Tuesday, January 11, 2011

"Colitiscope" as Lainey Calls It

It's time to just lay it all out there, since most people know I have ulcerative colitis anyway. Although this post isn't to say, woe is me. Many people have diseases far far worse. I literally have nothing to complain about. But I thought I did for awhile.
Am I the only one to ever get a bit cocky and think...I could handle that person's trial? Or, sometimes I even pray for trials but I usually have specific ones in mind. I tend to romanticize even trials. Then God, in His perfect "knows-you-way-more-intimately-than-you-even-know-yourself" kinda way, sovereignly allows a tailor made trial into your life, and you think, that's not the kind I meant when I asked for one!
Well, just shy of a year ago, about six months after my dad died...I started getting some unnerving symptoms. I definitely won't go into any detail on here. For any of you science nerds...like me...you can look it up on Google if you really feel the need.
For some reason, it really freaked me out. Particularly the procedure I had to undergo to get diagnosed. It took about three hours max to gain the right perspective after my dad died. God was so gracious and calmed my heart quickly with His peace beyond understanding. But this...for some reason it took longer...weeks if not months. And it seemed like such a smaller trial in comparison written down on paper. I found myself questioning and doubting more than trusting. I hadn't heard of this disease before...I didn't know anyone who had it. The famous "why me?" question reared it's warty head. That sounds gross but isn't doubting God gross? Finally after His grace alone, He confronted me in His Word, maybe through a sermon, I'm not sure...but He showed me my sin. And the symptoms went away as it went into a kind of remission and I gained back all the weight AND THEN SOME that I lost when I was first diagnosed and not sure what I should be eating. The G.I. doc put me on some medicine to take indefinitely and said that it is effective in 70 to 90 percent of patients. He said that diet has nothing to do with it and I could pretty much eat whatever I wanted and to stay away from foods that bothered me.
Well...eating whatever I wanted quickly turned to gluttony. That doesn't always mean you become fat, but who knows if I continued to eat every single dessert that was on the Customer Service table!
And soon I found myself in a flare up worse than ever that lasted for two months, the medicine wasn't doing a thing and I wound up in the hospital with swollen legs so much so that I couldn't walk. At least not without extreme pain. Right before that my ankle's were taking turns swelling up. The first time I went in they said I had sprained my ankle even though I hadn't remembered hurting it in any way.
All this to show God's crazy amazing faithfulness to a selfish brat like me!
A couple weeks before I had gone into the hospital I had found a diet...or a way of eating online. I had typed in "colitis and diet" in the Google browser and you know how those ads pop up at the top? Right above the actual articles and websites that you are actually looking for? Well, the first ad must have sounded good because I never click on those, but I did this time. And sure enough, it sounded REALLY gimmicky. "Pain free in one day!" "Great taste, no pain!" The woman behind it, Sherry Brescia, had a four day menu available as a PDF that you could download for free. Then if you found it worked for you, you could purchase her book for about 40 bucks. Yeah. Right.
I downloaded it anyway, but pretty much ignored it.
Well, when my legs started swelling up again on Christmas night and I had to miss church the next morning with no hope of seeing a doctor on the holiday weekend, I thought I would try anything. I thought I would stick very closely to the diet and see how it went. (Also, on a side note, I had recently seen my new general practitioner and she said that she has lots of patients with colitis who all swear by diets and she herself believes its legitimate. Kinda makes sense!)
I noticed a HUGE difference in how I felt the very first day. After two days I had hardly any symptoms but was majorly wanting sugar, so I ate a truffle at my Grandma's house and had symptoms immediately. Hm. So I went back onto the strict diet. Now this was during the holiday season people. I was grumpy, to say the least. Not trusting God again. It took a few days for me to realize my sinful attitude and repent of it. Then I just was so excited because this thing was working!
And it still is! Seriously no more symptoms! It's almost unbelievable! The gist of the diet is that it's about combining foods. Eating starches and proteins separately. Sherry and others who promote food combining say that starches require an alkaline enzyme in our bodies to digest while proteins require an acidic enzyme. As you learn in Biology class, alkalines and acids neutralize each other. Well, apparently the same thing happens in your body when the two enzymes mix, and then the digestion process is massively slowed down. Which causes problems. Especially in certain people like me. So most desserts are out because they are poorly combined in themselves. Flour and sugar with eggs and milk. I have to eat fruit completely by itself. I can pretty much eat most vegetables with anything. And peanut butter and honey have become my new desserts. :) It's really not that bad, and it is so worth it to feel this great.
I am so thankful that God allowed me to find that site! And that He answers prayer. I knew I wasn't having self control in the food area and I was praying that He would change me. Well, I was stubborn and while there may be other reasons why I was allowed to undergo this small trial, I know He has taught me so much through it. Why is He so kind to me??? I'm a blockhead!

Well, if you read this far, thanks! Always trust our loving God and turn to Him FIRST in your trials!

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