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Gratitude, part 3 of 3

I want to express my gratitude for something else. I was sitting at the top of the high school bleachers recently, in the sunshine, watching my son Kincade play baseball.

His athleticism astonishes me. I have two brothers who played college baseball, but still. Cade made a diving catch in right field, he had two amazing hits (one a double), and he very nearly threw a kid out at home plate from the outfield. A month or so before, he hit a grand slam.

His fastball is nearing 85 mph average speed.

Forgive the bragging. But there’s a point to this:

When he was 18 months old, I was given yet another prescription for oral steroids, the 5th round in as many months. Kincade was regularly up all night, wheezing and coughing, turning blue, getting more and more sickly and underweight, on a regular basis. I fed him the usual suspects: infant formula, chicken nuggets, popsicles, dairy products, cinnamon raisin bread.

I dreaded night time when the asthma became terrifying and I rocked him for hours, panicking. I intended to give that rocking chair to a friend for his yard sale recently because it has bad memories for me. (Kincade asked if he could keep it as I was driving away to give it to the yard sale and said, “I have happy memories of that chair.” Who knew!)

Something happened that day in the doctor’s office when I was given that fifth steroid prescription. I became acutely aware that if I kept doing the same things, I’d keep getting the same results. I became aware that the drug therapies were hurting, not helping. They were masking symptoms, not solving underlying problems.

The results of following medical protocols were terrible: a sick kid, anxiety, hopelessness. The doc had sent me out the door with a warning: kids who have 5 courses of steroids in a year have stunted growth.

Long story short, I was desperate to avoid “stunted growth.” In his father’s family, the men are 6’4 to 6’8″, and height is a birthright in both our families. I began seeking, reading, learning. I changed his diet, starting with kicking sugar and dairy to the curb.

END of asthma. END of doctor’s office and ER visits. END of all-nighters feeding him cough syrup and strapping the nebulizer mask to his face so he could suck some bronchodilators and vaporized steroids into his lungs.

It seems like a miracle that my kid is 6’2″ and growing, 172 lbs., and strong and healthy as an ox now. And it is a miracle. Naaman in the Bible was told by the prophet Elisha to “wash and be cleansed” to be healed of leprosy. And he “turned and went off in a rage.” Fortunately Naaman repented after his servants challenged him: “If the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it?”(2 Kings 5:11-12).

It’s the simple things that often give us the miracles. Go and wash in the river–far too simple, right?

Can you handle the fact that the simple fact of replacing dairy and sugar, with whole plant foods, changed the course of not just Kincade’s life, but my whole family’s? Just a year of shifting to natural, mostly raw foods.

Is it too hard to believe, because it didn’t involve fancy medical technology, new drugs, herculean efforts? I wish I had a more whiz-bang story, but all I have is the truth.

I am so thankful.

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