Fulenn's MS page New: before/after pics on page 15

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Sat Jul 07, 2012 11:18 am

Thanks for sharing all this, fulenn-

What a wonderful thing you've been doing to teach children how to grow and eat vegetables!! That makes me smile so broadly. :D

Your kale looks great! and 75 cents a bunch!! I am jealous. I'm about to go to FM here and look for cherries and green onions. I have red russian kale in my garden, tons of little baby leaves (since I don't have the energy--or the heart--to thin everything). Works fine. :)

Nice to know we are both teachers. It sounds like you're doing such good work. I taught at university level, comp classes, and also beginning poetry workshops, which were my joy.

Have a great weekend, and thanks again for your journal. Glad we could connect through it.

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby fulenn » Sun Jul 08, 2012 12:19 pm

I began writing down how often I was experiencing the dizzy-drunk feeling on June 20th. It happened 5 times that afternoon, each one lasting between 10-30 seconds. The next day, June 21st, it happened 7 times, five in the afternoon and two in the evening, with each lasting 10-30 seconds. As of two days ago, I had no occurrences and yesterday had one occurrence, which lasted 2-3 seconds and was almost not noticable. While I did not write down specific times/lengths the past several months, I did note that on June 11th, the day we left on vacation, I had 4 occurrences that were lasting 30-45 minutes each. So there has been an improvement over the past month which has made a huge difference in my daily life. The biggest thing is that I can drive myself again. I had my daughters and sister doing the driving when we were in Colorado or with me to take over if necessary.

I wanted to write down something a bit more tangible than "I feel better" with what has been going on. I'll post later this week about my sleep/nap times.

The entire family, myself included, slept in until lunchtime today. We were all up late at a fireworks display last night where the Austin Symphonic Band played. It was nice! Then we came home and had roasted bananas with dark chocolate on the stove--LOL!! I didn't get the chocolate, but the banana was really good!
[I'm editing this part because it doesn't sound as funny as it really was. We peeled bananas and put them on a skewer, like you would at a campfire with marshmallows, then we roasted them over the burner. We thought it was funny and fun because it is so hot and humid here in Central Texas. Here we turn the air conditioner on, get it nice and cold, and roast fruit. Okay, I thought it was funny.]

One of the vendors at the fireworks was selling roasted corn on the cob--add your own butter/seasonings. So my husband brought me one as a surprise! It was great as I was hungry. It didn't need a thing on it. I never would have thought so a couple of years ago.

I put some giant Peruvian lima beans on to soak for dinner tonight and will head to the kitchen to get something to eat when I am finished here. Today's meals will include the lima beans with tomatoes and kale in them, maybe broccoli risotto for lunch (which is now!), and a salad or two of kale, swiss chard, grapes, strawberries, blueberries, carrots, and bell pepper. I almost forgot that I bought some romaine lettuce hearts; those are great for snacks spread with hummus or eaten like bruschetta with the lettuce as the bread and with the tomato/basil/garlic mixture on top.

One of my daughters has difficulty walking on uneven surfaces, so last night, we put her on a golf cart that was provided by the fireworks organizers and they took her to the top of the hill by the park. I was able to walk it myself! It was a big thing for me and meant a lot to be able to let someone else who couldn't walk have my place on the cart.

Fulenn
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Sun Jul 08, 2012 1:13 pm

hi fulenn--

I loved reading this. Thanks so much for detailing your improvement! I remember how happy I was when my vertigo started to improve. I just had a slight bout of it the other day, and it never got very bad and was gone in less than a day. Hooray for both of us!

And what a wonderful victory to be able to walk up the hill yourself! I had a similar type of moment on the Fourth, which I renamed "interdependence Day" because of it. I live a block from the university here so lots of student neighbors. One is a young woman in a manual wheel chair named Ashley. She is bright, cheerful, and amazing in all her challenges. (She says she is stubborn too.) I met her when she needed help having someone hold her chair for her last winter. She has no legs from knee down and is quite heavy. At that time I couldn't do it, but hailed some other kids over to help. We became friends who meet on the sidewalk. Sometimes I would leave her a container of soup on her porch stoop if I had made a big pot full. You know, just thinking about how hard she works even to get to class. On the 4th, in the early evening, we decided to cross the busy street near our corner and go that direction for your walk. I could see her sitting at the other side of the street and could tell something was up. So I waved and the dog and I went over. Though they have put in handicap "ramps from the curb, the rise of the street is so steep, she could not get her chair up over it, I think due to having sprained a hand, which was in a bandage. So I said, let's see if we can give you a push. Strength in numbers! She had a strategy for going sideways and then turning out to avoid the steepest incline. It worked and I was able to push her across the street. I looked up after, thinking we would have to wait to get back over and all these cars had stopped and were just waiting so Romeo and I could cross back over. It was such a wonderful moment to be able to push her and help her out that way. So I know what you mean. :)

