I guess, in many ways, I’m just a typical late twenty-something housewife. That’s what you’d think if you saw me in the grocery store, dragging my three (probably fussy) boys around behind me. What you wouldn’t know from that glance though, is that I’m a certified teacher (who chose to stay home with the kids instead of teaching), I work with the young children at my church, I love to read, I’m a HUGE nerd (sci-fi all the way ;), I have a child with extra needs (I don’t want to say special needs because he needs the exact same things all kids needs; he just needs a little bit more :), and I’m in the progress of creating a healthier life for me and my family.
What does that mean? “Healthier life”? Well for us it means a variety of things.
1) My middle child (currently 2) started receiving services for a slight developmental delay about a year ago. He has problems processing sensory input. He gets overexcited quickly and bangs on things with his head or hands, or uses items (toys, cups, etc) to bang on things. He is what caused me to start my journey living all natural. I had several people suggest cutting out gluten to help with his behavior. So I started researching gluten allergies and their effects. The information I found was contradictory and very passionate for and against going gluten free to manage behaviors. The pediatrician did a blood test for Celiac Disease which was negative. He said I could try going gluten free, but said “there is no medical evidence proving gluten can cause the problems you’ve mentioned”. But wait? What about all the testimonies I had read online? All the moms who’s children with ADHD had seen improvements? I let it go for awhile after pricing gluten free products. Even at our local Aldi’s it was just too expensive. 6 months went by and a friend one day excitedly told me about essential oils that she had gotten and how she thought I should try them. I put them on my Christmas wish list and received some! My husband got Peppermint, Lavender, and Lemon and a friend gave me Ylang Ylang. I experimented with them and loved the smell, but didn’t really know what to do with them. I was later introduced to Young Living and a lady named Sarah came to my church to teach a class on usage and safety. I was amazed at all that the oils could do! I came home and announced to my husband we were “abandoning” modern medicine and treating everything possible with essential oils. Since then I have used oils to help my son calm down when he gets overwhelmed, we’ve successfully treated a double ear infection, lessened pain from a pinched nerve, and we’ve cleared up 3 MRSA spots!
*let me stop and make a disclaimer here. I am NOT anti-medicine, nor am I against visiting the doctor or treating illnesses at the hospital. I simply realized that a lot of things (such as ear infections, the common cold, even MRSA) can be treated with essential oils. Why put medicine in your body when there’s an all natural solution? ?
2) I ordered a starter kit from Young Living as part of my all natural journey. I saw post after post on Pinterest showing how to use all natural items such as baking soda, vinegar, essential oils etc to clean. I got to thinking “I wonder what’s in my household cleaners.” I looked. I was confused (lots of big words I couldn’t pronounce). I researched and read “if you can’t pronounce it, don’t use/eat it. That was enough for me. I tossed the bleach, Windex, 409 and anti-bacterial soap. Remember: if you can’t pronounce it DON’T USE IT! I now use a combination of baking soda and vinegar, mixed with some thieves essential oil for almost ALL of my cleaning purposes.
3) I’ve been doing my changes to an all natural life in slow steps. It’s a complete change of attitude and thought processes. Every time I go to grab my antibacterial wipes I have to stop and remind myself I have another possibility now. I have to make a conscious effort every day to make healthy choices. The next step for my family is healthier eating. My two older boys are relatively picky eaters. No matter how I disguise, masquerade, blend, puree or re purpose vegetables, they know they’re there. Then they either don’t eat, or throw a huge tantrum. It seems the name of the game is “eat or starve”. Hopefully they’ll soon get the hint that we’re no longer succumbing to the “chicken nugget for every meal” demand. I’m working on reading labels and identifying deceitful terms such as yeast extract (which is a substitute term for MSG), foods that may contain GMO’s (genetically modified organism *gasp* **yuck**), as well as foods that contain outrageous amounts of sneaky sugar (anything ingredient ending in -ose is a form of sugar, as well as natural sugary ingredients such as honey). We’re slowly weeding out foods that have ingredients like the ones listed above. And as with #2, IF YOU CAN’T PRONOUNCE IT DON’T EAT IT! That should be a given.
*If you would like more information about GMO’s; what they are and why they’re so bad for us, please visit http://gmo-awareness.com/all-about-gmos/gmo-defined/
4) The last part of my healthier life journey is being more active and involved with my family. This section alone could be its own blog. For us, this encompasses more DIY projects, more time spent outdoors playing and gardening, more time doing messy things like crafts (I inwardly shiver at this, because I can’t stand making messes with art projects), and because I’m a certified teacher-turned stay at home mom, I’ve decided to homeschool my children. Not just because I have the certification, but partly because I wanted to make sure their education was done in a way that I approved of. We have several other homeschooling families in our area to spend time with, and my children are all extremely active at church. Don’t worry; they get enough social time 🙂
Throughout the pages on this website you’ll find articles related to each of my four points. I pray that they’ll bless you and help you on your own journey. Feel free to contact me with any questions, comments or recommendations for future articles or guest writers. Thanks!