Here is a short version of my story on how I overcame a health crisis in my life, which is what prompted me to hitch right on to Kathryn Treat’s wagon. Her story in a way is my story and the story of so many of you out there struggling just to stay alive literally. So here goes…
My name is Shirley Slaughter @sharrislaughter in pursuit of good health. I want to talk a little about the health issues I had to overcome before I even thought about writing and publishing a book. When you are starting out in life you are idealistic, and you can’t wait for your life to start. You make mistakes along the way and you run into roadblocks sometimes. You never think going down life’s road that you will be hit with a major health issue. In my case it turned into a crisis.
Our children were all grown up when I was hit from all fronts starting with drug interaction problems and agonizing side-affects; allergies; sensitivities to chemicals & fragrances and foods; hot flashes too early (that’s another story). I am lactose intolerant; had migraines & sinus headaches, and on and on. I said to myself, “Is this all there is?” You finish one phase of your life, looking forward to the next and then boom, you are knocked down by one health issue after another. Not only did I have drug interaction problems and side-affects, but I was allergic to foods and my hormones were causing early hot flashes starting (can you believe?) in my late thirties. That’s right, the decisions you make in your early life can cause severe consequences for your future. And all it takes is a heavy dose of stress to trigger the symptoms.
Imagine sitting in the doctor’s office cramping something awful, running to the restroom constantly, and not once did the medical staff ask what was wrong. I was clearly in trouble. I started to cry right there in the waiting room. I was horrified that they didn’t pay any attention to what was going on. When my turn came they barely noticed my distress. If you can’t get help in the doctor’s office then we are in big trouble. It took me fifteen years and lots of out-of-pocket expense to get a handle on what was ailing me.
I had to stop eating certain foods (wheat products); dairy products (took me several years to really get what that meant) but when I eliminated it for almost a year I could see positive results in my health. Had osteoporosis in my lower spine; severe hot flashes; sinus and migraine headaches; chronic bronchitis; diverticulosis; irritable bowel; sudden weight gain and loss. I had slowly spiraled into a medical health crisis with allergies of every kind. I still maintained an appetite but I couldn’t hold food in my stomach. As soon as I ate something, I was eliminating just as fast. It was horrible and no medical doctor had a clue as to what was going on with me. I was that one percent they had to contend with. I started firing doctors left and right.
And so I was completely on my own. I was an activist around this time, and a group of us went down to the old train station (that we were trying to save) to pull weeds and clean up debris. Someone in the group asked me why I was wearing a mask. I told him I had problems with all types of chemicals smells, dust, mold, pollen, anything that was irritating to my sinus cavities and lungs. He gave me a card to the Detroit Wholistic Center for a Reflexology treatment. Didn’t know what that was. It took me a year to finally inquire about it and at that time was offered a colonics treatment also. I said, “What is that?” And was told it was a colon cleansing and that I could come to the office for a tour and a presentation about the process. I went and it eventually cured my colon irritability. The elimination of dairy products got rid of all my sinus congestions and headaches. It was a miracle to me but it was really all about using your common sense that God gave you and applying it to your everyday life with all its complexities.
The road was not an easy one because I was still having digestive problems. Went down to the basement and pulled out the Juiceman Jr. and starting juicing. Made sure I used only organic fruits and vegetables. Another miracle occurred. I became vibrant for lack of a better word. My skin and eyes and hair came back alive. I discovered enzymes and over time I got a handle on my health issues and was able to function at a better than expected decent life where I could get my creative juices flowing.
Eventually, I got my bachelor’s degree, wrote a book(s), and became a speaker.
I can relate to Kathryn’s plight and what she had to go through with her life and death struggles to stay alive and lead some semblance of a normal life. Thank God she was able to write her story down, something I have been meaning to do forever.
Reading Allergic to Life gave me another perspective on handling a crisis. It also made me count my blessings that I did find a way out of my nightmare. Not to mention that I am now motivated to write my own story. I had to get Our Lady of Victory, the Saga of an African-American Catholic Community written and out of the way because I was also obsessed with preserving our history in this little catholic community which I was a part of. Getting my health back gave me the time to research and write this story.
To everyone else going through a health issue, I say fight for your life and you will find angels helping you along the way.
Website blog: http://rememberourladyofvictory.com/
Shirley, I forwarded your medical story to my Twitter and Facebook pages.
Thank you Camille for sharing this.
No one’s illness is ever going to be the same because we are different people. We reacted differently to the same kind of environmental issues. But the commonality is in the fact that we got a negative reaction to the exposure and dealt with it in our own way. That is why I was attracted to your story. It is why other people will be drawn in to your story. It is why we have a connection. You are motivating me to get on the stick and do what I had planned on doing but never got around to it, and that is telling my story. I thank you for that.
Shirley, Thanks for sharing your story via written word. So many people need this message.
They sure do. They need to know that they are not by themselves.
It is important to look for the angels along the way. Thank you for sharing your story. While our stories are not exactly the same, the seriousness of them and the allergic reactions give us a kindred friendship.