Has it been a week already?
I can’t tell if it feels like it’s been a few days or a few months. But it is time for an update, so here we go.
We ended week two in the beginnings of Stage 4 of the Intro diet. We were able to have simmered meats and vegetables and were able to successfully introduce ghee. Three of our four children were taking egg yolk and also the whites perfectly. My oldest son began reacting to egg yolk after two days of no reactions. But he was able to eat everything else we had introduced, which was a relief.
This week we introduced quite a few new foods.
I baked an almond bread from almonds that I had soaked overnight and dehydrated (called crispy almonds), eggs, coconut oil, and honey. So this was going to be introducing almonds to our children, as well as eggs that are baked into a bread.
So far, surprisingly, everyone has been able to eat this without a problem. Even my oldest son!
I tested the bread on his wrist (the sensitivity test) and nothing happened. Then we moved forward and gave everyone a bite sized piece of almond bread and watched, and waited.
We skipped a day, because we were going to be out and about that day, but the next day I doled out larger pieces. I tested my oldest son again with the sensitivity test, because of what had happened with the eggs before. No reaction on his skin, so we cautiously gave him another piece.
No reaction in any of the children.
I am hopeful – but I still feel a little burned from last week. I intend to give my oldest the skin test again before feeding him more almond bread. Here’s hoping he can take it well. It might seem strange that he would react to egg yolk but not baked whole eggs, but I’m guessing they are just recognized as two different foods by his body.
Now, when I say there was no reaction, I really mean there was no immediate reaction such as swelling or sneezing or diarrhea or any of the other reactions we’ve had in the past. We’re still watching out for later reactions like rashes or whatnot. But so far, so good.
I am so very thankful – but I honestly don’t know what to think! Will I ever feel like we are in the clear? You’ll know by next week’s update whether or not they started reacting.
I added freshly juiced carrots to our morning routine and increased our probiotic intake. This healing food produced a little more die-off: headaches, fatigue, and breakouts in myself, and fussiness in the little ones and worsened eczema in my second son. Eventually I added a little beet. The eczema is still there, and I’m going to start giving him less juice and see if that helps anything. The die-off is good, but we don’t want to rush it.
It also could be the addition of almonds that is causing the eczema. We’ll cut some things out this week and experiment. He’s not complaining though, and I’m thankful it doesn’t seem to really bother him. But yes, we do want it gone.
Here’s what I learned this week:
GAPS is so very hard.
But I guess I already knew that. These little ones have voracious appetites! I feel like they are going to eat me out of house and home! We go through pounds and pounds of meat a day, and veggies. We eat sooo much and yet still feel hungry. It’s the strangest feeling, and not unique to the GAPS diet. It’s so weird to sit there stuffed to the gills and still want food.
GAPS can be so very confusing.
What stage are we on? When do we move to the next? Should we introduce this or wait until they’re tolerating this or what? I read that some people stay on some stages for up to a year, and then I read not to stay on any one stage longer than a week. Huh?! I find myself rubbing my temples and closing my eyes and trying to make sense of it all – more times a day than I can count.
I have no clue. I just have no clue.
I want to quit. Every day.
I know that I want to quit. I want to be done. I am burned out.
But why, you say? You’ve seen such progress in just a few weeks?
I know . . . I know. But I can’t convey how hard this diet is, especially with four very different little ones and their unique systems. I wake up and cook, do dishes, eat, go start cooking the next meal, do dishes, eat, cook, dishes, eat, and I am doing all this in the wake of a brain fog caused by toxic pathogens dying in my body. It’s HARD, folks. (My husband is a HUGE help, I really can’t stress that enough.)
Maybe if it were just me doing the diet, it would be simpler. I could just kind of eat soup all the time and only have to watch myself. But when there are many of us, I’m juggling everyone’s different bodies and trying to keep everyone on the same stage at the same time. It wears me out. But I know God’s got my back.
Writing is my solace – it’s been so therapeutic to be able to write at the end of the day most days.
So, at this point in the diet, we’ve come too far in intro to be able to quit. I literally can not quit this intro diet without there being health repercussions. We have to continue healing, finish intro and move into Full GAPS. But just know that every day I tell my husband I want to give up. Every day.
And then I see my children eating healthy, nourishing food, packing it away with no complaints, and I marvel. They’re guzzling bone broth and butternut squash soup and mashed cauliflower. I watch these children eating almond bread with eggs, eating spoonful after spoonful of ghee, and I sit back, amazed. It really is worth it. Going into Full GAPS will be so much easier than this.
If you’re reading this and you are considering trying GAPS. . . well, I’m not sure what to tell you right now. I do not want to be dramatic but I need to let you know this diet is hard. It’s confusing. It’s isolating. It’s time-consuming. It’s just plain consuming. I read many different blog posts before the decision to try it and some said the diet was easy, and some said it was the most difficult thing they’ve ever done . . . I’m going to have to side with the difficult one.
Sigh. Pressing on.
Read on for week 4 on the GAPS Intro Diet.