I LOVED hearing about all the food, the lovely plain roasted corn, and the roasted bananas in air conditioning. We Americans are pretty darn funny aren't we? Do you live in the Austin area? I was just wondering since you mentioned the Austin Symphony because I follow Engine 2 blog and I guess they have pot lucks, etc. If so, you might meet someone there. I remember a long time ago when starting this and before Rip's book came out I had found his newly made site by wandering from a blog called Soul Veggie where he and his Dad were mentioned. In fact that's where I first heard of them. I had seen a recipe I wanted to try but was waiting for my fresh basil. When I went back it wasn't up. So I wrote, saying I had not yet received my copy of Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease and could he send me the recipe. He wrote back himself with the recipe and was so encouraging, since I had mentioned I didn't have heart disease but MS. He said, "you are on the right track." Very nice indeed at the time. And now his whole deal is so big. Anyway, Austin seems like it would be a cool place.

I love using romaine hearts and big leaves for "sandwiches" too. I'm surprised in the end that I actually like it more than bread. It's funny how things can change.

Thanks again for sharing your improvements. Great about the driving too.

cheers,

moonwatcher
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby fulenn » Sun Jul 08, 2012 1:50 pm

I'm laughing because I've been trying to describe how I've been feeling for 3 or 4 months; my mother called me half an hour ago and asked if it was like vertigo, then you said it, too. Yep, that is what it feels like. :)

Fulenn
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Read my journal about tackling Multiple Sclerosis with a plant-based McDougall diet in the journal forum on this site, Fulenn's MS Page.

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby fulenn » Sun Jul 08, 2012 4:58 pm

I enjoyed reading about what happened with Ashley, especially the people in the cars who waited to you. That sort of kindness reminds me of why I live here. :)

Thank you for sharing it!

Fulenn
What if love really IS the answer?

Read my journal about tackling Multiple Sclerosis with a plant-based McDougall diet in the journal forum on this site, Fulenn's MS Page.

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:53 pm

hi fulenn--

it's 97 here today, I think--just got up from a nap. The dog is still napping. He's probably the wiser of the two of us. :-)

About the vertigo--bingo!! LOL :-)

And thank you for your comment about the story with Ashley. I am glad to live in a nice town, too.

best,

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby fulenn » Mon Jul 09, 2012 7:37 pm

No vertigo today!

Spent most of the day with the children, talking, watching videos, helping one make her halloween costume, it was a nice day.

Food today was rice with cauliflower adobo, mixed berry salad, leftover bean and kale soup over rice, romaine heart leaves with hummus spread, and cold water.

Took a nap today, but only slept 5 hours last night, so it balanced out. I got up when I got an early phone call and had to go somewhere for a couple of hours. Nothing bad, just interrupted my sleep. :)

Walked on the treadmill this evening as it was raining outside. 1.05 miles with no incline. Also did light hand weights.

Fulenn

edited walking distance: I walked 1, not 2 miles.
Last edited by fulenn on Mon Jul 09, 2012 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
What if love really IS the answer?

Read my journal about tackling Multiple Sclerosis with a plant-based McDougall diet in the journal forum on this site, Fulenn's MS Page.

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Mon Jul 09, 2012 10:36 pm

hooray for no vertigo!! That is just great, fulenn!! It sounds like you had such a nice day overall--I really enjoyed reading about it. Thanks for posting. :-)

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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby never give up » Tue Jul 10, 2012 7:47 am

Hi fulenn, Thank you so much for starting this post about your journey with MS and this WOE. You and moonwatcher are such an inspiration to me!

I was diagnosed with MS about 12 years ago. I have recently stopped the MS drugs and decided to go with just this WOE. It has made me not feel so alone to know that you two are here and doing it also. (Not that I would wish this on either of you, hope you know what I mean.) I think that I will follow your lead fulenn and start a journal of my own too.

