After 575 days on GAPS, Carter is offically healed. Now he eats everything!

After 575 days on GAPS, Carter is offically healed. Now he eats everything! Well almost everything! He's still eating a real food/non processed diet for the most part and we will stay away from soy in all forms and cauliflower, mainly because Mommy is still scared of those foods. We are sticking with the 80/20 ratio of foods because now he can indulge in a cheat every once and awhile and he's just fine!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

One Year!

October 28, 2011: Carter’s first day of GAPS. That was almost a year ago! So much has happened in that year. Today this is an update for all of you who have hoped with us along the way, and it is hope for so many of you who are starting this GAPS journey.

This past year has been a whirlwind of changes.  When we started this change for Carter, who was 2 and a half at the time, we had no idea how long it would take or what it would do to us. Would it bring us together or would it rip us all apart? Those first 3 weeks were some of the scariest days of my life. The fear that I had made the wrong choice was tangible. I swear it sat there in the room with us.  I wasn’t sure he would ever eat normally. He ate the same 3 things day in and day out. Week after week. Month after month. Shortly before starting GAPS, he stopped growing and gaining weight. He didn’t make any changes for a YEAR! He wasn’t talking like he should have been. His coordination was lacking.

So what did we do? We waited. We tried adding in GAPS approved veggies and they failed. We tried changing up his diet at all, and it failed. And that’s the way it needed to be for him. That was what his body needed. How I wish I had trusted and listened to what his body was telling me, in those early months. Sure having a 2 year old whose diet was so very limited was hard. Trying and pulling foods over and over was hard too. So I stopped. He was eating pumpkin, butternut squash, zucchini, beef, lamb and wild game. And that was it. And I didn’t try more. I let his body lead me. We did this for months. And months. And I stopped listening to people tell me that I wasn’t doing GAPS the right way. Rule number one of GAPS, it is an individual diet. You have to follow the stages in a way that works for you. I ignored the doctors who insisted time and again that his body needed formula. And then something happened . . . he grew! An inch in 3 months! Without commercial formula. Without growth hormones. Without synthetic vitamins. With nothing more than real food.

And something else happened. I got brave with food.  Something in me, something in him, told me to try. When he asked for foods that were somewhere, anywhere on the GAPS approved list, I gave them to him. And his body didn’t react. He didn’t shut down. He slept. He smiled. He pooped. And he ate more. When he asked for potatoes, I gave him some.  And nothing happened.

We are going at a steady pace, allowing his diet to expand. He’s eating broccoli, turnip, apples, blueberries, strawberries, hot dogs, carrots, watermelon, an occasional potato, and bananas; along with all the other foods he was eating. He still loves his broth. He still loves his meat. And he loves that all this food is HIS!

GAPS has given me the gift of really learning and understanding his body. Carter still sneaks food, and when he does, he gets a rash on the back of his neck. And he gets a little backed up. But he DOESN”T vomit. He DOESN’T get upper respiratory infections. He DOESN’T have 20 trips to the potty. He DOESN”T have bleeding, burning skin.

So what does this all mean? It means GAPS worked. It means GAPS works. It means that I may soon be able to say that Carter once HAD FPIES. It means that we are going to try dairy again soon.

If you are thinking about trying GAPS, do it!! If you’re lucky enough to have found it while your little one is still a baby, even better! Try the homemade formulas or Baby GAPS, if your little one is old enough.

If you have started GAPS with your child, and you are still in the darkness and confusion that GAPS brings, DO NOT GIVE UP! Don’t let the doctors or your family or your friends or the stranger in the store tell you what’s best for your child. You know what’s best your baby. You really really do.

For every excuse, every road block to GAPS, there is an answer. Once you make the choice, the answers will come. I have learned that Home has nothing to do with the walls that surround you. I have found joy in feeding my family real food. I know what it means to be Strong now. I have felt what it means to be truly, unconditionally loved.

For me, I had to hit rock bottom with Carter’s health before we started GAPS. I knew that Carter was going to die if we did nothing. I was afraid GAPS would kill him with all its meat and bone broth. So what did I have to lose in trying? If I didn’t try, we would lose Carter.  If I did try, he might live, might grow, might thrive. And he did. And he has. And he is. He really is. It’s still a journey and it may always be, but now I think I know where we are going.