Lost Sheep

“The lost sheep are not just the people who don’t come to church…The lost sheep is a mother who goes down into the valley of dark shadows to bring forth children. The lost sheep is a young person, far away from home faced with loneliness and temptation. The lost sheep is a person who has just lost a critically needed job; a business person in financial distress; a new missionary in a foreign culture; a man just called to be a bishop; a married couple who are misunderstanding each other; a grandmother whose children are forgetting her. I am the lost sheep. You are the lost sheep. ‘All we like sheep have gone astray.'” -Bruce C. Hafen

“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” -Jesus Christ

It’s Your Diet

One month and 10 days ago, I started this pretty restrictive diet, accompanied with taking what feels like hundreds of supplements a day. To tell you what I can eat would be shorter than telling you what I can’t eat. Think of Adam and Eve’s diet, and there you go. No, not really, I can’t have fruit. The fruit is forbidden. See what I did there?

It has been easy in a way, because of the results, but also very challenging to keep on feeding my family, who are not on this same diet, all the while feeding myself the limited foods I can eat. Which it’s not crazy limited, it’s just not what I was eating before.

I didn’t start this diet for weight loss, although, that has been a bonus. I started this to help heal myself from my mysterious breathing issues that has all the doctors scratching their head’s.

One day, I woke up and could not take a full deep breath. It was as if my lungs had reached their full capacity and they would shoot right back down like a rubber band before I got any sense of relief. The fear of not knowing how bad my breathing would actually get caused me to have panic attacks, which did not help the situation. I have been dealing with this for 3 years!!! Imagine not being able to take a deep breath for 3 years. I stopped working out, hiking, riding my bike, running, walking up steps, I felt like I was a 90 year old women. I was CONSTANTLY tired and stopped doing any activity that caused even a little exhaustion.

After going to doctor after doctor and hearing most of them, not all of them, but most of them say that, due to me having 6 kids, it’s probably stress and anxiety causing my breathing issues.

Yea, all of sudden, I realized that I have 6 kids and started panicking…for 3 years straight…while on vacations…without my kids…while relaxing at a spa…I mean really?

I quit asking the “experts” and decided to go a different route after meeting this group of alternative healthcare professionals in Alaska. I told them my health issues and they said with a surety, we can help you. You mean to tell me after 3 years of doctor hopping and loads of medical procedures you can help me? With food and supplements? Yep!!

First, let me just tell you what I ate before. I am not making this up and I know it’s gross.

Every morning I drank a Fit Aid (recovery drink, even though I wasn’t recovering from anything other than waking up.) and ate brown sugar pop tarts sometimes with butter on them. For lunch I would have hot cheetos and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, or Wendys or McDonalds or Five Guys. For dinner I would eat at another fast food place or restaurant and then every night around 1a.m. I would make myself nachos and eat those with hot cheetos and drink 2-3 glasses of chocolate milk. Now don’t call CPS just yet, I fed my kids totally different foods because I didn’t want them to eat unheathly. As I am writing this I realize how dumb it was for me to eat like this and it was only a matter of time until I had some major health issues. The detox coming off this junk was 1000 times more painful than when I got Covid.

Now, I eat a lot of veggies, no fruit because I have too much yeast in my body. I eat chicken, turkey, fish, and I can have organic red meat once a week. Luckily, I can have almond butter and a certain type of yogurt to curb my sweet tooth. There are times where I have thought, I just want a bacon cheeseburger with fries so bad, I am done doing this diet! Then I take in a deep long breath, with full relief, and remember how worth this program is. Within a week I could take a deep breath, I was off my ADD medicine and had more energy than I had “pre breathing” issues. I am working out again and hiking. This program saved me from a very depressing immobile life.

I am no expert, but I am going to chalk it up to maybe being super inflamed. There was no room for my lungs to fully expand. That is my non-professional opinion. I honestly don’t know, but I do know I can breath again.

I have also learned how to make good, healthy, food for my family and I have exercised some incredible self-control. I have 2 more months of this program and everyday I remind myself how great I feel and to keep pushing forward. Even if I am drooling over cookies and brownies. It all comes down to how much you value your health.

