If you haven’t read my latest flair-up journey, you should start here to get the full picture.
Sometime during my flair-up, I told Brett, “Well, I better start praising Jesus for this Crohn’s attack because there has to be something he wants to teach me!” Here are a few things that He did show me through this experience, and I hope it blesses you too.
- I can be a better dietitian by experiencing different diets and digestive issues.
Let me be honest. As a dietitian, I’m not a fan of fad diets, the newest diet book, whatever is being shared most on Facebook, etc. If you want to know why, you can watch my video on why fad diets don’t work. Therefore, I actually was against trying Whole30 at first. No way, I’m not going to try something because everyone is doing it. And if you know me at all, I usually do the opposite of what everyone is doing. However, after listening to my sister-in-law, Ashley, tell me about the success she had with acid reflux, I knew it couldn’t hurt to give it a try.
Why was I still resistant though? Jesus showed me that I had a pride issue. Deep down, I struggle with people asking my opinion on a nutrition topic, yet, then say, “Well, I read…” My pride says, “Then why did you ask my opinion? I guess that article on Facebook written by who knows who is more important than my Purdue University degree, plus continuing education on the most updated food and nutrition research?” Ok, that sounds harsh, and that’s my pride talking, but I probably can get an AMEN from many of my dietitian colleagues. I mean…our competition is…Facebook? Yeah, kinda a low blow. However, I do NOT know everything, and I’m not afraid to tell people that. But I also needed a reminder that just because I’m not familiar with something doesn’t mean it couldn’t work for people.
I had to let go of my pride, and once I did, I actually got excited for this experience and the possibility of my health improving through changing my diet. (Note: For those wondering what my diet was like before Whole 30, I was not perfect, but I aimed daily to live by the guidelines from MyPlate.) Before starting, I came to the conclusion that whether Whole 30 worked or didn’t work, I knew that I would gain valuable insight. If a client asks me my opinion on Whole 30 now, I can give them an honest review of my experience. If they choose to try it, I can understand their struggles, successes, and even give them recipe tips!
Further, not only can I relate to others but I can sympathize with other people with bowel disease, disorders, allergies, etc. I’ve been on the patient end too many times, and knowing that my medical provider can actually understand what I’m going through? That’s a win-win for provider-patient. I can provide not only my dietitian expertise but my personal experience with others who are struggling too.
“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” – 1 Peter 4:10
I have realized that God gave me this “gift” of a bowel disease to serve others. My role is to be a faithful steward of showing people God’s grace in this various form of….well….poop.
2. What works for you, may not work for me. And what works for me, may not work for you.
Another reason why fad diets don’t work for everyone. Every body is different. There is no cookie cutter approach. Whole 30 worked for my sister-in-law and a host of other people; it did not work for me. And guess what? I’m OK with that!! If you have truly put your effort into something to improve your health that you felt worked for “everyone else” and it didn’t work, don’t get discouraged. Because honestly, it didn’t work for EVERYone else. Your body is unique and will respond differently depending on what’s going on. Accept that and don’t give up trying something else or in my case, get medical help. Which leads me to….
3. There is a place for natural remedies AND medicine.
In the mommy world, I feel like this is a really hot topic. There is a lot of guilt and finger pointing for not eating all organic, giving children vaccines, using essential oils vs. over-the-counter meds, and now that it’s summer, the TOXIC sunscreen issue. I skip over all the articles on these topics. I know my convictions and I’m not going to let someone’s convictions make me feel guilty. I encourage you to do the same. If you feel so strongly about no medicine and using only natural remedies, good for you! I commend you! I agree that we should use God’s resources that our at our disposable. I tried to go the natural route, and I really did not want to seek medical attention since the solution is always drugs. However, as you read in the previous post, I was getting so sick. And since my body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit living inside me, I am responsible for taking care of it the best that I know how.
I have been on medication for about 3 weeks now, and I have seen great improvement with my symptoms. I don’t have the urge to go as often, and when the urge comes, I don’t have to literally run. I can actually tell my children, “Mommy will be back. I have to go potty.” Rather than leaving them in the dust. As far as my diet? I’m eating similar to how I was before I tried Whole 30, except I do eat less grains and I don’t eat much dairy. I may introduce dairy later to see if there is an effect, but for now, I am doing very well and want to keep up what I’m doing.
4. “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” – 2 Timothy 1:7
Honestly, I love blogging because the Lord teaches me as I write out my story, thoughts, and emotions. As I wrote the details of this journey in my previous post, I kept asking myself why I was in such denial of my condition? Why did I keep saying, “NO!”, every time Brett told me to call my doctor? Now, I realize it was fear. I feared that I was out of remission, that I would have to be on drugs the rest of my life, that I will eventually be part of the 75% of bowel disease patients who will have surgery to remove diseased sections and yes, maybe the entire colon. Then, when my doctor took out 2 large polyps, I couldn’t help but fear the ugly c-word…cancer. Praise Jesus they were benign, but now what?
Do I live in constant fear of the future? No, I choose not to because fear is not from God. I feared that God never really did heal me. But who am I to know the ways of God? I will trust that His ways are higher than my ways. And as I sit here writing this, I had 2 people message me regarding my previous post and share with me their struggles with ulcerative colitis. It is encouraging that I am not alone. If I can walk along someone else with this struggle, and even point them to the One who heals not only the body but more importantly our sick souls? Then it will be worth every pill I take. Every bathroom run. Every procedure, and yes, even possibly surgery. Will it be hard? Of course. I don’t know the future, but I know that Jesus is holding my hand and whispering, “watch what I can do again when you are weak, and I am strong.”