Good News and Bad News

I was talking to my father-in-law the other day, and he said that when people tell you two things, it’s always the second thing that is more important or carries more weight. Well, I have good news and bad news to share, but with this in mind, I’ll start with the bad news because the good news here carries a lot of weight.

The bad news is that my doctor confirmed to me yesterday that I have Celiac Disease.  Basically, that means I have to stay away from gluten (wheat, rye, barley and some oats) for the rest of my life.

Gluten-free Icon_Queen of QuinoaIt’s going to be a huge lifestyle change for me and my family. I will have to change a lot of the things I do and make in my own kitchen since there’s a fair amount of concern with cross-contamination from flour dust that gets everywhere when you cook with it or from crumbs that end up in your toaster or on the cutting board when you use regular bread. I will have to be very careful about eating things while I am out (at church functions, at family parties, restaurants, friends’ houses, etc.). And I’ll probably be spending a lot more time cleaning my kitchen (blah). And there are plenty of my go-to comfort foods that I’m super sad about not being able to eat anymore.

But you know what? It’s really not that bad of news because here’s the good news:

  • I don’t have a brain tumor. (And I have the MRI to prove it.)
  • I don’t have Chrone’s Disease. (And I have the intestinal biopsy to prove it.)
  • There are WAY worse things that could be wrong with me, and this is totally manageable.
  • I don’t have to take any medicine to control the disease.
  • There are tons of gluten-free options now, where years ago these wouldn’t have been available to me.
  • I finally know why I have felt so horrible for so many months (and probably years).
  • As soon as I get this under control, my ridiculous, debilitating migraines, extreme fatigue, and the joint/muscle pain similar to fibromyalgia symptoms will be a thing of the past!
  • In trying to eat healthier to figure out what is wrong with me, I’ve inadvertently lost 15 pounds!
  • Because I had only one pair of pants that even sort of fit me anymore, I got to buy a new wardrobe for myself!
  • I have a really good excuse to buy a few (now) much-needed kitchen supplies, like my own dedicated toaster, a Blentec blender, and a new grain mill (dedicated to gluten-free grains).

This list of good news is much more important to me than the bad news. In fact, it’s such good news to me that it makes me want to put it first. Regardless, the good news is what I choose to focus on, and what I must focus on if I am going to be able to have a good attitude about not eating my favorite things for the rest of my life.

Finding out that I have celiac disease has certainly been a journey. And it’s definitely been scary at times. (That week where I wondered if I might have a brain tumor wasn’t exactly my favorite.) And I have been sad and angry and frustrated at times. But really, I am just so thankful that I have an answer for why I haven’t felt well, and now I can do something about it.

In fact, I already have. Even though I didn’t have a 100% celiac confirmation yet, I started eating gluten-free right after I had the biopsy, which was about 2 weeks ago, and I have felt so much better since then. It will still be a while before everything heals and I get the gluten totally out of my system, but I am so grateful to be heading in a healthful direction.

So, to celebrate this day of my good news, will you please savor that piece of whole wheat toast for me? Delight in that Saturday night pizza. Relish your chocolate covered chocolate donut. Enjoy every little thing you get to eat because whatever it is that we eat every day, we are all so blessed to be able to eat it.

— The Conscious Mom

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Believe In Yourself

I thought you might like a little humor to start your weekend off right, and this seemed appropriate, given my last post.  If anyone ever wanted to get me a present, I think this on a T-shirt would be perfect.  🙂

1415760_10202507660322975_1390716411_nEnjoy your Friday night!

— The Conscious Mom

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Just Decide and Stop It!

Easier said than done, of course, but this was pretty funny! And actually quite helpful.

I know it’s oversimplifying it, but isn’t this really all we need to do when we have a problem? Once we decide to stop doing (fill in the blank here), then we really can in many many cases just stop. It might be hard. It might even be arduous. It might be painful and uncomfortable and exhausting.

But it’s only when we really decide to “stop it” that we can create real, lasting change in our lives.

Did you know that the word decide comes from the Latin word decidere, literally, to cut off, (from de + caedere to cut)? When we truly decide to do something (not just irresolutely make a choice of the day), it cuts us off from one path and puts us on another.

Anyway, just thinking about that, especially with regard to my recent (well, it’s been almost 6 months) decision to eat clean. I’ll go into more on the reasons why I decided to do this in another post, but I can see now that it was a real decision — one that cut me off of one path and has kept me on this other one.

So what is it that you want to stop doing in your life? Not really expecting an answer, but hoping that all of us will take a moment to decide.

— The Conscious Mom

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Clean Eating = Clean Sink

For reasons I’ll go into at another time, I’ve been eating super DUPER healthy lately, and I was just noticing tonight as I finished the dishes (yes, ALL of the dishes) how much it was not annoying me to do them.

