Autism recovered?

Medical experts say it's not possible to recover autism. We have living proof in the form of three children, that it IS possible. In my blog you will find recovery stories, along with information regarding health that I have learned over the years. And sometimes just snippets of life to give hope that yes, life can be normal after the hard work is done.

Sit back, enjoy, and be hopeful! RECOVERY HAPPENS!

**Kids names have been changed to protect the innocent and naughty alike. ;)

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Like-minded moms

Whew!  School is done for the year!  YAY!  Paperwork is filed, mailed and/or tossed out and it's done.  My son has a full-time job, my older girl has a part-time job and Kate and I spend a lot of time in the car getting kids from job to job.  It's not a thrill but she's pretty excited that I'm not making her bring school work with her.  hahaha

Since I lost my job last year, our very kind Sensei has let me start cleaning the dojo so I could work off their fee, instead of having to pull them from class.  This has worked out well.  Cleaning someone else's toilets is not on my "favorite things" list, but it's a small price to pay for them to continue karate.  With Tony now fully employed, Kate has been allowed to step into his spot.  She is SO excited!!  Her sweet friend has been such an encouragement to her, trying to help her learn new moves and smiling at her from across the room when it's hard.  Her sister has been very helpful too, but I somehow forgot to get a pic of them two of them.  Next time...

The kid's karate class is for homeschooled children.  Our dojo offers many classes throughout the day, but Sensei offers two classes in the morning specifically for children who are homeschooled.  It's very nice and a good way to meet fellow homeschoolers.  Yesterday, after cleaning, I went outside to talk to a mom I hadn't met before.  We had only talked for a moment when we both realized we have children recovered from autism.  You should have heard the squealing and laughing!!  Grace told me later that they could hear us all the way inside.  Oops, but also lol!  :)  This mom and I almost immediately started chatting about GI problems and how getting a handle on that had improved brain function.  Autism moms can talk poop, I tell ya!  It's what we do because we KNOW that gut problems cause brain problems.

I have met many parents trying to recover their children, especially at conferences.  Plenty of conversations online and over the phone.  But meeting one in my own hometown is way exciting!!  She has had the same experience we have...people can't believe her son used to be on the spectrum.  I have watched him in class for months.  You know, the kids don't just stand there like robots, they interact before and after class, they sometimes goof off during class; they're quite normal children, these homeschooled people.  ;)  I had no idea her son used to be on the spectrum.  And she had no clue mine were either.

It's nice to be on this side of things.  Recovery accomplished.   And now we're able to help others do the same thing.  What a privilege.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Specific Carbohydrate Diet

Recently, the SCD has come across my eyes and brain multiple times.  I learned a long time ago that when a particular subject continues to come across my path, especially when I'm not looking for it, I need to look at it more closely.  Let me tell you why...

Two years ago, I contracted a deadly bacteria, antibiotic resistant of course.  It was after a time of extreme, prolonged stress & grief; during which I ate poorly and did not sleep for weeks.  After running literally hundreds of tests with multiple doctors, all of who could find nothing wrong in spite of how obvious it was that something was wrong, I finally got a stool test showing that I had this horrible thing.  The test was cultured so we could see what would kill it, so as soon as I got my test back, I set about killing it.  I went from bed-ridden to functional in a few months.  The road to recovery is often quite slow and I have struggled with how long it has taken.  But this particular bacteria is known to kill people so I consider myself fortunate that we found it before it finalized it's work.

One of the lingering issues I have is digestive, of course.  A common problem with dysbiosis is that the gut bacteria will continue to swing out of balance, even when you are doing all the right things.  The microbiome is a complex system, so when one guy gets out of whack, they all do.  That makes it so that often, getting rid of one bacteria simply causes other opportunistic bad guys (who cannot be killed by the thing you are taking to get rid of bad guy #1) to take over.  This has happened multiple times in my recovery.  I get rid of one bacteria only to find another make me sick in a different way.  I have an advantage because I can see that happening without having to test every few months.  My tongue tells the story of what's happening in my gut and 4 times so far it has cleared, only to show signs of imbalance within 2 days.   It's quite a frustrating cycle but I am not a quitter (plus I have a ROCKIN' nutritionist/cheerleader!) so I continued to search for permanent solutions.

In my search I spent a week listening to the Gut Health Symposium.  Many excellent, intelligent speakers on the cutting edge of how to heal the gut.  Gut disease if an incredibly common problem!  Almost everyone has indigestion, intolerances, allergies, gas, bloating, gut pain, constipation, diarrhea, name it, you probably know someone with it!  In fact, children with autism are known to have gut disorders; so much so that ignorant doctors will ignore them because they are so common that they say such silly things as "Oh kids with autism just have that" - while not even considering that sometimes autism behaviors are a direct result of the pain the child suffers with in their guts.  But I digress...

I first heard of SCD at the beginning of my autism recovery journey over a decade ago.  At that time there were not good support groups available online.  When I first started looking for online support after reading the book, I was told immediately not to bother doing it because of my children's allergies.  One mother even told me "If you can't do it perfectly, just go away".  So I did.  And I don't regret it as I was lead to the Body Ecology diet, which is a wonderful healing diet and ended up being just what we needed.  But I always did wonder about the SCD.  As I listened to the Gut Health Symposium this month, I continued to hear that SIBO did best with the SCD.  As that is one of the lingering things I struggle with, I had to investigate further.  While I have a positive SIBO test, the traditional way to treat it is with antibiotics.  Since I have finally gotten back on my feet after a fight with an antibiotic resistant bacteria, taking antibiotics seemed like asking for trouble.  In addition, there is a 50-100% re-infection rate within 3 months after the antibiotic.  Seems to me that it just wastes time!  You get a little relief, but in the end, you still have it and it's worse since you made it mad with a dose of antibiotics that didn't work.  I did not find that a worthy solution.  I spent a great deal of time with my nutritionist, naturopath and homeopath, as well as plenty of personal research, looking at solutions.  In the end, you can do everything right, but if you are eating the wrong things, it just won't bring complete healing.  So I, with great sadness, said goodbye to my beans (a staple for me) and hello to meat.  And my symptoms are starting to clear.  I did not think beans could hurt me, but they were on the list of no-no's of the SCD, so I got off them and am seeing great progress!  This is enough for me to embrace the SCD a bit more closely.  But it is a complicated system of eating until you really get your brain wrapped around it.  So I sought out an online support that I had heard about a few years ago.  And that's right here.  These boys aren't just doing a job, they're living the life.  They had struggles of their own that brought them to this lifestyle of eating.  Their advice is very practical.  If you're a Facebooker, you can find their support group here.

So there you have it.  If you struggle with ongoing heartburn, abdominal pain, that dreaded "can't stay awake after I eat syndrome"; if probiotics make you feel worse or you notice that starchy foods make you feel bad, look at this diet.  You don't need to have a positive SIBO test to benefit from it.  But it just might be the answer you're looking for.


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