them.  3 new things in 2 weeks and 2 days.  NOT BAD!

Pistachios (he says, "crack 'em mom!)
Bananas
Gluten free cereal w/ almond milk

 I'm thankful.

And tired.  ;)

3.21.2013

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food failure, food success

Yesterday I caved to the pressure of a 2 year old asking me over and over again for pretzels. I don't give pretzels to Isaac because they contain soy, gluten, and corn.  We've gone 2 weeks with a few mess ups, but for the most part we've been pretty strict with his diet. 

Yesterday was one of those days that I failed at being a mom.  Sure, I kept both my kids alive, fed, entertained. 


But I was grouchy

I was selfish.

I was down right mean to my son at one point.

AND I gave him pretzels.

That's the food Failure. (the rest was parenting failure)

But despite all my short comings, Isaac remained his happy self, and he gave me something to rejoice about.  He ate 2 or 3 pretzels, and then looked at me and said, "something else.  Banana."

Asking for something healthy?  Do my ears deceive me? I was thrilled. Buuuuut unfortunately we didn't have any bananas.  I went to the store last night to make sure that we had plenty today.

That's the food Success!

Anything worth doing takes much effort.  I've always been the kind of give up before I even start.  I've said things like, "it's too hard," and, "it's not working!" about so many things in my life.  That's the reason I'm not a ballerina and I don't tap dance (I don't like it Mom, it's too hard!), that I'm not a concert violinist by now (I can't hold my hand that way!), that I didn't tour the country with a group of christian musicians (it's too unknown!)...
                                                                                             
...my child is something that I can't give up on.  I mean, I guess I could.  But if you're a mom you know that giving up is not an option when it comes to your children.  Especially your children's health!  So I've been pushing through my urge to give up and give in.  And giving in to something like pretzels comes down to exhaustion and lack of patience - both things that I'm working on.  I am human, after all.

So I guess the food failure wasn't really a failure, because after all, he didn't even want the pretzels. Maybe instead of a failure, I'll call it a test (whatever helps me sleep at night!)  It was a test to see how he would do. And he passed, with flying colors!  He's getting it.  He's craving things that are better for him.  He might not be eating a vast array of new foods, but he's choosing foods that are healthy!  And that, my friends, is a wonderful place to start.

Thanking God today for little "failures" that turn into successes. 




3.20.2013

Keeping Mama Well

A big part of keeping Isaac well is being well myself.  It's a struggle!

Being the mom of 2 kids, I found myself eating junk (because it's quick), showering once every few days (don't have time or when I do I'm too tired), not exercising as much as I should (without sleep, how I have energy to even function to take care of my kids is a supernatural mystery, let alone exert tons of extra energy!), neglecting time with my husband (living like roommates instead of 2 people madly in love), and neglecting time with my friends (most of them have kids and are just as busy if not more busy than I am.  Plus, I kind of forgot how to talk to adults!)

In order to be well, I've started making myself do a few things that I wouldn't otherwise want to do.  Like exercise! (not my favorite thing to do in the slightest!)  And praise God - my baby girl of 7 months has been sleeping more.  Not much more, but enough that I'm sleeping some too.

A few months ago I embarked on a weight loss journey.  I started with the tried and true Weight Watcher's program. That helped me lose 17 pounds and get under my pre-pregnancy weight.  I then did the 17 day diet for a few days (hah!  Didn't make it to 17 days!) which helped me lose 6 more. (I plan to get back on that one day...not because it's really a diet, but it's a great way to eat and stay healthy/have energy/cleanse your body, etc.)  Now that I'm at a place where I'm comfortable with my weight, it's time to start doing something that helps me tone up too.  I've been walking a couple times a week on my treadmill for a few months.  I never thought I'd say this, but I actually look forward to that time.  It's just me, music that is way too loud in my headphones, and sweat.  It's alone time, time that is so precious and hard to find.

Last night I went to "boot camp" with a few of my good friends.  I was scared to death! It was 45 minutes of intense work out.  We did planks, side planks, leg circles, mountain climbers, forward lunges...and so many other things that I don't know the names of.  It KiCKEd/My/bUtT!

