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Thursday, September 08, 2016

How I Handle My Health Challenges And Still Live A Great Life

Ever since I was born I have had numerous health problems and had to take sonus complete daily. Not sure why. Maybe I’m just lucky! It has taken a lot of learning and using many different techniques to be the best I can be. Even with all of the methods I have implemented and knowledge I have gathered, as I write this I have a bad staph infection. Oops, I just remembered I have to take my medicine, be right back.

ImageIn the meantime here’s the only existing photo of me completely naked. All of us start out so innocent!

Okay, I’m back. Sorry I took so long but I also needed to make some tea – The Spice Is Right from David’s Tea. Yummy.

Before I spill, I want to make it clear that my life is wonderful. I am so incredibly blessed to be married, have an awesome son, great dog, beautiful home, be able to work from home, and just to be alive! But it sure wasn’t easy getting to where I am today and some days are still quite a struggle.

So let’s start from the beginning.

I basically lived on penicillin from the age of two until my thirties. Yes it’s bad to be on it five times a year. But at the time I knew nothing better therefore I had no choice. I always had ear infections, strep throat, tonsillitis, lung infections, mono, bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma problems, throat infections, Epstein Barr, staph infections, parasites, cytomegalovirus, or just weird neurological symptoms that made no sense whatsoever. On top of things I struggled with crippling PMS and menstrual cycles with pain so bad morphine only put a dent in it. At least labour and birth were pretty much the same pain so I handled all of that just fine. I also suffered from debilitating migraines. They were so bad I blacked out. I could hear what was going on around me but I couldn’t open my eyes, speak, or move. All of this sounds pretty awful, but for me the absolute worst thing I ever battled with was severe depression. I also have Seasonal Affective Disorder as well.

Being raised in a chaotic household with an alcoholic father from age four until age eleven was really difficult on my development. I had no confidence and didn’t love myself. I was nerdy, shy, and was teased all the time by other kids at school. I remember coming home crying just about every single day. Having very few friends and no one to talk to was very hard.

Joelle High School Clothes But Not QuiteI never thought I was pretty like other girls my age.

As I got older, it seemed that every time I got sick with something, my depression flared up. I missed a lot of school – the worst of it in high school. I missed half of grade nine, and half of grade twelve. I don’t know how I managed to stay on the honour roll. I guess my brain was still functioning somehow! After high school things began to deteriorate further. I was hospitalized for depression six times between the ages of twenty-one and thirty-three. One time I was locked up for six months! Two of the times I had tried to take my own life because living seemed a torturous, pure hell. The first time I tried, I just had my stomach pumped. However the second time was way more serious and my parents were told I wasn’t going to make it. I am so thankful everyday that not only did I make it, I survived with no damage. Praise God indeed.

Image-1Ten years later on this very spot, Tim asked me to be his wife. Even though I don’t look sad, my fiance had just dumped me and a few months later I tried to kill myself twice.

I’m so happy that I can share my story. Many people have no clue how much I struggle because I seem so happy. I moved to Edmonton in 2001 to attend Grant MacEwan’s Theatre Arts Program. They took only 30 people out of the over 300 that auditioned and I got in! After I graduated in 2004, I was just getting ready to move back home to Saskatoon and that’s when I met Tim online. I took a chance and stayed in Edmonton and I’m sure glad I did. Through Tim’s father I learned about the Catholic faith and in 2007 I became a Catholic. Since then many wonderful things have happened to me. I never envisioned that this always sick gal would have the life that I have. I was never hospitalized again, I got engaged and married to Tim in 2008, moved into our current house in 2010 and got our dog, started my blog in 2013, had my sweet baby James in 2014, and started with dōTERRA in 2016. The sky is the limit for me because I refuse to give up. God is my strength and I lean on Him as much as I can.

Image-3Despite a six month hospital stint I am a university graduate of 2004! My face says it all.

Image-2One of our first dates. Man we were a lot younger!

Mastered Images (2) 300dpiSeptember 13th, 2008

IMG_5575 fixed addressMoved into our new home in 2010 complete with rainbow.

55068_10150331546220195_8257836_oThe first dog I have ever owned, Zeke my future co-blogger.

IMG_0716Fresh outta the oven on June 19, 2014 at 10:30pm – the day of Tim’s Mom’s birthday!

doterra-advertisementTotal game changer indeed!

