The time has come for me to tell you about my health experience and how it changed my life radically. Some may know that I am taking slow steps in order to live a gluten-free lifestyle; others see me constantly taking vitamins and supplements or making my own teas Questions like, “why did she ask for a gluten-free menu?” or “why is she eating a burger without buns?” have been thought. Here is your answer to why:
Let us begin from my teenage years.
Any food was literally my favorite. Pizza, burgers, bread, fruit, anything… I loved eating food. Unfortunately, my stomach, or whole digestive system did not like it. After eating a slice (or two, or three) of Papa John’s during our family tradition’s Monday Night Pizza, my stomach felt heavy and it was bloated. [Disclaimer: There is nothing wrong with Papa John’s company or their ingredients.] After that I laid in bed clenching my stomach to wait for the terrible pain to go away. A couple hours later, or the next day, I would say, “huh, that was weird.” I continued to please my every little taste buds desire and would my heart out. This happened consistently, I didn’t realize that was not normal and I needed to get it checked out.
Eating any kind of food would instantly upset my stomach, whether I having nausea, or stomachaches. Anything! Candy, Mexican food, burgers, and desserts… you name it. That was my reality. For some odd reason, I thought everyone in the world experienced the same effects as I did. I would ask, “you don’t get stomach pain when you eat that?” What was happening to me was not normal, but I didn’t know what to do about it. Doctors just suggested different medications.
Fast forward to October 2013.
A stomach bug hit the Perez household. Everyone was attacked, including myself… or so I thought. I had a fever and the worst stomachache in my life. I stayed in bed for two days and recovered. Again, my thoughts were blinded by the thought of having a stomach bug.
October 21, 2013.
It was during the evening when it began. Fever, stomachache, and everything else that accompanied a bad digestion hit all over. The stomach bug hit me again!! The whole night consisted of 15-minute intervals of quick trips to the bathroom. Gruesome. Finally the decision came upon to go to the hospital.
I was in the hospital for three days. Those days consisted of no eating, taking disgusting medications, and tests upon tests upon tests. The third day came and was told that I was released. Just like that. A doctor later came and told me my results would be given later. “Well…” I left not feeling better, just, to be honest, mostly high on medication. Later, I come to find out that I have a condition called colitis. Upon the condition I had low blood pressure… yay (not).
Colitis is an Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD for short). There are two kinds of IBD- Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis. To sum it up, both are extremely similar, and both are not pleasant. Both create an inflammation in the digestive system and the symptoms are similar to any food poisoning or stomach bug. The causes are mainly unknown but the main ones are hereditary or if a virus stayed too long in the intestines when younger. You can research for more details to learn more.
Now, I was not about to take around 20 pills a day for the condition. The side effects were terrifying. Constant headaches and anxiety attacks were the main side effects. It was an emotional roller coaster. No way did I want to live through that for the rest of my life. So I decided on going to a Traditional Wellness Coach (aka Rory) to give me some advice. He suggested a lifestyle change of avoiding grains, consuming organic products, and only eating grass-feed beef and cage-free eggs. Upon eating differently, I was to create different teas and take supplements.
I took that alternative in a heartbeat. Eating organically is not easy whatsoever. When eating out, the restaurant choices are so narrow. Also, I decided to go gluten-free and my goodness does that help!! Of course random craving occur and sometimes I cave, but this change is slow and I accept the times when I fall into the deliciousness of a really unhealthy treat. Of course, getting checked up is very important to see how my process is going, but overall the pain and side effects have minimized drastically. I get so excited when people help me adjust to my new lifestyle and when I try gluten-free pastries.
I want to thank everyone who has been supportive and non-judgmental during this time of my life. This season has been filled with ups and downs, with my emotions sometimes taking control of my changes. I am feeling much happier about my body than ever before. Of course, I want to thank God in advance for my healing process and I do believe that I will be healed 100% of this.