I'm so sore today.  But I like it.  It means that I did something to help my body.  In a couple days, when I'm feeling like I can walk normally again, I'll do boot camp again.  

I'm also going to start to try and learn to run.  We'll see how that goes.  My goal is to be able to run a mile (jog, I guess) without stopping, by May 25.  2 months.  Think I can do it?

I've also made time for my husband.  He is my partner in crime, my foundation, my constant friend (even when I'm not so nice to him!)  It's not always easy, but it's so important and so vital.  We are going through a Bible study together, something we've wanted to do for years but never got around to.  The more I hear him talk about the Bible, the more I realize that he is thinking exactly what I am, it's just that he knows how to put it into words.  He inspires me, challenges me to know more.  I'm learning to cherish the little things: his laugh.  He has the best laugh!  He always ends up coughing when something is funny enough to make him laugh.  He also has long arms and thus gives the best hugs.  He is the only one I feel I can be completely real with.  He loves me despite my grumpiness in the morning.  He is the true definition of a best friend.

I've also been able to spend some more time with friends.  God has blessed me with amazing friends.  I don't deserve them.  I'm thankful for them!

So, here's to being well.  Getting well is the first step, then I can work on keeping myself well.

3.19.2013

Mara Cookies (Vegan Nut Butter Cookies)

My good friend Mara is recipe testing for us.  She lives in California, 1000 miles away, and wanted to help me out with Isaac's food sensitives.  She is lovingly trying a new recipe for us, once a week, to see if it turns out well, is yummy, and can add to Isaac's short list of foods.  This has been a huge help for me.  It is maddening when I take the time and effort to try out a new recipe only to find out that it's gross, or that it falls flat and doesn't work out.  Having a friend do all the preliminary work for me and say, "it's great!" or "try this ingredient instead," is such an incredible help.  God has blessed me with wonderful friends!  Thank you Mara!

Isaac was skeptical at first, but he's since eaten 3 cookies.  Big success!  Yes, my picky eater even turns away sugary goodness most of the time.  If he likes them, there is a chance that your picky eater will like them too!  You can also add chocolate chips - you can never go wrong with chocolate chips.  Just make sure they are the right kind for your diet/food sensitivities!



Mara Cookies(Nut Butter Cookies)


Ingredients:



·         3/4 t. Baking Soda
·         3 T. GF Flour
·         ¼ C. Sugar
·         2 T. Brown Sugar or Coconut Sugar
·         Pinch of Salt
·         ½ C. Nut Butter (Justin’s Maple Almond Butter)
·         2 T. Maple Syrup (or 2 T. Applesauce; or 2 T. Oil; or combination)
·         ½ t. Vanilla




Whisk together all dry ingredients well.  Add wet ingredients and blend.
Can refrigerate dough for 1 hour (not necessary). 
Use small cookie dough scoop to make about 11 mounded cookies (no need to pat them down).
Bake at 350 for 8 minutes.  Leave cookies on sheet for at least 5 minutes after they are removed
from the oven.






3.12.2013

gluten/egg free chocolate chip cookies




I've always used the chocolate chip cookie recipe on the back of the nestle toll house chocolate chip bag.  I've never gone wrong with it.  I've tried countless other recipes for ccc, and they never turn out as good.  Now that I've started experimenting with different flours, egg, and butter subs, I figured it only right that I start with that recipe as my base.  So glad I did!

Isaac can't have eggs, gluten, or dairy.  All of those things are in the nestle toll house recipe.  I've been experimenting with a butter replacement, and I haven't found one yet.  I tried coconut oil and the cookies got super runny, and they didn't taste as good. So for these I decided to keep the butter in.  Yes, it's not completely Isaac-friendly, but it'll have to do till I have more time to research and experiment.  I thought I found something when I reached for the Crisco, but the first ingredient (and then many other ingredients to follow) had the word "soy" in it.  He can't have soy either.  Sigh.

These cookies have dairy - butter and Nestle Toll House chocolate chips. 

