Friday, March 20, 2015

The New New Normal

When people have babies, lose a loved one, or make major life changes, they describe their altered existence as their "new normal". I feel like our family has had to embrace so many "new normals" in the past couple of years that I can't actually remember what life was like before I started counting normals! I suspect it wasn't very normal then, either.

Adjusting to life with a second baby boy was one new normal. 

 I can get behind this normal one hundred percent, even when he's sick all the time, or crying, or sleeping only in his car seat, or you know, just acting like a friggin' baby. He's so darn cute. Cloth diapering is becoming yet another normal, too, but that's maybe an entirely different post.

One year into life as the senior pastor's family, and me a working mom with two kids, well, that's becoming more normal too.

The newest normal we have had to come to grips with is another health hiccup where my husband is concerned. After a few months of a barrage of tests and a lot of uncertainty, he was finally diagnosed with cardiac sarcoidosis. We were so thankful it wasn't cancer again, but what the heck is sarcoid? Basically an auto-immune condition attacking his heart, leaving scar tissue which in turn affects the proper beating of his heart, which, as you can imagine, can be the cause of all sorts of problems.

Coming to grips with that meant also accepting the treatment, which is a large dose of steroids and then a long step-down process after that. We are talking years. And with that, we recently decided that Chris would attempt the Auto-Immune Protocol diet, to see if that could positively affect his health, too. Check out the list of foods to avoid:
 Yep, all grains, all dairy, all nuts (including COFFEE?!?), all beans, legumes and seeds are verboten, no eggs, and also nothing from the nightshade family, which includes  potatoes and tomatoes. Wow. So basically meat, poultry, fish and produce. Nothing pre-packaged, no food additives, emulsifiers, and (GULP) no alcohol.

We are trying this for a month. We went to Whole Foods last night and spent over $200 on food for the first half of the week. (BRB, fainting...) There is another grocery trip in a couple of days. 

I'll say that I am SO grateful we found a book of recipes that include meal plans and shopping lists. I don't think I would have had the energy to attempt this protocol without them!!

Anyone else attempting or have attempted this protocol? Any tips and tricks out there? We are just starting out and have little idea what we are in for. We honestly barely have money left over for the rest of the family to have planned meals...believe it or not, that $200 was for food for one person. There were some startup costs for pantry items that we don't usually have lying around, like coconut aminos, coconut cream, coconut flour...basically all kinds of coconut.

So that's that. I could spend time looking back and being overwhelmed by the whirlwind of our lives, or I can choose to be grateful we are all still here together, put my head down and keep going in grace. (Sometimes I choose both!)