Intuition, self-care and health

I am here, sat outside with the grass between my toes, on an overcast but warm day nearing the end of July, thinking about the one hell of a journey the last nine weeks have been. I've been rather quiet on here, not sending newsletters and not being that active on social media...for good reason.


Why I am writing this blog when it has nothing to do with art? Well, I am hoping my journey will help others...even if it is just one. Talking to lots of people, reading lots of information and taking many tests over recent weeks has been like a jigsaw puzzle, putting all the pieces together. You may want a grab cuppa...It's a long one.


I am nearly a stone lighter, I’ve learnt about myself, I’ve understood more about self-healing, I have become more spiritual and become even stronger about listening to my intuition. I have changed the way I eat and the way I look after my soul, mind and body, and boy, I really understand what anxiety is like; the everyday battle of fight or flight, how it caught my breath, feeling tight in my chest and my emotions have been a roller-coaster.


I haven’t been quiet about the crappy nine weeks as I believe talking to people can build up a picture as well as get a lot of worry off your chest. I’ve chatted to many people from clients to work colleagues, from friends to family, to doctors, nurses and dentists, to fitness and yoga trainers, from online folk I’ve never met, to my intuition.


Through talking to people, it has got them talking about their similar problems, with one saying ‘I’ve really not spoken to anyone in detail about this before.’ Sometimes I wondered whether I was talking about this too much to others, thinking ‘here we go, drama queen,’…but then it was my way to process my thinking and get through each day. Plus I am trying hard to stop people pleasing and worry about what others think.


So what’s been happening? Well the 25th May, is when my digestive system began becoming a little fiery. My stools starting softening and my tummy was cramping here and there. I remember being outside at work playing a parachute game with the children and a colleague saying, ‘Are you okay?’ I was a little uncomfortable to say the least.


The May half term holiday had begun and then the stomach problems really kicked in. We had just gone on holiday to Wales and I felt rough. My tummy was in knots. I had to rush to the toilet a few times and upon ordering a soup I remember just sitting there emotional, feeling no appetite, in pain. It felt like my lactose intolerance issues were coming back to haunt me (it took a year for this to be diagnosed 18 years ago). I fasted for 12 hours, but couldn’t sleep due to hunger pains so I was raiding the fridge at 2am. I decided to come off gluten to see if it helped. I tried my best to enjoy the holiday but it was hard work. I went to the local pharmacy where they gave me cramping relief tablets and managed to talk to a doctor from my home surgery on the phone who asked me lots of questions: Have you been in dirty water? Yes I was in contaminated water the day before this all happens at the allotment. Is there blood? No. Has anyone else in family got it? No. Have you has anything dramatic happen recently? No. Etc. He asked to bring in a stool sample, however I couldn’t get a stool sample in until we got back home, but unfortunately the long bank holiday kicked in so no doctors were open. The earliest it would be was Monday, 13 days after it all started.


I was tired, zapped of energy, the toilet trips were getting more frequent and I was cramping well. I was glad to be home.


The jubilee weekend…I don’t remember much of it except for lying on the sofa, watching the odd bit of the events on the TV, sleeping, lack of energy, sitting on the toilet and cramping…I felt awful. I phoned 111 and she referred me to a pharmacy. The advice was to keep drinking and continue taking cramping relief tablets.


I started to slightly perk up by the time Monday came. I saw a doctor, put a stool sample in and a blood test was booked for later on in the week. I managed (I’m not sure how) to teach art all day but I was uncomfortable and anxious. On Tuesday I felt on top of the world. One toilet movement, nearly two weeks after this kicked off…I was finally starting to repair! I met a friend for a cuppa and we talked about coming off gluten and how better it made us feel. I managed to eat all of my tea; jacket potato with cheese and beans with a salad. Maybe I was gluten intolerant.