What you'll need:
  •  2 1/4 cups of gluten free flour (mine is a blend that I got from a good friend.  It's 2 cups of rice flour, 2/3 cup potato starch, 1/3 cup tapioca starch, 1 & 1/2 tsp xanthan gum mixed....you can mix it up in large batches and substitute it 1:1 for regular flour)
  • 1/2-1 cup of almond meal/flour (I used Bob's Red Mill Almond meal/flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  •  1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter (softened)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Egg substitute the equivalent of 2 eggs To make the egg substitute grind flax seeds.  You can use a coffee bean grinder or I used my Magic Bullet.  I got the specifics for doing this here: http://www.egglesscooking.com/2008/10/15/egg-replacement-event-flaxseed-meal/  It says to put the flax seeds and the water into a blender and mix, but I just whisked them together in a bowl with a fork, and it worked great!
  • 2 cups chocolate chip
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Set aside the almond flour, as you are going to add this after you've already combined all other ingredients.  Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.  In a separate bowl combine butter, sugars, and vanilla.  Add egg substitute to wet ingredients.  Using an electric mixer, mix for 2 minutes.  Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stopping to mix occasionally.  After all the ingredients have been blended, start adding the almond flour.  This isn't an exact science, and that might not be ok with some of you.  I think I used a total of 1 cup, but I added it by 1/4 cups and stirred well before adding each additional 1/4.  The reason I added it is because the cookie dough was too runny, and when I tried to cook one of the cookies, it fell flat.  So, I added almond flour slowly, and mixed well, until the cookie dough had a more familiar texture/thickness to it.  When I got the desired thickness I added the chocolate chips.

I use a silpat for baking so that I don't have to use cooking spray (soy!)  Feel free to use any of your non-stick methods.  Parchment paper, oil, butter, crisco, cooking spray, whatever!  Put the cookie dough in round, heaping spoonfuls on the cookie sheet. Bake for 8-11 minutes (depending on your oven) or until cookies are light, golden brown.

I put a bunch of cookies spread out on the cooking sheet first, because I didn't know if they were going to turn out.  I thought they might fall flat and be a runny mess.  This is what it looked like:
 




The cookies turned out more delicious than I could have hoped.  I've had so many failures with gluten free cooking - and then add an egg substitute in there - that I expected them to fail before I even started.  You can imagine my delight when I turned the oven light on and saw these fluffy, chunky, non-runny beauties staring back at me.


Not to mention, they actually taste good!  And not just good, delicious!  They taste like the "real" thing!  Shock of shocks, gluten free cooking doesn't have to be taste free!  AND, do you know how many health benefits flax seeds have? 
Check this out: http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/benefits-of-flaxseed

I'm so pleased!

If you try them, could you let me know how they turn out?  What did you do differently?
What would you change? I'd love your feedback! 
Also, what do you use instead of butter that's dairy free?




Chicken Nuggets Recipe

I got permission from Kari at Living Strong Health and Wellness to post her recipe for the grain free, egg free, dairy free chicken nuggets that I made the other night.  I'm sending you to her blog so you can follow the recipe there, since that's exactly what I did!  While you're there, check out all the other great recipes and tips for living healthy and strong!

Grain free, dairy free, egg free chicken nuggets: http://www.livingstrongwellness.com/blog/2013/02/13/almond-crusted-chicken-nuggets-grain-free-dairy-free-egg-free/

Enjoy!


3.10.2013

Grain free, dairy free, egg free...taste free?

Whenever I find a recipe that has no gluten, dairy, eggs, corn, or soy and I tell my husband that it is "all these things free" he says, "and taste free too!"

Isaac's asthma attacks and the need for cleaner eating is not new.  The one thing about this whole situation that is new: my resolve.  I'm resolved to find foods and recipes that are Isaac-friendly and full of taste, flavor, deliciousness.  

Today I am trying a recipe for grain free, dairy free, and egg free chicken nuggets.  I can't even tell you how many chicken nuggets Isaac has eaten in his almost 3 years of life. He likes the frozen kind that I bake in the oven, with lots and lots of ketchup.  Heinz ketchup (which I've always been a huge supporter of because of where it originates - I grew up in Pennsylvania!) which lists it's ingredients as follows: tomato concentrate from red ripe tomatoes, distilled vinegar, high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, salt, spice, onion powder, natural flavoring.

