"Sjogrens may be a life saver". I don't think this sounds unusual as I know many people who get an illness feel the same way. Yes I know, who wants the symptoms, they suck, big time. I don't doubt for a minute that Sjogrens is the result of my lifestyle. Looking back now I see the collision course I was on and just maybe I am lucky its only Sjogrens and not something a lot worse. What was back then? A sugar addict. What I know now is that I am no different to any other addict. I have taken this sugar addiction on and come out the other side with great knowledge that I wish everyone knew about sugar. If you think that sugar can't make you sick you better start researching because there in could lie your biggest wake up and also your cure to many ailments.
Sugar was just one of the many lifestyle, nutritional changes I had to conquer. The other biggie was cortisol. It races through your bloodstream when you stress. I don't need to see a doctor to know my cortisol levels were through the roof I can just look back at my story. An example: running into a glass door at a mall as I was frantic that I would be late to pick my child up from school. I broke my nose but still picked my child up and drove with a bleeding nose to drop him of at his cricket match. I was super mom. That to most people would be a red light to slow down but not me. There was no end to the crazy, when was I going to get it. Sjogrens brought me to my knees with fear and sadness but it made me stop and look at how I was living.
As I said in one of my last discussions that the gluten, sugar and diary free diet is doing my head in, it still is but the rewards are coming, s.l.o.w.l.y. I am getting a bottom row of eyelashes again. I sleep well every few days. I wake up occasionally and feel like my head is clear and refreshed. I found the most amazing new ingredients to cook with and plan to grow my own vegetables but that will come when I have the energy to make a veg patch. My gums aren't swollen and my lips don't look like I just had an overdose of botox. The dryness must be improving. My taste and smell are returning, the loss was soul destroying. My eyes are only dry and painful at night. These are huge improvements in a short space of time. I am still though plagued with fatigue and brain fog but there are those great days when its not severe so there is light. I am not following the diet 100% as I have decided that I am saying a farewell to each of the offending items and its got to be at my pace as this is lifestyle and not a fad diet. Its cheese at the moment and I am just not ready to wish it well. The reward is as I eliminate more from my diet symptoms will also improve.
I realize now that these changes I am making is what it means to love yourself. Eating badly, stress and others is not loving yourself. I disrespected and was disconnected from my body. I love this new relationship I am cultivating with my body. It sends subtle messages and if you listen you know what is wrong or what it may need. 'Accept what is and stop trying to change everything Cathy', I tell myself that every day. I haven't by any means perfected my lifestyle (still not exercising) but I have made a start and for that I am so grateful. I have more compassion for people now and I am open to the imperfections in my life. I choose carefully who and what gives me cortisol.
I doubt they will find a cure for Sjogrens in my lifetime so I may need to accept that these symptoms are here to stay. That is a bitter pill to swallow and leaves me then with the only other option that changing my lifestyle may be the only other cure. I am the forever optimist, I want to be cured. I have hope. :)