As I mentioned, there are days I still struggle. It is hard to be cheerful when I’m sick most of the time. One thing that annoys me a lot is my weight fluctuation. Due to my health challenges I can weigh anywhere from 120 pounds to 150 pounds while eating and being active the same. Try having clothes that fit and have them in the right season at the same time! This often doesn’t work out. Thank God for elastic waistbands! Another thing that makes me angry is that I don’t always have the energy to do the things I want with James, my toddler. Toddlers don’t seem to understand when a parent is sick all the time. James has two settings – off when he’s asleep, and on when he’s awake. I am very blessed to have an understanding husband who helps a lot with James and running the house.

So enough about all of this. Let’s talk about what I’m doing to stay the best I can be because maybe I can help someone out there in the same situation. One HUGE game changer for me is regular VEGA testing. For those who don’t know what that is click here. I see someone in Edmonton for testing and if you want her information, head to the Contact Us page and send me an email. If you do your research you will find that there is much debate whether or not VEGA testing is real or works. For me, it has saved my life and continues to do so. In 2008 I was dying and no doctor could figure out what was wrong. My upper respiratory and gastrointestinal systems were shutting down. I couldn’t eat or sleep. Through VEGA testing I found out I had roundworm. Once I treated that, I was back to normal. Funny for something that is proclaimed as “quackery” by many websites.

Homeopathic remedies go hand in hand with the VEGA testing. Once I find out what’s wrong with a VEGA test, then the doctor prescribes homeopathic medicines for me to take. Because of homeopathic medicine I have now been off of penicillin for fours years! I still get sick, but the treatment has changed. I can now detect something way quicker and therefore treat it quicker giving me more bouts of good health. My son has never been on penicillin and I hope to keep it that way. His immune system is strong and he’s WAY healthier than me as a result.

It wasn’t until I threw my neck out when I was working outside the home that I found out I was in phase 3 spinal damage. I never knew that my fall down a flight of stairs as a two year old and my fall off a slide in grade two would have such horrible repercussions. All of this was discovered by a chiropractor. The chiropractor helped me over three years to reverse the damage in my neck and back. Unfortunately I grew crooked due to my injuries and I’ll never be 100%. But now in my fifth year of chiropractic I am at least 90% and I’ll take it! And you know those migraines that I spoke of? They are now gone completely as are a lot of the weird neurological symptoms I used to have.

Massage therapy keeps me going too. It really helps when having a chiropractic adjustment to be relaxed and loose. Massage therapy does that. I’d go all the time but unfortunately my husband’s health care is a joke so it doesn’t cover treatments.

Getting sleep is very important to everyone but I need eight hours a night to function and be healthy. When I get sick often whatever I’m dealing with messes with my GABA (I found that out through VEGA testing) and therefore I get bad insomnia. As a result I still have to take the rare sleeping pill but I have found other ways to deal with insomnia as well such as my Sleepytime Vanilla Tea or Valerian Tea, essential oils, or having a relaxing bath.

Psychotherapy has been a great help for me. How wonderful it is to be able to talk to someone who is objective about my situation and can help me with wonderful advice! I really hope the stigma of seeing someone to talk to goes away for good. Just like the rest of your body, your brain can be sick too!

Light therapy has always helped me a bit once a the days start to get shorter. The problem was I wasn’t doing it early enough in the season. I was starting it at the end of September but by that time I was already having Seasonal Affective Disorder symptoms. I was also following the instructions that came with my light device which read to do the light therapy first thing every morning and if you want to at 4pm as well. I was only doing it in the morning. Then after talking to my psychiatrist, he told me to start light therapy as soon as the days start to get noticeably shorter ( for me that’s August) and to do it only at 4pm. Well talk about a difference. As a result of those changes, last year I had the best fall I have ever had in my life! If you struggle with the fall/winter blahs, try light therapy for yourself and see if it makes you feel better.

Essential oils have been the most recent missing piece of the puzzle for me. I used to work for a company that sold them and have used them for years. I just wasn’t seeing the results I expected and thought oils weren’t for me. Then the owner of the massage place I go to gave me some dōTERRA oils to try. Mind blown!! I have never used any essential oils even half as good as these. I now have a diffuser in every room of my house and use oils everyday. I was so darn impressed with the difference these oils made in my health I now work for them! Someday soon I hope to share some of my favourite diffuser recipes on the blog.

In the future, I want to start changing my diet and get more exercise. I think that may be the last things I need to do to stay healthy. But who knows? There are always new things I keep discovering along my journey to better health. And if I find them, I’ll be sure to share them with you.

IMG_58921cropI am soooooo blessed! 😀

In the meantime if you have any questions or comments, feel free to share them below or email me. To better health!

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