Sad days.  One thing I thought he could surely eat plenty of (because I do and my husband does and almost everyone I know does...) is Heinz ketchup.  But the 3rd ingredient?  No good.  I know there are ketchups out there that don't have it, but they never taste as good (at least to someone like me who is used to the sweet, sweet taste of Heinz!)  And did I mention I grew up in Pennsylvania and feel a sense of loyalty?  Sigh

Back to the point.  Isaac-friendly chicken nuggets.  I'm still waiting for approval from the recipe's creator to post it, and if I get that approval I'll definitely share it with ya'll.  I can say that for me, they were a success.  Easy to make (and if you know me, if it's not easy, I'm not doing it! I'm working to change that attitude...) and don't require a lot of random ingredients that I can't pronounce.

Here's a picture of the beginning:






The middle:


The end:





They were delicious when I tried them.  My husband tried them and he liked them (that is a BIG win!)  Can you guess how Isaac felt about them?

                                                                     He cried at the site of them.  Sat on the couch and yelled,

"No!  No chicken nuggets!  I'm not eating them!"

                                     He hadn't even tried them.  This is how it is with every food that he's not familiar with.  Literally a battle.  Sometimes, SOMETIMES I can get him to take a bite and he smiles and says, "it's so yummy!"  But most of the time, and tonight was no exception, even if I get him to take a bite, he gags, spits it out, and cries even more.  I'm not above force feeding him, but after having been thrown up on, it's not my favorite thing to do.

So tonight we tried something new.                                                Bubble Bites.

He wanted to play with bubbles.  Looking over at the 3 chicken nuggets that had been sitting untouched on the table for over an hour, I came up with an idea.  Actually, I think it was God who gave me the idea.  I'm not especially creative when I've had just a few hours of sleep from waking up to take care of a 7 month old multiple times during the night, my neck and shoulder are killing me (that's another story for another blog post), and I'm on my last nerve after trying with ever fiber I have to get my 2 year old to eat ANYTHING worth eating.

I said, "If you want to play with bubbles, you have to take a bite first."  He looked at me, smiled, turned on his heels and ran over to the table.  He dipped his chicken nugget in that high fructose corn syrup filled, amazing tasting red stuff and bit off a huge bite.  It took him a minute for his brain to catch up with what his mouth just did, but once it did, his eyes got wide with realization and he tried to spit out the bite.  I looked at him and said, "no bubbles till you chew and swallow."  He dutifully finished his bite and drank about a gallon of water to wash it down.  So, we blew bubbles.  Each time he wanted to dip the wand again, it required another bite.  He wanted to hold the wand, another bite first!

I'm happy to say that this method got him to take 5 bites.  By the end he was literally shaking and on the verge of crying.  But he did it.  So we played bubbles for awhile, and he got to eat more of something that he actually likes: grapes. 

Thanks to daylight savings time, it was 9:30 on the clock before I heard him quiet in his room. I'm sitting on the couch, feet swollen from being used all day, throat hurting from pleading with him to just try a bite, mind reeling with information from books that all claim to have the answer to my son's problems, body aching from lack of sleep and being drop dead bone tired. 

I hear it said that it'll be worth it.  It'll get easier.  One day I'll look back and long for these days.  I wonder if the people who say that had a child with special needs?  I don't mean to sound ungrateful or that I wish I had a different child, because that's not it at all.  I love Isaac.  He is my buddy.  He is sensitive, funny, witty, emotional, passionate, and genuine. He melts hearts wherever he goes. 

But today I feel tired.  Spent.  Like I have nothing left.  I long for a time when we have at least 2 foods that are healthy that he likes to eat.  I long for a time when he can tell me how he's hurting, tell me what he needs, and I can explain why we are doing things differently and he can understand.  I will miss the funny toddler talk, and the satin skin.  I will miss being able to pick him up because he's still small enough, and kissing boo boos.  But I will never miss this feeling of exhaustion. 

