Hi friends! I really hope that you’re all managing okay & being gentle with yourselves.
It’s been a little while since I’ve been on here, but I wanted to report back and make a post detailing the progress I’ve made since January ‘19 in hopes that it may benefit some of you. Heck, even if one of you take something away from this, then mission accomplished.
So back in January I was at my worst and my symptoms were becoming so unbearable that, truthfully, I was feeling deeply suicidal. I was sobbing at every given moment, barely getting a wink of sleep, completely unable to eat without being in agony and generally felt that my life was over and my suffering would be eternal. Dramatic, yes, but it felt so real at the time. I felt that the person I once was, who I actually liked, was withering away.
In February, my symptoms do what they often like to do, which is ease up a little bit, allowing me to perform tasks such as washing myself with slightly more ease. I was by no means better, but I’d take whatever I could get. During this time I made the decision to start doing some extensive research. I’d given up on searching for FND specifically as we all know how little information there is on the web.
I came across a lot of different information, all beneficial. I’ve talked here before, briefly, about discovering Anthony William the Medical Medium. I purchased his book about healing from chronic and mystery illness. Read it in a single sitting and felt like a light had been switched on in my broken little brain.
I started following his protocol. I was already following a vegan diet for a couple years and vegetarian for over a decade, but quickly realised it was time to cut out anything processed. This includes (almost) anything that comes in a packet essentially, as well as oils, natural flavourings, citric acid, gluten, MSG and more. Basically, a fully plant based, whole foods diet. I also started drinking celery juice first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and have incorporated juicing and fasting into my life.
I also done some research into alkalinising my body. I’m having a huge intake of fruits which have had the biggest impact for me. Sometimes I’ll eat raw, but not permanently - just incorporating raw foods into my diet. A huge amount of leafy greens. Less fats, but I’m enjoying avocados as my main source of fat. I also stopped drinking tap and bottled water and got a water distiller. I’ve dramatically increased my water intake. I’m taking digestive enzymes daily and am looking into incorporating sea-moss and some other herbs and supplements too.
I’ve made some changes for my mental health too, after reading a lot about the mind-body connection. This is worth reading about. There’s also a documentary on Netflix called Heal, which doesn’t provide answers necessarily, but which had an impact on my feelings towards trying to get better. Some things I’ve incorporated for mental clarity:
- Daily journalling, not just writing down symptoms, which I felt was fuelling my focus on them in the end. I write down what I’m grateful for, affirmations for each day, what I’ve done in order to help myself, even if it’s something tiny like managing to wash myself.
- Practicing gratitude. Partially related to journalling, sure, but taking the time to think of what I’m thankful for in this life, even when I feel worthless, like I’m suffering, and undeserving of not being sick. It turns out, there’s always something to be grateful for. Family, friends, somebody on the internet who makes you feel less alone. Your pet, some music, a warm bath. The first bit of solid sleep you’ve managed in weeks, fresh water, food on your plate. The sun shining. Anything at all.
- Meditation. This is an important one. I kept convincing myself I couldn’t meditate because my symptoms were overwhelming, painful, uncomfortable and impossible to ignore. But I kept at it and realised I didn’t need to be free from any of those feelings in order to get the benefits of meditation. Meditation can start to help alleviate some chronic pain, as well as help to overcome your negative thought processes. I feel more connected to my body again, and less like I’m against it, or it’s against me. I’ve realised we’re a team and that my body doesn’t want to be sick and that’s it doing everything it can to function normally.
- Grounding. Trying to get outside even for a moment and just get some sunlight on you. Try being barefoot and feeling connected for just a moment. Keep trying it as much as you’re able to. Perhaps I sound like a tree hugger (I do like a good tree), but after doing some research, I’m solidly set on grounding being an integral part of healing and even just coping in our lives.
Folks, I cannot believe the changes. The progress I’ve made is undeniable. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not cured! Not by any means - but I’m on the road to healing, I can feel it. MM says it can take around 2 years to heal from neurological issues & to heal the nervous system. It’s only been a couple months, but here’s some of the progress I’ve made:
- My digestion has improved to the point that I can thoroughly enjoy food again.