How wrong I was…


The following day was the worst day of all…I had chronic diarrhoea with a record of 14 trips to the toilet. I feel horrendous: teary, exhausted, stomach was in knots. I text my husband to take me to A&E. I didn’t know what to do with myself. This wasn't right. A&E just gave me advice and added more investigations to my up and coming blood test. I had to reintroduce gluten due to one part of the test was to see if I was coeliac. I was struggling and I felt I wasn’t getting much help. I messaged work to say I wouldn’t be in for the rest of the week and texted all of my clients and parents to say art was cancelled for the nearer future until I got my health back on track. One of my lovely clients text me about a local acupuncturist who did wonders for her. I am a bit of a believer in fate so I thought I’d try it, so I booked in a session later on in the week.


My sleep was never disturbed, I slept like a log. But with each morning I woke up I began to get more and more anxious. The worry of my morning bowel movements; what would they be like, how much pain will I be in, what the hell was I going to eat, what was wrong with me? Each day was different. Sometimes I felt a little better and others I felt terrible again.


I spent time researching gut health on the internet, some of it frightened the hell out of me, some very interesting and some seemed manageable to control.


I attended my first acupuncture, not really knowing what to expect. I knew it wasn’t a cure and would probably be take a few sessons to see some results. Talking about food issues with my acupuncturist was really interesting and the advice gave me some reading to do on blood types and foods to eat.


My bloods were in: I was clear. No inflammation, not coeliac and kidneys, liver, blood count and thyroid all working fine. The stools had no bacterial infection.


I decide to go back to work (school) as I was fed up of seeing the four walls of the living room. My colleagues were shocked to see how grey I looked and how much weight I had lost. Why don’t you go home? I just need to be busy…give me something gentle to do.


Foods were becoming a problem. Even an apple was giving me terrible bloating and burping…they were loud! I read about the FODMAP diet so I put myself on to it.


I spoke to a work colleague about IBS and a friend that had suffered from gut inflammation. All these conversations were helping me piece things together and try and work out ways to feel better.


But I am very much about finding out the root cause, so I did some research.


Maybe it was an intolerance? I did some research on the internet and found a company called Supply Life. A kit came with a video with clear instructions of how to take the blood. (I bleed well!) and I sent it off in the post. About a week later I found out I couldn’t eat peas, cashew nuts, flax seeds, barley, kidney beans and haricot beans (no wonder I was on the toilet 14 times after my baked beans the night before). Dodgy ones were peanuts, sheep milk and egg white.


I came off the foods but still I wasn’t seeing huge results. The FODMAP diet was slightly helping but I was getting bored of the same, bland foods. I had no inspiration to cook and I wasn't get excited about food (usually I love my food) as I was worried if it would make me poorly the next day.


I decide to bring back some of my art clients but I had to risk assess the situation. What happens if I needed to loo? I needed time to eat in the evening too as a lot of my clients are evening based. I bought back a few adults in the day, zoom clients, the older home educated children and a small handful of older children in the evening. Unfortunately I had to take it day by day and I cancelled many on the day.


I now started talking to my own doctor and he asked for another stool sample. Again this showed no inflammation, no blood etc. He referred me to a gastroenterologist. This was a 20 week wait. There would be nothing left of me. I’m now 8 stone 4lbs!


At the end of June, my friend was starting her yoga business. I thought I’d give it a go. Yin yoga was the first session I attended with a meditation and a ceremony of the new moon at the end. What a powerful exercise! The experience was a huge, emotional one and I burst into tears. She said that was completely normal with all the negative energies I was releasing. Since then I have continued each Sunday with this practice and it has given me such relief.


After more research I came across a company called Healthpath. My intuition told me to book a free consultation. I managed to book one the same day. Sat in B&Q car park talking about my gut health to a health practitioner was eye opening…’It sounds to me you have parasites or a bad bacteria.’ She stated the best products to purchase. These kits weren’t cheap to buy so I spent some time reading the reviews and the blogs, and of course spoke to my hubby. My intuition kept bugging me to purchase it, so I did. A few days later the kit arrived. It was very well thought out, supplying gloves, wipes, a poo catcher and two sample pots. I had to wait a few days before I could send the samples due to only being able to send them at the beginning of the week. With the stools potted and given in at the Post Office, it would be a least a two week wait before I heard anything.