I usually am SO incredibly tired by the end of the day that I drag through at least putting the food away and on a good day maybe starting the dishwasher, but I almost always leave whatever else is in the sink sitting there dirty until at least the next day. I’m just usually so, so tired. But tonight, even though I am tired (in a more normal way) and would surely go to sleep fairly quickly if I climbed into bed right now, I don’t feel that same super dragging feeling that I normally do.

Time will tell, I guess, but for now, I’m going to say that this …

This is not my sink, but it looks very similar.

This is not my sink, but it looks very similar.

… is a direct result of clean eating. And also the housekeepers who scoured the stains out of my sink yesterday before the open house. 🙂

— The Conscious Mom

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Kiss the Joy As It Flies

I love Love LOVED having artist/author Ben Behunin show his artwork at my home tonight at the open house I hosted for him. His art always inspires me, and it was great fun seeing and chatting with all of my friends and family who came over. In fact, I was having so much fun enjoying the party that I completely forgot to take any pictures of the event.

I had totally planned on it so a) I could blog about it and show you how cool his stuff is, b) put it in my scrapbook, and c) have that certain feeling of security that comes with having a photo in your hands as you recall a memory.

But then you know what happened? I experienced my life. I experienced it. Without any thoughts of past or future. Only present.

It makes me think of the poem by William Blake called Eternity.

He who binds to himself a joy

Does the winged life destroy.

But he who kisses the joy as it flies

Lives in eternity’s sunrise.

I love the idea of kissing the joy as it flies. And you know what? It hurts to love that idea. A moment you love so much that you want to kiss it is flying away, and you have to let it go. And you have to enjoy it while it’s there, otherwise it flies away anyway and then you lost your chance to love it. To KISS it. To ENJOY it. To EXPERIENCE it.

So even though I’m disappointed that I don’t have any pictures of my fun artist open house, I am thoroughly pleased with the fact that I was actually living my life enough to get lost in it.

— The Conscious Mom

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A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again

Seriously? Again? Every. Single. Day?  I mean, I’m glad I’m doing this NaBloPoMo thing, but sometimes I wonder how many times I can post, “I don’t have anything new to say,” before reader attrition will begin.

Probably three.

Right now, I have been completely focused on getting ready for an artist open house I’m hosting tomorrow night. Trying to get and keep my home clean with three young tornadoes whirling around the house has been nearly impossible.

Anyway, I was searching for ANYTHING to post, and at least I happened upon this book by David Foster Wallace that looks awesome. And the title is fitting for how I feel about committing to post something every single day no matter what.

David Foster Wallace

And now the baby is crying again. Gotta run!

— The Conscious Mom

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Sunday Thoughts

Here’s a thought for you today. Sometimes prayer is confusing. I know I’ve sometimes gotten answers that don’t seem to make sense at the time, but I really like this perspective.

http://www.mormonchannel.org/video/mormon-messages?v=2714780496001

Happy Sunday!

— The Conscious Mom

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This Post Is So Boring It Has This For A Title

I’m liking this posting every day thing with NaBloPoMo. It’s really good to force me to write. HOWEVER…

Sometimes I don’t have anything interesting to say. Like today. It’s been a nice day. I made bread with my neighbor. I played a new game. I cleaned out the car. I got some new pants (and shoes and a shirt!) at Savers. And they’re Skinny Jeans, no less. They made me want to do this in the dressing room:

I filled the car with gas. I got *some of* the kids to bed (that baby is such a night owl). And now I’m too tired to think so I’m going to bed. I hope that the Tight Pants skit made this worth your while to read. 🙂

Have a great Saturday night and I’ll see you tomorrow! And in the meantime, rest well and dream of Will Ferrell.

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Transformation of a Homeless Veteran

This video is so moving to me. It’s less than 3 minutes long. Take a moment…

It just shows a) how much showing love and giving a little nurturing to another person can do and b) how important it is to see the person within ourselves that we would treat with dignity. Once he saw the dignified person HE WAS (but appears to have forgotten) and that the makeover artists had also seen and helped bring out in him, he was able to take those next steps to take control of his life.

Wherever we are in our lives and however we feel about ourselves, we MUST be willing to see the good and decent person that is in all of us. We must be willing to see the power that we have within ourselves to change our lives. And we MUST be willing to see the good and decent person in others as well.

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Well, It’s Tomorrow…

I tried again tomorrow today. I did.

I tried really hard in the morning. Then I got tired and I tried less hard. Then it was 11:30 p.m. and you ended up with this uninspiring blog post to read for day 7 of my attempt at NaBloPoMo.

I promise tomorrow will be better.

— The Barely Conscious Mom

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