- My bowel movements have normalised and flow easily and are regular. No more diarrhoea.
- No more bladder dysfunction.
- Less head and eye pain.
- No more earache or tinnitus.
- 95% of my tingling has stopped. I get it for about a minute every now and then, but it’s decreased dramatically.
- My heart has normalised. I am no longer taking medication to slow my heart rate as it is naturally functioning normally. Less palpitations, less chest pain. I still get some pain, but it’s so rare.
- My foot pain that was preventing me from being able to go out, walk normally/comfortably or take part in things I used to enjoy has become much more bearable. I can now walk with much ease and have enjoyed numerous nature walks ever since and feel like I can say YES! whenever somebody wants me to go out with them. The pain went from a 9/10 to a 3/10 - not perfect, but wow, I’m happy with that.
- No more nausea or appetite loss. No more vomiting.
- No more globus sensation, which was upsetting me a lot when I had it. It made swallowing water uncomfortable and I felt like I couldn’t breathe properly.
- Less breathlessness. Yesterday I done my first 15 minutes of actual, intentional gentle exercise. I’m going to slowly build up and get myself strong again.
- Less numbness. I can feel all my fingers, toes & legs. Sometimes I’ll get a little spot of numbness on a random part of my body, like on my head, but being able to actually feel my limbs again is heaven on Earth.
- No more stiffness. My jaw was especially stiff and painful and that’s gone now. Sometimes I get a little stiffness in my neck/shoulders, but it’s improving.
- I’m no longer struggling with heat intolerance or excessive sweating. My body odour doesn’t smell as bad anymore and my body stays cleaner for longer.
- Not entirely relevant, but my hair is healthier, shinier and has had a massive growth spurt which everybody has noticed.
- Less mouth and tongue sores.
- My hands and feet are no longer ice cold 24/7.
- My internal tremors have completely gone. I never shake anymore.
- Less heartburn/acid reflux.
- Feeling of pressure in my eyes has subsided.
- The painful bruised feeling I had over my body has gone.
- Less itching, but I still get some. It’s not driving me crazy anymore.
- No more burning sensations.
It’s been crazy. I’m so happy. The reality is that it’s going to be a bumpy road. My symptoms have not been entirely alleviated. I still get some redness specifically over my face/cheeks and on my right arm sometimes. A little bit of itching. I still get some unusual sensations on my scalp, for example, a little tingle that makes me scratch my head and then afterwards I can still feel where my fingers were, as if they’re still there on my scalp. I’m not getting headaches anymore, but I’ll get the odd sharp pain in my head, it’s just that it doesn’t bother me or actually have an effect on my daily life at this stage. I’ve lost 2 stone in weight, but INTENTIONALLY, not because my brain is malfunctioning. I want to lose some more weight and get myself down to a healthier one and start building some muscle. I have less weakness now and am prepared to make myself stronger, fitter and faster. These changes have allowed me to get to a stage in my life where that feels achievable.
Intermittent fasting has been a huge help. Many of my issues subsided through fasting. There’s so much more I need to share but this post is long enough. If anybody has any questions please feel free to ask.
By no means am I saying any of you will benefit the way I have, but I refuse to sit here and give in. When I read posts on here, hearing how you’re all suffering, I can’t bear it. I have many doctors and nurses within my family, but it’s clear that medical professionals do not have the answers yet. I will not wait around for them to figure it out.
I also want to say cannabis helps hugely for specific symptoms. CBD too. Those of you struggling with tremors & seizures, stomach pain, nausea & appetite loss - look into it. It won’t work for all of us, but it may work for some. It’s worth a shot.
Perhaps I’ll come back here and tell you things got bad again, or maybe I’ll come back and tell you I’m not sick anymore. We’ll see. But I’m so grateful that I’ve had this opportunity to feel like myself again. Even if it’s temporary, it’s been worth all the effort.
Much love, friends ❤️
EDIT: There is more information in the comments if any of you require it!