Waiting was a big problem for me...I am an impatient fart as it is, but when you're ill you just want to know what is going on. None of this waiting helped my anxiety at all. As each day past the anxiety was getting worse and worse. I felt like crap, I was struggling with food, I was hating the toilet, I was becoming a known face at the doctors, I couldn't work at my potential, I wasn't putting in effort at home and with my family and I was frustrated. I woke up anxious, I could feel it in my chest, I could feel it in my gut and it was gripping me hard. My mind was niggling and I felt I was in fight or flight with my intelligent side of the brain not being as active. I kept saying to my hubby, 'I need to get my shit together and I don't know how.' After my second treatment of acupuncture, it helped my anxiety immensely and cramping went temporarily. After yoga the cramping would disappear until the next day. Additionally I decided to get into meditation but also get some hypnotherapy with a local hypnotherapist.


Meditation and hypnotherapy is amazing. They really put you in the here and now. I started a 'What's Been Good?' journal which I write in every night before I go to sleep. I also went to bed a bit earlier to listen to a relaxation audio too. I was practicing meditation everyday...the more I practised, the more it become easier.


Week seven approached, then my son started getting diarrhoea. Four days in I thought I'd better ring the doctors. I spoke to my doctor and said I had an allotment and work with children and I had mentioned at the start of all this I had my hands in open air, dirty water. Could it be a chance it was parasites? I was still going to the toilet too. He asked me to get four stool samples from my son and I over a course of three days and also for myself to go in for another blood test on the Friday to check other things.


So that's what we did. Monday arrived. I had a phone call from the doctor in the afternoon and my heart sank. My bloods has shown a high thirties level on my ovaries which could mean there could be a tumour growing on them. I was referred for a scan which had to be done within two weeks. On top of that, my son and I had to redo the stool samples as they weren't in the right order.


My anxiety hit a high level and I spent days crying. I didn't know what to do. Every emotion and thought was racing through me. I went into work but hid away doing admin stuff as I couldn't comprehend what was going on. On top of that my stomach was cramping but positively the stools were slightly improving. Two colleagues at work said I should phone the doctor and I did and he asked me to come to the surgery straight away. I texted my hubby to join me. We were there for half an hour talking about everything including my son after he now had ten days of diarrhoea. He booked him in for a blood test and said to me not to worry. He thought I may have had gastro infection which had turned to IBS. I felt a little better afterwards but the thought in my head was still niggling.


Each week I was talking to a parent who regularly sent me information about gut health but when I told her about this latest result and the anxiety I was having she told me about Earthing. Earthing was briefly bought up in the second yoga class, but I didn't know what it was. My client sent me an Earthing Movie and I watched...I was hooked.


Earthing is 'when your bare feet or skin comes in contact with the earth, free electrons are taken up into the body. These electrons could be referred to as nature’s biggest antioxidants and help neutralise damaging excess free radicals that can lead to inflammation and disease in the body. The Earth is a conductor or free electrons and so are all living things on the planet, including us. The body is composed of mostly of water and minerals which in combination are excellent conductors of electrons from the Earth providing there is direct skin contact or some other conductive channel for them to flow through. The Earth’s energy upgrades one’s physiology by allowing the body to cope and repair thereby promoting well-being, vitality and better sleep. It also harmonizes and stabilizes the body’s basic biological rhythms, knocks down (and even knocks out) chronic inflammation and reduces and eliminates associated pain, making it the most natural and powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-aging remedy around!' (quote from https://www.barefoothealing.com.au/v/what-is-earthing/22).


The day after I took off my shoes and socks and I placed my feet on the grass for two and half hours. I felt good. Each day after I would meditate outside and walk around the garden barefooted. By the weekend I felt that my anxiety had greatly reduced.


