2013 was a very difficult year. It started off with a stressful trip to Hawaii in January, in which I thought I was moving home to Kauai, but the deal my husband had worked out for our living situation fell through. And so, I had to pack up my two little children and leave Hawaii. This was hard on me in many ways. It wasn’t until a year later that I began to understand the physical components of what the stress did to my body – how the mechanics of stress work, and the toll it actually takes on us.
Oh, we hear all the time how bad stress is for our health. But, how many of us understand how stress can cause an avalanche reaction within our bodies, leading to all sorts of issues? It is my intention, on this blog, to share not only my story of sickness and my journey into true health, but what I learned along the way, and how I accomplished the transformation from very sick to very well.
I am a reader by nature, it is an intrinsic part of who I am, and always has been. So, when my health crumbled around me, I dove in and researched. I read everything I could, I attended various summits on auto-immunity and health, in general. I now have so much information in my head, and I am ready to share, to shine a light for someone who may be stumbling through the darkness, as far as their health and wellness goes.
I will take the first few posts on this blog to talk about my own journey from disease to wellness, and how it all went down. 2013 was a rough year in which my health went downhill, and then 2014 was my year to heal. And let me tell you right now, one of the most important things I learned – our bodies desire wellness, they were built to heal themselves. If we take the time to understand what is happening in our bodies, and then give them the right tools, they WILL heal.
After I returned to California from that stressful trip to Hawaii, it was like I was standing on a hill in the rain, and the rain turned the ground under my feet to mud, until I lost my footing, and slowly slipped – on a physical level. I was tired, fatigued. There were ten pounds around my middle that would not go away. And then, in August the hives started. Oh how wonderful that was. I’m talking about swollen red welts all over my body – waking up like this every morning. They would go down during midday, then in the evening they were back – even worse. There were times that my face and neck were covered with them, and I felt that surely my throat was about to close up completely – a terrifying feeling.
I lived like this all year. At some point during the year I went to a doctor who said my thyroid hormone was low, and gave me a thyroid hormone replacement. I felt a tiny bit more energy after this, but otherwise my symptoms did not budge one bit.
In January of 2014 I went to a different doctor, she was actually a nurse practitioner. She tested not only my thyroid hormone levels, but my thyroid antibodies. Sure enough, the antibodies were elevated, and I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. This essentially means that my own immune system had turned on me, and was attacking my thyroid gland. Oh joy.
It took nine months after this diagnosis for my daily hives to go away. And let me say that if I had listened to the doctors, who said the only treatment for Hashimoto’s is to take thryroid hormone replacement, I would still be having daily hives. But, after my diagnosis in January, and after I had been taking their ‘cure’ for four months, and my hives were still in full force, I knew it was time to take my health into my own hands. Yes, the hormone replacement they prescribed helped, and I still take it. But it was definitely NOT the whole picture, as it did not address the underlying mechanisms had gone awry for me, I began researching with a vengeance, searching for the answer – I always believed that there was one, and that my body could be healthy again.
And it is. And now I am empowered with knowledge, and you can be, too.
After digging in and doing my research, I discovered that auto-immune conditions can be put into a state of remission. In other words, it is possible to stop the attacks in their tracks, and come completely out of all symptoms. It feels like you no longer have the condition. I believe I had a Hashimoto attack eleven years ago. It was awful, and I never did understand it. But, at that time, I unknowingly put it into remission through stress reduction and lifestyle changes. My Hashimoto’s was in a state of remission, until January of 2013 when stress triggered it again, and it flared up. This is an important understanding for anyone with an auto-immune condition, and I will delve into further in later posts.
For now, I will leave you with this thought – your health is your greatest asset, and knowledge is power. Empower yourself and know freedom, inside and out.