Monday, March 19, 2012

Our new diet plan

A little update on Jacob.... Today we have started his 3 week trial on the gluten free casein free diet. After reading blogs and researching the topic I have concluded that I simply have to try him on it. 3 weeks will allow all gluten and casein to be completely out of his body. If we see dramatic results we will know immediately that it works, if not we will introduce one back at a time and if we see negative results then we will eliminate them again. Most children who have intolerance will have immediate and dramatic results with dietary intervention, but not all. I have also read that many people (not just autistic) have food sensitivities they aren't even aware of and that the majority of autistic people (70%) do have sensitivities. Gluten, soy and casein cause opiate like peptides in their bodies. I am a skeptic about this diet and I am ensuring that Jacob will be getting proper nutrition on it, but I just had to try it. So please be in prayer for us because if you know anyone who has ever even tried simply gluten free, then you know how difficult it is. Casein is a milk derivative and is in dairy and just about everything non natural. Anyways, we would sure love the prayers. I am also trying to get the rest of my family on a mostly natural diet, but am going at it a lot slower. Its a step by step process and I am trying not to make food the focus of my life.

Also, I have another praise. I posted on my facebook that we were looking for a used Ipad to purchase for Jacob's therapy and a couple from our church has donated one for him!!! Again, amazed by God's blessings and people willing to help us. We would never in a thousand years ask for a free IPad or ever expect someone to give us one, so we are just put it simply. Lorie told me that she would enjoy the Ipad for herself, but after she read what we were using it for she decided to give it to us. People like that amaze me. First, Jeanine sends us Jacob's weighted blanket and lap pad and now this. It's strange but its hard to accept these things without feeling guilty. We aren't starving. We can afford to live, yes medical bills and therapy and all that are much to much to afford, but even still its hard to accept these things? Well, I just keep telling myself that its not about me its all about God. They felt lead to give and who am I to not accept? Not to mention we really believe in the benefits these things will have on Jacob. After that seminar on the Ipad and many uses for autistic kids we knew we would have to somehow get one. God is so AWESOME. Why do I ever doubt?

I begin my training with Mindy from Houston ABA on April 2nd and 3rd. She will then come and train me more on April 11th after I have had some practice. Unfortunately, I don't know how much I will be able to explain on my blog because of contracts and privacy with her company, but I will be able to post his progress. Also, if there are techniques that I think would be helpful for you moms out there to know I will ask her permission to post. I know we will begin PECS (picture exchange communication system) right away so hopefully we can get him to be able to communicate simple things, like when he wants his milk and when he is hungry. I really excited to get started again.

This past weekend Cret and I took all 3 kids on their first mission trip. Families and people from our church went door to door inviting people to a local church there that was wanting to get the community back in and worshiping God. If anyone knows me, they know that I am terrified to speak in front of people. So for the first street Cret and my daughter Jordan did all the talking and I just stood there smiling and praying for the community. After one house my daughter said, "Mom, come on! You talk at the next house." Cret quickly chimed in and said, "She will when she is ready." He's always got my back. HAHA

But then it occurred to me.... It's not about me. Why do I always make everything about me? This is about God and showing Christ's love to these people and this community and my children. I have to be the example that I want for my daughter. Its not about me. So I told Cret I will knock on the next door with Jordan, but I didn't want him to watch me. There's just something about someone standing there watching, it just freaks me out. Soon, after speaking with these people I did quit making it about me and built up the courage to talk to them no matter who was around.

Now, I don't say this to say that I made any huge impact, but I do say this because I got to see my children excited to run up to the next door and tell people about the church and hand them the fliers. I got to see the direct effect it had on them to see Cret and I setting an example and not being fearful. It wasn't about us, it was about GOD. Sometimes, you have to just get over yourself in order to allow God to use you.

So how does this relate to Jacob?  Well, I have to stop making Jacob's diability all about me. Just like on the mission trip I have to stop thinking about my feelings and start thinking about my purpose.  How do I make Jacob's autism all about me?  I worry, I'm fearful, I get sad and scared, I don't trust God sometimes and am overcome with stress.  I make it all about what I can do for Jacob or how I can better help him.  I turn my research and therapy into an idol.  I let it take over my life sometimes.  I know that my worry is in direct relation to my amount of time I spend in the Word and my faith.  I thought I was in the Bible enough, but it has become increasingly clear to me that I'm not.  I need to do all things for His glory.  I have to make Jacob's therapy all about God.  How do I do that?  I know it needs to start by rejoicing in God while I'm researching, but not at the expense of Bible study time, when I put Jacob on this diet, I can not let food run my life, I have to pray for Jacob and healing, but not let depression and anxiety overwhelm me.  I am to be the best mom I can, while keeping my priority Jesus.  I have to get over myself and see what God wants for me in this situation. 

I read a quote from an actress long ago
"It is a lonely existence to be a child with a disability which no-one can see or understand, you exasperate your teachers, you disappoint your parents, and worst of all you know that you are not just stupid." - Susan Hampshire

After reading this I gave it some thought.  I bet more disabled children feel this then we are aware.  Why would they feel this?  Even if I am constantly loving on Jacob, but am stressed, even if I sing to him and tell him I love him, but am always sad and tired, he will notice.  I truly know that the only way I can rejoice and be glad and have peace regardless of my circumstances is in Jesus.  Its an unexplainable joy, no matter what is happening.  The more I read His word and promises and focus on Him, the less I focus on me and my sorrow.  I don't ever want Jacob to feel the way this woman felt.  I want him to see a joy in me that he knows is deep and real and sincere. 

To the moms that read this and that email me:

I want to encourage you to engulf yourself in the Bible. Seek God and He will give you rest. You are a strong mother, and God knew exactly what He was doing in blessing you with this child. He knew exactly what He was doing when creating your child. God can use your child's disability for His glory! You are not alone out there and its so easy to feel that way. Reach out and let people help you. Let others show you God's love and show others the same. Begin a journey with me to make our children's disabilities something positive and not about us. Let's bring glory to God through their disabilities and through everything else we do. We are not alone in this.   And to those moms who don't have kids with disabilities...Won't you commit to pray for or encourage a mom with a special needs child?  Being a mom in general is a difficult job.  Its rewarding, but its hard.  Being a mom of a child with a disability is gut wrenchingly hard and difficult to put into words.  I am committing to pray for my mommy friends with and without children with disabilities.  Thank you for your constant support and love.  Don't know where I would be without those unexpected emails and phone calls.  I only hope I can be as encouraging to others. 

Father in Heaven,
   Thank you for being so holy and so merciful and so sovereign in all things.  Thank you so much for my children, my husband, Jacob's autism, our Church family, and our friends.  Thank you for dying on the cross and paying the price we could never pay.  Thank you for your GRACE.  Help me to see things through your eyes. Help me to stop making everything ALL about me.  I pray for direction in Jacob's situation to know how his autism can be used for you and to help me to balance my time so that I am giving him what he needs while keeping YOU my priority. 

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