Lately I’ve been feeling awful. Though I can’t really pinpoint one specific ailment, I’ve just felt all-around junky. My attitude has been bad, my mood has been swinging and my energy has been low. I’m not here to complain but just to explain to you all where I am at.
The thing is, I’m no stranger to feeling like this. I try to give myself a little props though– I’ve been pregnant or nursing for all but one year of the past ten years. My hormones have been up and down, my sleep patterns have been up and down, overall my health has been up and down. But I press on.
A few years ago, between babies, I got to the point where I felt the worst I had ever felt. It got so bad that I was waking up, taking care of the kids for an hour or two only to collapse back onto the couch and fall asleep– a deep sleep– for a few more hours. Then headaches came on every.single.day. And I reached my breaking point.
I was concerned that I was having thyroid issues (which sometimes can happen temporarily after a baby). The thought sort of bothered me because I really didn’t want to have to rely on a medication to feel better. In the end, it was confirmed that I was suffering from something altogether different– candida overgrowth.
It may sound silly but I was kind of happy with the diagnosis. I was familiar with the condition and knew that a few simple (but big) changes should result in a complete restoration of well-being. And I was right. I changed my diet to include mostly whole foods, steered clear of grains and sugars and added a bunch of supplements that my body was lacking– including a good probiotic, extra vitamin D, a fiber powder and more.
After a short time, I felt better than I had felt in YEARS. It was incredible. My energy was through the roof and my headaches disappeared (I’d also eliminated dairy products due to a sensitivity I didn’t know I had). I lost 10 pounds without even trying. The changes were so profound not just for me, but for my whole family who I was given charge over.
Fast forward to today. Here I am a couple of years (and another beautiful baby!) later and I’m starting to feel pretty UGH again. I’ve let my healthy lifestyle slip away. My hormones are definitely shifting again but I suspect there’s some other stuff going on as well. The positive thing is… I now know how to take care of my body. I know what it’s like to feel good and to truly be healthy and I am taking the steps to get back there. I realize now (again!) that I need to take those big (but simple!) steps toward taking care of little ole me.
This is not a self-centered approached, as I’ve often let myself think. Moms, this is about making sure we are on top of our game. I need to be a side-kick (help-meet) and cheerleader to my husband. I need to be a nurturer and teacher to my children. When I can barely peel myself out of bed in the morning and my head is throbbing, I am no good to anyone. And that’s not good or noble or God-honoring.
I know, Lord willing, that I can feel better. And so can you. Yes, our families need us but they need a high-functioning, healthier version of us.
Because I’ve rambled, I’m breaking this into two parts. The next post, part two, will spell things out a lot better and give practical solutions to combating this dilemma that plagues so many of us DIYparents. Let’s do this together! Stick around to read more!