I only hope that when I'm older, and have lived through this season of life, that I can remember and help younger moms in their journey.  I want to remember how it really was, and not say something like, "my kids were angels!  They never cried.  They slept through the night right away.  They never threw tantrums in restaurants!  I always had dinner on the table, my house was spotless, and my husband and I had ample alone time.  Suck it up!" 

Ok, so no one has ever said that to me in so many words, but I have been told that it shouldn't feel this hard for me and that I should maybe get some counseling.  Maybe that's not a bad idea.  It would give me an hour of quiet time.

3.09.2013

Allergy Tests

The majority of my family lives in California.  In February the 4 of us packed the Pilot full (so full we couldn't see out the back window) and drove to Bakersfield, where we crashed at a good friend's house on our way to southern California.  My husband came with us, but he could only stay for a week as he had to come back to work.  The trip was a total of 20 days.  14 of those days were without dad.  Although I had lots of family around, it was still tough to be a "single" mom those few weeks.  The toughest part was when Isaac got sick.

It started when we were visiting my aunt, and Isaac was outside playing with some friendly neighbor kids.  He was having a wonderful time playing tag and football with them.  After about 15 minutes, I noticed that he was slowing down.  He was short of breath.  At one point he fell down happily on the grass and stayed there for too long.  He picked himself up again and kept running, slowly, after his new friends.  I decided it was time to go.

My biggest mistake was not having his emergency inhaler with us at my aunt's house.  It was 20 minutes away, at my grandma's.  I've never had to use his inhaler for only physical activity before, so I wasn't prepared.  He started coughing and talking funny.  We got into the car and he started wheezing.  He started saying, "I can't...I can't...."  He couldn't breathe!  My heart was in my throat and tears were in my eyes as I sped back to my grandma's house.  I stepped inside and said, "Isaac's having an asthma attack."  Gram was so great, she said, "what can I do?" and immediately attended to my 7 month old daughter, who I brought in still in her car seat.  The emergency inhaler helped very quickly.  After 4 puffs every 15 minutes for an hour, his breathing has slowed considerably, and he wasn't wheezing anymore.

I thought that was the end of it.  2 days later, however, his nose started running, and then he woke up barfing, and then, etc, etc (see last post if you don't know what happens next).....

Isaac's doctor told me to email him anytime Isaac has an asthma attack.  I emailed him and told him about the attack with the physical activity, too, since that was something new.  The doctor recommended I start him on another medication, a daily chewable to further help in the prevention of asthma attacks. My stomach hurt when I heard this.  Another medication?  I already feel like we're running a pharmacy at my house!  But honestly, what else could I do?

Isaac's doctor also recommended that we go see a specialist.  So we did.  The specialist was a delight, and I was told that he used to be the "chief of asthma at this location, but he recently stepped down so he could have a life."  He asked me all about our heating system at home, do we have carpet? do we have dogs? cats? what makes the asthma worse? better? how long has he had it? how long does it last? how many times has he taken oral steroids in the last year?

Isaac was skin tested for food and animal allergies.  He tested positive to all except cats (so all that chasing the cat, grabbing the cat and rubbing his face into the cat can continue!)  The allergies include: mites, dogs, milk, eggs, soy, and corn.  We got instructions to get mattress and pillow protectors for the mites, and to wash his bedding in hot water once a week.  The dogs don't go into his room.  We are to keep him milk, egg, soy, and corn free for 2 weeks.  Since the skin tests are only 25% accurate, there is no way to know if the food is seriously affecting him unless we take it away completely for a time, and then add the foods back in, one by one, and see how he does.

I decided, even though he didn't test sensitive to wheat, to exclude gluten from his diet for a time, too.  After all is said and done I'll probably keep him off dairy and gluten for a long time anyway, as these foods, if he's not processing them correctly, could be contributing to his breathing, growth, and hyper activity problems.  (not to mention his picky eating)



 So, that's where we are, a few days into the "Isaac diet."  Today we went to Bob's Red Mill and stocked up on alternative flours and baking mixes.  It is my hope that I will find the secret to success with a few recipes so that I can share them with you.



