Friday, July 27, 2012
It is official, Project Elimination is over. We have now begun Project add-in.
Over the last two weeks we have added a few new items. With success. Abby still seems to be eating something now and then that will trigger a couple days of malabsorption or allergic response, but at this point it lasts for just a few days. The worst of the dysautonomia symptoms are gone. The hair loss has stopped, the nails are growing..
Of course we have noticed a new thing here and there.. Where before she could not seem to get enough salt, now the lightest amount seems to be too much. Some serious morning kidney moon face, but no jump in proteinuria.. That is pretty easy to fix and adjust. She only tolerates chicken and egg on a regular basis. I can sneak in a bit of rice protein or white beans now and then, but not too often.
3 times now Abby has eaten green peas. For weeks she was talking about how they just sounded so delicious, that her stomach growled at the thought of them, that thinking of pea's actually was keeping her up at night! I was a little leery of letting her satisfy that craving. She has had a lot of issues with beans,peas, skins. but, I keep hearing my Mom's voice in my head- she always said to listen to your body and you will be much healthier for it!
So pea's are back. I am now officially breaking the rules we set for project elimination! LOL I guess we just cannot resist rebelling against any rule! We have learned about so many different diets, but none are a perfect fit for Abby, so maybe she is just an original. :-)
The new favorite-Baby red potato salad, with peas, green pepper(pickled in Braggs apple cider vinegar and dill), a bit of raw diced texas sweet onion, hard boiled farm grain free eggs, and homemade mayo made with grapeseed oil. When I made it the first time I looked at the bowl like it was a disaster waiting to happen. Potato's with skins, pea's, green peppers(home grown, but still)and oil based mayo? She was engrossed in the process and nearly drooling to eat it. I pretty much sat back and started waiting for the bad reactions. And waiting, and waiting. No problem- none. I still kind of thought of it's success as a fluke and we have done it twice more since- and holding my breath. Perfect. No complaints. No reactions. No malabsorption.
We have been trying a few new things off and on and no single item or combination of items seems to sit as well as Abby's potato salad.
I am really trying not to think about fitting her into any single category any longer- she doesn't fit. We are going to go by her gut for now as it seems to be the most reliable indicator. :-)
Still a lot of simple carbs(aka sugar,honey) in the diet but since we are struggling to maintain her weight still we are leaving those alone, for whatever reason, they seem to help her digest proteins. As they say, it is what it is..
All of us are kind of wondering what this new avenue in the journey will bring for Abby. I cannot help but feel a touch panicked not knowing what else could possible pop up as an obstacle but we must move forward, no living in fear.
Admittedly, I cannot help but wonder still if this has been the right choice to go completely from the gut, to avoid the Dr. office, but you cannot argue with the fact that because of those choices and deciding to follow Abby's gut she is very much improved. Second guessing myself is not going to be helpful at this point.
Every time we discuss a new food we think about; how has her sleep been? her skin? If she smells or touches the new food does she wheeze or get rashes? When was the last bout of malabsorption? When was the last time I corned her? Are her toenails growing okay? How much hair loss has she had in the last couple weeks? Has she had problems focusing her eyes? How many days has she had morning moon face from edema in a row? Has she been congested or itchy? how much proteinuria has she had? On a scale of 1-5 how much muscle and joint pain has she been having? Have her hips,knees,shoulders,elbows been slipping out of joint? Bladder leakage? How long does it take her from the time she wakes up to get out of the bed? 30 minutes to get moving or 3 hours? Has she been able to wash her own hair this week? How much protein did she get? How about constipation? Has she had any sources of vitamin B or C or iron etc this week? How does she feel emotionally? Any anxiety with the last reaction? OCD? The checklist seems to get longer instead of shorter, but depending on the balance of answers it helps us decide whether her body is ready for a new veggie, or protein, or fat..etc.
This process is almost as much instinct driven as anything else, which makes it as unpredictable as Abby's body.
However, I have to admit, I cannot help but absolutely enjoy watching her eat every single bite of of that potato salad- that potato salad means victory to me. It means progress and improvement. Maybe with a few more successes I will quit worrying this is just the calm before the storm, or a fluke .. Just maybe Abby will just continue to stabilize and feel better with the elimination of the over processed, chemical polluted Western diet..
I can hope right?
This potato salad is like a rest stop in this journey, a really nice one! Where you are so tired of driving, you gotta pee, the kids need to run off their fidgets. You stop at a rest stop with terrific bathrooms, a gift shop and great little park. Once everyone has stretched and you are ready to hit the road again, you almost hate to leave that perfect stop along the way. Yet, you know you are only halfway there. Here we go!