I have been thinking about writing a blog for years…probably since I became a Mum actually. That was when I began reading blogs about all sorts of things; motherhood, homemaking, faith, cooking, health, etc.
The first year of motherhood was hard!
In little over a year, our lives had changed dramatically. Our son was born, my father was diagnosed with terminal lymphoma, our son suffered with severe eczema, my father passed away, I was diagnosed with a hereditary kidney disease, our son was diagnosed with life-threatening food allergies to dairy, eggs and most nuts, along with being intolerant to gluten, and sensitive to most artificial chemicals, preservatives, flavours and colours.
When our son was 14 months old, we had to give him a shot of adrenaline using an epipen, as he reacted to some take away food that was supposedly dairy, egg and nut free. We then had to call an ambulance to take our frail, limp little boy who couldn’t breathe and whose face had swelled up like an elephant, to hospital. That first year of motherhood was just plain HARD. Even now as I write this, I am filled with emotions. It still feels so raw to me as I live with the reality of the changes that occurred in our life that first year.
Dreams and expectations
As a brand new mother, you have dreams and expectations for your future…dreams that you think will turn into reality. As a teacher, I was prepared for motherhood…I had read ‘all the books’ (so I thought) on how to parent a baby the ‘right’ way. I had a wonderful birth plan and had bought all the things I thought we needed to be able to care for our baby as he entered the world. But I had forgotten one thing…our plan is not always God’s plan and our ways are not always God’s ways. I can’t control everything in my life, let alone my child’s life. And there are some circumstances in life that you can just never truly prepare yourself for.
That first year of motherhood, my dreams for my family and extended family were shattered. Who would have thought that my father’s passing, our son’s life threatening allergies and my kidney disease would bring us where we are today. These three big events, led us down a path of searching for answers and alternatives. These events led us on a path to improved health for our whole family; to study at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition®; to start this website, a YouTube channel and ‘Nurtured Living’, an integrative health coaching business. These events as hard and as tough as they were, led us on a path to change and I am thankful for that.
I always say to people that it’s all relative to what you are used to. Cooking every meal, while trying to navigate the food allergens and intolerances for our family of 5 is tiring.
But do I think all our effort is making a difference? Definitely!
There are many days and nights that I feel exhausted and unmotivated to cook healthy meals for our families needs. But then my husband so kindly reminds me that if it were not for our diet and lifestyle changes, I would still be suffering from severe constipation, fatigue, sinusitis and my kidney disease would have probably progressed further than it has.
If we were still eating processed, chemical-laden, sugary food on a regular basis…then our children’s health would be much worse than it is today, in particularly their skin. He says this to me, because he knows as I do, that only a few months ago our son’s skin was the worst it has been since we began this journey. We were back to needing to use steroid creams and wet wraps for his eczema. With lots of birthday’s and Christmas celebrations, a road trip with the family and a family wedding, we ate way too much processed food and sugar, and the effects were evident. It took 6 – 8 weeks for our son’s skin to heal. We were both reminded again, that our dietary and lifestyle changes have made a dramatic, visible and real difference to our lives!
I can’t control everything
And even though I can’t control everything in our families lives, I do the best I can with the knowledge and resources I have at the time (as we all do)…and I pray and give the rest to God; knowing that my heavenly Father cares deeply for me and that he loves my family as much as I do, if not even more.
So begins my blog on nurtured living…my thoughts as a mum, a wife, a teacher, a health coach and a child of God. I hope that these pages encourage you and your family on your own journey and that they would inspire you to live a nurtured and fulfilled life.