3.08.2013

Something's Not Right

"He'll grow out of it.  My son did."



I've heard these words countless times.  From doctors.  From coworkers.  From relatives.  From strangers in waiting rooms.  "He'll grow out of it."

Every time Isaac's nose starts to run (whether it be from a virus, bacterial infection, hay fever, you name it), he has approximately 12 hours until he wakes up, gagging on and then throwing up ropes of thick, air-blocking mucous.  He'll wake up 3-4 times throughout the night, emptying the remaining contents of his stomach (mixed with more mucous) until he is finally too exhausted to throw up anymore.  That's when the mucous stays in his airway, limiting space for air to enter and exit his lungs.  I've been told that the mucous gets so thick that it can even block entire sections of the airway.  Instead of being swallowed or thrown up, the mucous hangs out in there, making it very hard to breathe.

That's not the end of it. The muscles in his tiny airway are also in spasm, restricting airway even more.  I read in a book that to the person experiencing this it feels like trying to breathe through a straw, and also like being slowly suffocated.

When Isaac wakes up after having this miserable night, his breathing is rapid, about twice as fast as usual.  This happens because his little body is working hard to get the same amount of oxygen in, even though the airway is so restricted.  Can you imagine how tired he must be, working this hard?  One doctor told me that it's the equivalent of running a marathon.

When I put my head up to his chest, I can hear a wheeze that sounds like a bed spring squeaking. There is barely any room for the air to get in or out.

This wheeze and rapid breathing is our signal to start oral steroids.  At this point we would have already been using his rescue inhaler at the rate of 2 puffs every 2-4 hours.  Sometimes, when it's exceptionally bad, we have to use the rescue inhaler 4 puffs every 15 minutes for up to an hour.  Add the oral steroids to the other medicine that is already in his little body, and he becomes the human equivalent of a tornado.  It's miserable to watch.  I know that he is tired and sick and struggling to breathe, but all he wants to do is run and sing and play, which would only make his situation worse.

When it gets this bad, we would have already spoken to a doctor or advice nurse to let them know what's going on.  We usually have instructions to keep up with the steroids for 5 days, up his daily inhaler (which is called a controller, different from the emergency inhaler) to 2 puffs twice a day (instead of 1), use the emergency inhaler to keep his airways as open as possible, and bring him in if we have any question about his safety or if things are getting worse instead of better. There have been 2 incidences that we've had to take him to the hospital.  The scariest moment was when he had to be transported by ambulance to a children's hospital and then admitted into the PICU after being diagnosed with acute respiratory failure.  You can read about these hospital visits in past blog posts of mine.

I have all the medication we could ever need to keep him stable in the event of an asthma attack.  I know the quickest way to the closest hospital.

But that's not enough.  Something's not right.  I'm living my life on the edge, just waiting for him to get sick again.  When he goes to church, or a friend's house, or the store...I'm nervous.  What if he catches something?  Will this be the time we have to go to the hospital again?  Will this be the time I have to watch him endure breathing treatment after breathing treatment, be pumped full of steroids and antibiotics, and cough and throw up and, and, and....

I feel very blessed to know some wonderful people.  One in particular is a close friend of mine who is a Naturopathic Doctor.  With her help, we've been able to identify things that can possible help Isaac to heal and stay well, instead of only treating his asthma when he is having an attack.  After some allergy testing, he has been put on a diet free of corn, eggs, soy, gluten, and dairy.  It's been a struggle, but even after just 2 days I can see tiny improvements. 

This blog is dedicated to documenting our day to day life.  What is it like to have a son with asthma, who is also a picky eater, a little bit hyper, extra sensitive, and a bundle of smarts and sweetness?  What kind of food does this child eat?  What failures do we experience?  What triumphs?  What do we do to try and heal, instead of just waiting to "grow out of it"?  Who do we look to for strength in times of utter frustration?

I hope you'll follow us and post feedback, questions, solutions, funny anecdotes.  We'll be happy to have some company.


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