Update on “The Big Move”

We finally finished moving everyone around! After two full days of moving and cleaning we finally got it done! I feel so relieved about her being closer to us and not hiding away in her room 24/7. She loves her room and is happy. Thank you for answering my prayers Lord. Kingston is also very happy in his new suite. I would show pictures but I didn’t get any and I’m too lazy to get up. Maybe one day.

The Great Move

Zara’s new room

When you pray for an answer from God, do you listen to the answer?

Sometimes we pray and we want an answer so badly, but we forget to listen for the answer, or we don’t really like the answer so we keep praying for the same thing. Praying for your weaknesses to become strengths and then not wanting any challenges is like wanting to get fit, but just standing in the gym looking like a creep. There is some action that needs to take place in order for your prayer to be answered. There is also humility that needs to be had for your answer to be fulfilled.

About a week ago I was praying for guidance with my 16 year old daughter. She is smart and beautiful but needs a little more guidance right now as she navigates through high school and friends. I also needed guidance so I went to my parent, in prayer.

I prayed and received an answer that I really didn’t want to “hear.” I thought, that is a lot of work and she is going to be flipping mad! She is already mad and I don’t even know why?! This isn’t going to go over well.

The answer I received… was to move her out of her basement room, that has a bathroom in it mind you, to upstairs. To upstairs with her dad and I and her 2 little sisters who love her so much that they annoy the ever living crap out of her (6 & 4). To make the situation a little bit worse, she would be going from having her own private bathroom to sharing a Jack and Jill bathroom with her little sisters. (insert face slap)

So as you can see, I did not want to listen to the answer I so earnestly prayed for. But it kept daunting me as I continued to pray for guidance. You already got the answer Aricka, either listen, or deal with it.

So, about a month ago, I casually mentioned it to her and she casually wanted to rip my head off and asked me, why am I ruining her life and wanting to make it harder for her?

Well, you know, I am a little bored right now. So I thought I would: completely pack up the girls playroom FULL of toys and a huge playhouse that you have to disassemble to get out the door, pack up all their toys in the closet stacked on shelves, without an inch of shelf space to be seen. Then move all my workout equipment so that I can now make that the girls playroom area, and then help you pack up your room, take apart your very heavy wooden bed, move up your even heavier dresser, all while you plotting to blow up the world, pack up your bathroom and your closet, that are both packed to the max.

Yea, I need a hobby,

After that exhausting converstion, I let the moving thing drop for a bit because as you can see, it was not just an easy move. Then finally, just yesterday actually, I felt this desire and determination to make it happen. So while she was at school, I started packing up the little girls play room. I left her room alone. I packed all day and tried to find spots for some of the girls toys. Which meant, I had to clean out their bedroom closet. I cleaned the shared bathroom and made it look cute, so when Zara saw it, it was a little more inviting.

When Zara got home I said, come look at the girls bathroom. She came in and said, wow it looks so cute and clean!

Phew…thank you. Prayer in my heart, prayer in my heart.

Then I said, I wanted it to be cute for you. I then sheltered the vital parts of my body. But no blow, instead she said, and I quote, “I am actually excited to move up here.” Who are you and what have you done with my daughter? Are you excited to be up here because you plan on stabbing me in my sleep and now you don’t have to climb stairs to do it? Are you excited because you are closer to the kitchen? This was the complete opposite reaction then when I brought it up the first time.

Nope, she said, this room has better lighting for Instagram posts.

I’LL TAKE IT!!

So here we are today, the girls playroom is emptied and cleaned. They now have an extensive part of the basement dedicated to their play things. Kingston, who kind of got the shaft on rooms when we moved in, will now be moving into Zara’s old room. All of my workout equipment with be moving into Kingston’s old room and Zara has brought up 4 pairs of pants… What can I say, her excitement didn’t mean speedily.

So remember, when you are praying for help with something tough, you may not like the answer but God knows best. He knows the bigger picture that we are not seeing yet. Just rip the bandaid off and deal with the answer. If you want the help, take the heavenly guidance. Have some faith and trust in his words. Or in this case, have a lot of faith and trust!