Friday, February 14, 2014

Friday Funny

I couldn't resist posting this before I head off on holidays.

Just remember, you lovebirds, any hanky panky tonight could have consequences later in the year haha.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

5 Things I Did During My Bloggy Break

I have to say that I enjoyed my break from blogging immensely.  As much I look forward to writing new posts, it was good to allow my brain to rest from thinking (or overthinking) a bit.  It was good to be free of the burden of worrying whether this blog is interesting to other people.

Here's what I got up to:

1.  I edited two more chapters of my book - that's 35 chapters down, 13 to go.  I've been putting Rory in daycare one day a week and I spend the day editing in the public library in town.  I can be much more productive in the library without the distractions of home.

2.  We went to Perth last weekend for our annual farm staff party.  Friday was spent at Adventure World (not my cup of tea) and we had lunch on Saturday at a tavern with a fantastic indoor kids' playground. 

3.  I went to Zumba twice.  I love it!

4.  We went to an Australia Day barbecue at church.

5.  I took Rory for a swim at our local pool to try out the new little floaty swimming thing my parents gave him for his birthday.

I've only just returned to blogging and now I'm off on another two week break.  Tomorrow night we head off to our church camp near Albany, and then Duncan has two weeks of annual leave.  Dunsborough, Denmark (the WA town, not the country), beach, coffee, wineries, reading, relaxing (as much as you can with a baby) here I come!

*happy dance*

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

I'm Back and My Back

My breastfeeding days are numbered.  Rory is down to one feed per day (just before bedtime).  But what I feared has become arthritis has returned.

Those who have been regular readers of this blog for quite some time will know that I have a type of arthritis called Ankylosing Spondyltitis in my lower back.  I was diagnosed after a year of thinking I had a back injury from sport or from sleeping on bad mattresses.  My local doctor picked it up straight away when I complained of back pain in the early hours of the morning which eased when I got up and moved around.  A blood test confirmed his suspicions as the test showed I have a genetic marker called HLA B27.  AS is an autoimmune condition where my white blood cells mistake my own cells for a bacteria called Klebsiella (so they basically attack my own body).  Most people manage the condition with anti-inflammatories and lots of exercise, but I decided I didn't want 20 years of Celebrex.  Two months after my diagnosis, Duncan's cousin's husband told me about how the pain can be managed by a low starch diet.  The Klebsiella bacteria feed off starch in the intestine and that sets off the autoimmune reaction.  If there's little or no starch in the body, the bacteria will effectively starve and therefore my back will not be so inflamed.

Here's a recap for those who are interested:
The Back Verdict
Life With AS
Six Months of Weird Diet Complete!
Diary of an Incubator: Pregnancy and AS

The thing I really enjoyed about being pregnant and breastfeeding is that the arthritis went into remission.  After a year of little or no bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, bananas, corn, cakes, chips etc (basically everything I love), I was scoffing vast quantities of them again with no pain!  It was one of those mysteries.  Even Dr Google doesn't know what causes it.  Most articles I read said sometimes pregnancy makes AS better, sometimes worse, and sometimes no difference.  Now that I'm nearly done with breastfeeding, I have to go back on the low starch diet.  Booooo!

I've been back on it for nearly three weeks now.  Bye bye cereal and a banana for breakfast, hello fruit and yogurt and a fruit smoothie (and sometimes scrambled eggs).  Bye bye cookies with flour, and hello cookies with almond meal.  Bye bye looking at menus with glee at all the wonderful options, hello thinking what the heck am I going to eat at this cafe (a limp salad does not sound appealing).

Almond meal choc chip cookies

Low starch breakfast - fruit and yogurt and a mixed berry smoothie

I still often wake up in some discomfort in the mornings.  My left hip has been playing up recently.  I don't know if I'm not being strict enough with what I eat, or if the diet is not as effective this time around.

I'm going to try a Bioflow wristband next.  Everyone I've talked to who has one reckon they're great and, besides, what have I got to lose?

It's very tempting to have another child so I can go into remission again (Duncan says, "NO!")