I love reading my stars. As an Aquarius I read that the month of July was about 'bringing focus to self care, changing eating habits, spending more time exercising and working on emotional well-being. I would be presented with new opportunities for personal growth towards the end of the month - leading me to have greater sense of self belief and recognise the challenges I have successful overcome.' @bluemoon_spirtual It couldn't be further from the truth. Josh (pronounced Zosh) also popped on her reels that the Cancer season was a bit rocky...'you may have experienced unexpected good changes, but also deep healing as you let go of your pain and sadness. You are no longer tied to the darkness which has weighed you down and tied to a feeling of lack. Continue to embrace deep and soul conversations.' Could something good be happening?


My results from Healthpath came in whilst I was in Tesco's carpark....I was diagnosed with very low levels of Bifidobacteria, elevated levels of hydrogen sulphide, elevated fat and sugar in the stools indicating maldigestion of these nutrients and two parasites; Blastocystis Hominis and Dientamoeba Fragilis. The language and the jumping around in the car must have been a sight! This diagnose came with two hours of reading; what to do, which supplements to take, how often, when and how to slowly introduce them into my routine, diet plans, recipes, shopping lists, information about each diagnosis, plus so much more. I ordered my supplements late afternoon and they came the following morning. That same afternoon I had the results from the doctors and my stools for parasites came back clear. A few days later I found out my son's bloods and stools are clear, but if he has the same parasites as me, they wouldn't show up.


Every three days I have to introduce a new supplement and increase the dosage until I reach to what they have recommended. Along with two diet plans, they suggest it will take about 12 weeks to sort itself out.


After introducing the first of five supplements. My stools were improving and the toileting had reduced but the cramping wasn't. Seeing the acupuncturist again, I said my cramping was still happening and since she did her magic (touchwood) the cramping stopped.


The following week I knew l still had this scan on my ovaries to have. My anxiety wasn't as bad as I though, maybe Earthing helped or getting a diagnosis. The two ladies were absolutely lovely, putting me at ease straight away. After two scans; one external and one internal, thank goodness, she said she could see nothing. What a relief! On the way back, my intuition told me to drop in the results from the private results to my doctors.


I am feeling a lot better and stronger each day, but it will be a long road to recovery. I am now on my third supplement and the FODMAP recipes are yummier than the ones I was trying to make. I have dropped to 7 stone 13lbs but I am eating full, healthy meals and snacking. Next week I can start slowly introducing eliminated foods back into my diet. I have missed so much food. I'm hoping by October I will be back to how I was before. The oregano oil which will fight the parasites will start this weekend. I hoping there aren't too many effects from it. After talking to a lady in a Instagram art group, she took five different antibiotics which didn't shift her parasites but the oregano oil did.


I would like to say a massive thank you especially to my hubby and son who has had the brunt of it all but to those who have supported, guided, listened, texted, hugged, opened up, made recommendations...you all have been a godsend. I love you all. You know who you are.


So if you see me walking around in barefeet...I haven't gone mad...I am just Earthing. All of this has certainly changed my way of thinking and my self-care.


If you are suffering with anything, don't suffer, you are meant to be well....find out the root cause, listen to your intuition, make sure you make time for self-care and talk to people. Gut health can cause a whole host of problems...and get Earthing...it's free, it gets rid of all that inflammation and your cells moving.


These are not affiliated links but those who have helped in my journey...thank you to you all.


www.healthpath.com - Gut Testing

www.supplylife.com/ - Intolerance Testing

www.kghypnotherapy.co.uk/ - Hypnotherapy

www.facebook.com/TraceyGriffithsAcupuncture - Acupuncture

www.yogapractic.co.uk - Yoga and Chiropractor

www.earthing.com - Earthing

Earthing Movie - Earthing

https://www.bluemoonspiritual.com/ - Star reading

www.youtube.com - For meditation practices


Plus I have been reading various materials on the Internet, listening to podcasts and watching YouTube about gut health, intuition, Earthing, meditation and food.













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