I am very interested to see how Dr McDougall's trial is going as well.

Wish you all the best
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 10, 2012 9:15 am

Hi fulenn and never give up,

It's interesting to me, you two, that we all came to the decision to go with this WOE around the 12 year mark in our journeys past diagnosis. I didn't know what this WOE was, or even what "WOE" meant--or "SAD"--I remember when I first stumbled onto this place through Fat Free Vegan Kitchen I would think, what the heck is "SAD"??!! :roll: :lol: But this site turned out to be such an important piece in my personal puzzle. From here I learned to read The China Study, and from perusing Dr. McDougall's books, to feel free to eat starches and get beyond the ingrained unexamined notion they are "bad" for you.

(I am really indebted to Susan Voisin because from her blog, which came up when I simply had a light bulb moment to search fat free vegan recipes, since I was trying to find out if I could do Swank fat free and vegan, I branched out to find all the rest. She is now, I am happy to say, a dear friend. I have found all kinds of internet treasures just looking for recipes, which was hot I kept myself on task when I began. ) From Susan's FFVK site I wandered around, found McDougall, Fuhrman, and, among other stuff, Mark Sutton's blog, Soul Veggie, that first introduced me to the Esselstyn's and Howard Lyman who wrote Mad Cowboy, and even a panel discussion with all these plant based gurus debating each other on the fine points.

I have trouble calling myself a McDougaller, not because I don't follow what he says, but because I didn't come here and adopt "his" plan. His recommendations helped me streamline what was evolving and working out for me. When I came here I had already spent time discussing my experience with MS on the Swank boards, so didn't feel the inclination to start my own journal. Still don't. Because when I journal, it's tough for me to stay just on food, every aspect of this way of LIFE is so connected for me, both to things within it and outside of it. But I sure love talking with you two about it all, or if I don't have a lot to say (which believe it or not might happen :eek: :lol: ), just reading how you are doing, and offering encouragement. There is an isolation that occurs with a diagnosis of MS, it seems, that needs breaching. For those of you who were not born with something else to deal with, it seems even more so, maybe because that cherished notion of "normality" has been permanently altered. Ironically, never having had it seems to give me some kind of weird head start :idea: .

Back to my original point. When I heard Dr. McDougall's talk about MS, I was struck with his 10 year-12 year cut off point for meds to be of much benefit and/or for true downward spiral to "begin." Though my own doctors had not told me that (not that it would have occurred to me to ask it either), it seems like an accurate enough generalization.Even more so because I took no meds and did well with lifestyle changes that didn't include this diet, but a more healthy diet than SAD for sure. So it's interesting to me that we all came to this at around that point in the abstract MS timeline.

I think it's great you may start your own journal, never give up. :-)

all the best to both of you,

moonwatcher
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby fulenn » Tue Jul 10, 2012 4:12 pm

Hi, never give up! moonwatcher is an inspiration to me, too. :) I'm glad that you posted and will be watching for your journal. I know exactly what you mean about having company on this journey.

I'm with you, moonwatcher, about how interesting it is that we all looked elsewhere at the 12 year mark. I have often wondered if I did so well for so long because of my time trying Swank, maybe it gave me a little more time? I don't know. I must have missed Dr. McDougall's 10-12 year reference in his talk; do you mean the talk that is on the front page of this site?

Took the girls bowling this afternoon, picked up one child's friend to spend the night and they bowled with us. Now we are home and getting ready for dinner. Broccoli risotto, watermelon, and maybe eggplant-tomato stew. One daughter suggested adding butternut squash chunks to the stew, it's beginning to sound good.

Energy is good today, no vertigo so far, no nap this afternoon. I haven't walked or lifted weights yet, so we'll see how that goes.

I have support from my spouse and children, and now from my mother, too!

Enough of that! This is working and the rest of it won't even be a consideration, I hope, after continuing to eat this way for the rest of my life. :) If we could get more people to eat this way, we wouldn't have to pay each others bills so they could get treatment, a huge number of us wouldn't get sick in the first place. How did the medical establishment ever get so out of control in the first place? Blech!

