Feeling Well Feels Funny & Fantastic

Dear Audy,

Last week I proclaimed my intention to do nothing but continue and improve. I am pretty darn proud of myself because I have managed to do just that! Not to say the week didn’t bring its challenges, but I am learning to manage these so much more effectively than any Caf before the 2011 version.

It has been nearly a month since I decided to trial Paleo eating and the results have been fabulous. I’m no longer craving carbohydrates and the overall amount that I am eating seems to have levelled out a bit. When I first began the diet change, I found myself eating a lot more (of Paleo friendly foods) to combat the cravings. Now I am finding it easier to recognise when I am hungry and what I am hungry for.

You might be surprised to hear that this style of eating has not actually felt restrictive at all. In my lifetime I have been vegetarian, dairy free, gluten free and both of those last two together. As a vegetarian I felt lethargic and sickly and quit after 3 years. The others felt like diets. I felt like I was missing out. I was always having to check the ingredients in food and come up with substitutes.

I think it’s the lack of substitutes that makes Paleo eating so easy. I am not looking for gluten free alternative grain products, I am simply not eating any of them.

And I know what all the ingredients in my meals are, I cut them up and put them in myself! I even cooked my first Indian style curry. I actually know what’s in that sauce and it’s all good stuff.

I don’t feel sick in the stomach nearly as often as I used to. I had come to accept a level of gastrointestinal pain as par for the course with CRPS and associated medication. It’s wonderful to discover that I can change this by only changing what I put in my mouth.

I am not having sweat attacks as frequently. For years, it has been quite normal for me to suddenly break out in a sweat from head to toe, often in the middle of the night. I understand from having chatted with so many in the chronic pain community that this is a very common symptom.

Turns out, this was probably more related to the sugar in my diet and heightened by my sensitivity, rather than being purely a symptom of the CRPS itself. The only sweat attacks that I’ve had in recent weeks have been directly after I’ve had a wheaty, sweetie treat (like birthday cake).

The weather has been doing that Melbourne thing, four seasons in one day and all that. The fairly sudden changes in temperature and humidity are effecting me, but not to the degree that they have in the past. I have been able to adjust my activity around my body’s changing limits without needing to stop completely.

I even had a burning flare subside within 24 hours! In my hands, of all places, where the burning has been known to last for weeks and months with no respite. 24 hours. Brilliant.

I am feeling my body start to change and get stronger. I actually have some sort of muscle happening in my thighs. Amazing.

I have hardly felt anxious at all, even during the flaring. At times when I have felt myself going into a stress response, I have been able to avert it before crisis mode sets in. I suspect that sugar was getting in the way of me achieving a peaceful mind. All of those highs and crashes…just not good. It’s easier to find perspectives that aren’t upsetting without cravings, that I didn’t even know I was having, telling me how I feel.

I still have constant pain, but it’s mostly less than it was. I still flare up, get stabbing pains, swelling and burning, but all to lesser degrees. I am still working on pacing more efficiently to help smooth these out.

I am not yet healed, but I am healing. I didn’t need to find the right doctor, I needed to find the right perspective. I needed to find confidence in myself and learn enough to feel knowledgable (an illusion, we can always know more).

I always thought of myself as open minded, but I’m only just beginning to discover what that really means. It’s like a clear day after years of fog. Beautiful.

Love & Mangoes,

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  • 12 thoughts on “Feeling Well Feels Funny & Fantastic

    1. Ross

      So glad that I’m able to get back on your site again. It must have been an issue with my browser. I’m so happy to see that your managing better through diet. In dealing with our CRPS this is what makes things so unique because each person is so different in what they need. I tried diet and it greatly improved my symptoms. Now with my implant the symptoms are even better. I might be coming down your way in the next year. My brother in-laws company is moving him there for two years. So my wife and I want to go while we have a free house to stay in. He’ll be living in Melbourne.

      1. Hayley Cafarella Post author

        Welcome back, Ross! It’s so great that your implant is helping get the symptoms down even further. That will be awesome if you are able to come to Melbourne, being well enough to take holidays has to be one of the best things that we aim for. It’d be great to meet you! :)

    2. Maria

      Good girl! I am so proud! Remember, the more raw fruits and veggies you eat the better. That’s where all the anti-inflammatory properties come from (think nature’s advil), and it is also how to keep your body alkaline. Bodily acidity is the first stage leading to disease. It will off set any acidic food you eat. People like us need to shoot for 80% alkaline foods to heal.

      Keep up the great work!

      1. Hayley Cafarella Post author

        Thanks, Maria! We are incorporating a few more salads into the regime so lots of raw veggies to help me, I am just feeling so much better! Even having a bit of physical setback is not effecting me as much as it used to. I don’t even want sugar anymore! Fabulous 😀 xx

    3. Della

      Ya caught me with the bit about not sweating as much… I Really need to consider my sugar intake! lol I never would have tied the two together. I’m such a sugar addict and it’s a struggle to break that.

      1. Hayley Cafarella Post author

        It was a bit of a surprise to me too! I have had those sweat attacks for most of my life, they just seemed to get worse with CRPS. I am not missing them at all! ;P xx

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