A Perfect Nightcap…

Intensity seems to bear little children that can just gnaw at us. For me, the loudest of these little rascals is on my right arm. From the middle of my forearm to the top third of my upper arm, the part of the arm that the sun can see if I’m wearing a tank top, I am feverish. That feeling, when one has a fever and the skin is very sensitive, painful even to touch is what I mean by feverish. It came about today, and I’m hoping it just stays where it is and fades away rather than spreading through any other part of my body.

Whenever this happens, I take an inventory of what might have caused it. Usually the first things that come up are the stressful elements in my life. Yesterday my 6mo baby got vaccinated. Debates about this topic run rampant, and up until about a week ago, I was not one of the people who supported vaccinations. Fears run rampant on both sides of this debate which does not help someone like me who is looking for a true journalistic overview of the pro’s and con’s. I believe this is because the research is lacking but I won’t go into all that now. I did decide to do it and another article I wrote earlier today details that so I will move on.

Over the past 3 weeks, I have been getting used to a new diet as well. My ND did a lot of tests on me, tests I had never had done before using hair and blood samples to test my nutrient levels, allergies, and other stuff related to that. I found out that I am very reactive to a variety of foods, most common of course are the gluten, eggs, dairy, soy, and a surprising number of nuts and grains. Point being, my diet has made a major transformation recently. Even more so when you add in some of the other variables, like how deficient I was in certain things like Lithium, Potassium, Sodium, and I was told that even my Cholesterol was too low even for my body to replace any myelin that my immune system might have taken a bite out of. So the closest mainstream diet to describe what I can eat is the Atkins, though I’m not eating beef, eggs or dairy. Point being, it is frustrating that despite all these good changes, my arm feels funny. Interesting too is that the nutrient deficiencies have symptoms (as seen in the links) that are virtually the same as any symptoms that I have experienced with MS.

Another new part of my life is this monthly infusion that I started last week, and will be getting monthly for at least another 6 months called IVIG. My experience getting started with that was a good one, almost scary, but someone figured out that some of the math was wrong before it became an issue.

Money is still a stress as well, applying to jobs is difficult when I am distracted with the number of doctors appointments and problems on my plate. I’m a few months behind on daycare, and while it is tempting to pull her out, at the same time I certainly won’t be more productive and say a job does come through, that would be a whole new challenge in itself. Not to mention my work involving my passion of building and growing the online MomsWithMS project I started a few months ago, it feels like my destiny and anything taking me away from that, my kids, and telling my story feels like an interruption. Fortunately my husband has had some good leads for jobs which is exciting for both of us. Though when the water heater broke (2 days ago) it was comical how close to being ‘out’ of money we were.

Painting is something that can benefit our situation a lot. I am a graduate of Parsons School of Design and even since before I attended that school, painting has been a way for me to express what I couldn’t communicate with words. I’m working on improving my written language but I am absolutely enjoying the painting. It is funny though, because I decided the other day that what I should do, is paint some paintings with my daughter involved somehow, and sell those on etsy. I have 2 that we have gotten started with, just little 12in x 12in squares with our hands outlined and some different colors of paint. I have not listed nor completed the paintings though because they are so directly coming from my heart that it hurts me to think about sending them to someone else. Though that is the reason we worked on the paintings together was purely to sell them, and she was supportive and actively participating with it, I have a hard time, because for me they are a part of our story, and they are so personal, so impactful to me.

I’ve been told that I’m lucky, and to a point I agree, in the way that I don’t really ever let any of this ‘really’ get me down. I am going to keep working on these paintings, maybe I’ll have to save the first two, and then make some new ones to sell. I have about 6 more mounted canvas to work with and lots of beautiful paint. I’m going to keep writing until my story comes out as well, which I’m just getting started with but I’m having a blast.

I have a secret too…even though I love my peanuts and honey wrapped in a whole wheat tortilla, (my favorite snack that it turns out I’m allergic to), I am loving my limited diet. Most days I’m only eating 2 meals a day, either because I am full for that long from eating Amaranth Meal and Bacon, or because I can’t find anything to eat and coffee keeps me going for a pretty long time by itself. I’m also lucky because my husband actually is enjoying the challenge of making a more limited selection delicious for all of us. Tonight we had some delicious salmon, rainbow chard, cauliflower with my favorite mushroom dressing on it, and some acorn squash that I put cinnamon and blue agave nector on. That would have been enough tonight, but it wasn’t this time, I was pacing through the kitchen wracking my brain to think of something sweet I could munch on. I was fantasizing about some dried dates or something similar to stave my sweet tooth.

Then…I remembered what I bought, for just this kind of a starving sweet tooth moment. See, there is a store here in Seattle (maybe elsewhere too, I don’t know), called PCC. I have been joking about how it went from my favorite, to my only place to shop for food since learning about my dietary limitations. Last time I was there, though I tried to focus on the staples, this little canister caught my eye…pure organic cocoa powder. So my husband and I dug until we found it, and then I followed the directions using my coconut milk, (almond, soy, and dairy are off limits, rice is limited as well), and then added some blue agave nector to it made the absolute best hot cocoa ever. Even better, as the milk was heating on the stove, I found a knife and cut an avacado in half, which I sprinkled salt on and ate before I was drinking any of the cocoa.

Salty satisfying avacado to prepare for the ultimate chocolate indulgence was amazing. Next time I’m going to add a little cayenne pepper though. I used to go get a good spicy mocha all the time at a local coffee shop here but my wallet has told me to not do that so much. Making it was such an ultimate indulgence that maybe some people feel when they cook as well, just knowing exactly what I was putting together, and knowing exactly what I would/could change if the flavor wasn’t quite right was divine.

It was the perfect nightcap.

About Kristin

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