Fulenn
Last edited by fulenn on Tue Jul 31, 2012 5:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby lmggallagher » Tue Jul 10, 2012 5:42 pm

Fuelenn:

I wouldn't mention this at all, but it's such a parallel in my mind to something you wrote. I have had cancer and by an error made by my medical team, I had huge expenses (for me) that my insurance wouldn't cover. A friend suggested that she'd get the community together for a walk-a-thon to help with the expenses and I told her no way. I also told her there are people we know that pay this kind of money every year because of things they were born with - what are we doing to help with that. I was thinking of a friend who has cerebral palsy and other issues. The drugs he was on were outrageously expensive and the medical insurance didn't cover much of it as some was experimental according to them. So don't for a minute think that what you said was being whiney or begrudging. The costs were something I knew would be behind me, unlike my friend who faces the those expenses and issues for life!

But on-the-other-hand, and I am only speaking for myself here about isolating - I am not good at letting but a few people know what I face with fibromyalgia (boy is that not true here :lol: ) and I think that is true with my friend with MS as well. I don't know if it's because I want to appear capable of doing for myself or I want to kind of hide my head under the sand at times. Other times it's because getting help can be a pain too - because I am not up to having people around when it's bad for me. Point is, I am not good at asking for or accepting help - and I have lots of people who would or have offered. So for me it's self isolation - when things get tough and I know it's exactly opposite of how it should be.

I noticed that you mentioned that support from your Mother is just like recently. I don't know if it's the same for you perhaps in past, but my friend has great disappointment that her parents are not really acknowledging her struggles. That is very hard for her - she knows they love her greatly, but they seem to ignore her illness in so many ways. I am glad your Mother is there for you - that is good hear that your family is there for you!!! And my gosh it seems that you and your kids are having all kinds of fun with summer!!!
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby fulenn » Tue Jul 10, 2012 5:55 pm

My mother lives 1000 miles away, so she never really saw what was going on with me until this summer. As soon as she saw, she was 100% behind me. My girls and I visited last month for 3 weeks and she graciously asked me how to cook McDougall, bought and cooked most of the food for us, and never, not even one time, complained about it. :) I am very, very lucky to have someone like her.

I hope everything turned out well for you with your cancer scare. And thank you for pointing this out to me so kindly. :)

Fulenn
Last edited by fulenn on Tue Jul 31, 2012 5:56 am, edited 1 time in total.
What if love really IS the answer?

Read my journal about tackling Multiple Sclerosis with a plant-based McDougall diet in the journal forum on this site, Fulenn's MS Page.

My blog: http://fulennskitchen.blogspot.com
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 10, 2012 6:45 pm

hi fulenn and lmggallagher,

I would say all these forms of isolation are valid, and have interplay with all the issues you've identified. It's good to look at them all, and, I would say say, in some way acknowledge their presence.

I certainly can relate to how tiring it becomes to negotiate asking for help, even though I may truly need it. I often look at the choice of getting tired out from making the arrangements and the social negotiation of the help when it does come (this isn't necessarily bad, it just can't be helped), or blowing myself out doing some form of it myself. I often pick the last one. :) And there are those people who of course are always willing to help and who make that as easy as possible. They are the "angels" in anyone's life, especially mine!

I once read a very interesting thing about "chronic" in Ken Wilbur's book Grace and Grit, which is about his wife's long battle with breast cancer--in fact he interweaves her own writing about it into his, since she did not get to finish a book like that. Amazing stuff. Anyway, he talks about how people don't do "chronic" well--and someone else in the cancer support field who explained this to him. So people are around for the part that seems to have an immediate solution--to take out the tumor, and remove the disease, etc. But if it keeps coming back, or with something like MS, that isn't as clear cut, well, they just don't know how to handle that, so they don't. Make sense? I'm probably not repeating it very well.

Yes, I agree, fulenn, it would be wonderful if more people ate this way and had less exorbitant bills and less pain and less of all that stuff--right? So we live that as best we can one breath at a time.

And now to the really important stuff :-) I loved hearing about that sleepover and I vote with your daughter for adding the chunks of squash to the eggplant tomato stew!!

xo

moonwatcher
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Re: Fulenn's MS page

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 10, 2012 6:47 pm

fulenn--meant to say, yes, I think that reference is in the talk that's free and available on the site about MS. And I agree that following Swank probably slowed things down for you. I was doing something very similar and it helped--but now it's necessary to go "all the way" to plant strong.

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