Have you ever had that moment of, "Oh sh*t, where's the bathroom?!"...and you start to sweat and worry about all the things that could go wrong (like you messing your pants flat-out combusting into dust because you're confident your stomach pains are the first symptoms of you becoming a ticking time bomb and that is just a fate you will have to accept)? But, like, you experience this every other day? Me, too, girl. Me, too.
When I was 23, I experienced my first real scare with stomach issues. I was crouched over in the fetal position, battling sharp pains that, in my mind, were for sure a sign of death. Between all-too-frequent bathroom breaks and--I'm gonna get real with you, beware--a small amount of blood in my stool, I was convinced there was something terribly wrong with me.
"I was left to a cocktail of fiber pills and muscle relaxers for my intestines to "soothe" my symptoms."
After I calmed down from this stomach attack, I did some self-assessment to figure out if I had eaten something "off" or if I hadn't drank enough water. And I quickly realized that these types of attacks, while much more mild, had been happening for quite a few months at this point. And that scared the crap out of me...literally.
Flash forward to multiple doctor's appointments with my General Practitioner, a Gastroenterologist, and even a Holistic Chiropractor (I don't know, I was desperate...) as well as more tests than I'd like to admit to, I was diagnosed with IBS. The one "syndrome" that is apparently incurable, and basically exists as a blanket diagnosis for: we don't know what else it could be, so this is what you've got diagnosis. And to make matters more complicated, there was not a lot of research or information on IBS at the time of my diagnosis. So I was left to a cocktail of fiber pills and muscle relaxers for my intestines to "soothe" my symptoms. I can confidently tell you this was one of the worst things I could have been given at the time...but ya live and ya learn, right?
"But through it all, I knew if I were ever able to get to a place of healing my gut and finding a routine that allowed me to live a normal, worry-less-about-the-bathroom lifestyle, I was going to find a way to teach it to my fellow gut sufferers."
The truth is, IBS is a real thing...it just often (if not always) stems from a deeper issue in our health. And after trial and error of trying to figure out ways to cope with this syndrome on my own, I realized I had a weird, personally-invested interest in diving deeper in gut health. I found some things that worked for me, many things that did not. But through it all, I knew if I were ever able to get to a place of healing my gut and finding a routine that allowed me to live a normal, worry-less-about-the-bathroom lifestyle, I was going to find a way to teach it to my fellow gut sufferers.
The first thing I did once finding a path that fit my lifestyle AND helped heal and maintaining my good gut health was...I wrote a book! If you haven't gotten a copy of my Gut Fix eBook yet, get one here for free! These are my top 6 tips for healing and maintaining good gut health and this is honestly my best suggestion of where to start.
After sharing this eBook and helping a few of my clients find their own successes in healing their bellies, I knew I had a true desire and call to take this further. But the timing and circumstances for taking that next step to become a Certified Gut Specialist was...divine.
You see, the day before I signed the dotted line, my husband was admitted into the ER for stroke-like symptoms. Through rapid, intense testing (MRIs, CT scans, blood work, etc), he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and left temporarily paralyzed on the right side of his body. During those life changing hours, I told myself that entering online schooling was not in my cards. My focus would soon be on his healing and that alone.
What I didn't realize (or honestly, give enough credit to) was my husband's willpower and strength to fight through his recovery. And after confessing my decision to my husband of not going forward with my registration, he through me for a loop. He told me I did not have a choice and I must continue to sign up. That this was something I wanted for myself, and whatever I was about to learn during my studies over the next year would only help his healing in the process. As I reluctantly stared at the reality of the medical bills we were about to be faced with, I took out my credit card and called the instructor. A full year's tuition and a whole bunch of fear and excitement later, I charged my card and was signed up to study gut health and holistic healing.
The next 11 1/2 months were physically and emotionally taxing, as life often is. My husband persevered through his recovery like a gosh damn hero, and I embraced the balance of enjoying life while still trying to maintain a full time coporate career and complete my online schooling.
And through it all, I was able to officially complete my course work at receive all three of my certifications: Holistic Health Coach, Gut Health Specialist, and Stress & Mindset Coach.
With these certifications and my education, I am able to offer so much more to the world when it comes to managing gut health. Through my online courses and one-on-one health coaching, I can dive deeper into specific regimens, diets, and lifestyle enhancements to support that girl who is wishing she was living her best life, wishing she was thinking about brunch instead of frantically searching for bathrooms.
"Because I know how imperative it is to not only have someone believe in your symptoms but to believe in your ability to heal."
To take your first step in finding out if my help could be the next best step in your own journey of healing your gut, check out my Health & Wellness Survey to receive a free one-on-one consultation. Once my gut health courses are live, you will be first in line to gain access to them, friend. Because I know how imperative it is to not only have someone believe in your symptoms but to believe in your ability to heal. And I am here for you at all scary, frantic, and healing steps of your journey.