Finally with the help of holistic health practitioners, we discovered that my child did not have ADHD. What he did have was Candidiasis and a severe yeast allergy. The very behaviors that were classified as ADHD were actually allergic reactions to the yeast in the food he was eating. This felt right!
as seen in Parent Guide News New York July 2004
I had just spent another 2 hours putting my son to bed. He finally finished jumping on his bed, kicking the walls and decorating every inch of his room with hangers. This was our nightly routine. I was exhausted, stressed and at the end of the day patience was hard to find. I looked down at the bottle of medication in my hand. I couldn't believe that I had become desperate enough to consider giving my child a schedule II narcotic. It didn't feel right.
A quiet voice justified my decision. After all, the doctor diagnosed him with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) with emphasis on the "H". You're helping him? I told myself. My body started shaking as I watched my three and a half year old swallow the pill. I had told him it was a "vitamin". I was lying. It was Ritalin. I knew about all the possible side effects and I prayed for a safe outcome. It didn't feel right.
It all started when I was told my son could not come back to his preschool next year. Gymnastics gave us our money back mid-session and my husband and I didn't know what a night out was. Our babysitters never came back. We tried time out, sticker charts and other behavior management strategies. We read all the books, listened to all the tapes and talked to psychiatrists. Nothing worked. I hired a child therapist to follow him at school. She told me everything I already knew with the added information that the children in his class didn't like him. At the advice of the therapist I invited each child in his class over for a play date. Surely I could teach him social cues and play date etiquette. I micro-managed each and every play date. It didn't feel right.
My whole family was impacted. My husband and I were fighting and blaming each other for my son's behavior. My six year old daughter was having stress related night terrors due to the tension in our home. I internalized everything. I was losing weight and had chronic diarrhea. I was doubling over with acute gastritis attacks. I was unable to sleep and I finally realized that I was holding my breath. It didn't feel right.
Miracles are sometimes people in motion. A concerned relative took one look at me and intervened. She put me in her car and drove me straight to a stress consultant that she had been working with. This appointment changed my life. I was introduced to belly breathing also known as diaphragmatic breathing and affirmations. It was brilliant. I started to feel the effects of breathing and affirmations immediately. I became calm and focused. I started sleeping without guilt. I would release myself by saying "I have done everything I can do for today." I reminded myself that "I am a good mother." I did my breathing and I was sleeping for the first time in a long time. This was working. This felt right!
Once I started feeling better, I quickly realized that this could help my child. I had noticed that the right bedtime story could get my son to stay still for a moment. I began t create stories that entertained him while at the same time relaxed his mind and body. The first story was A Boy and a Bear. My son would lie still and his breathing would slow as he heard me read how, "the boy loved how the sun felt on his belly as it went up and down. The boy liked the way this felt. So did the bear." It worked! Next, I tackled his slipping self-esteem. I created The Affirmation Web. Animals of the forest demonstrated the power of positive self talk. His self-esteem began to rise. This felt right!
The benefits of breathing and affirmations were contagious. The calmness rippled through our house replacing stress and chaos. We all began to relax, unwind and even see things more clearly. This shift opened us up to find answers that felt right for our family. Just like the caterpillar in The Goodnight Caterpillar, "the world looked different to us now" Finally with the help of holistic health practitioners, we discovered that my child did not have ADHD. What he did have was Candidiasis and a severe yeast allergy. The very behaviors that were classified as ADHD were actually allergic reactions to the yeast in the food he was eating. This felt right!
We started a four day rotation and avoidance diet and within days noticed a decrease in hyperactivity. We worked with concepts from books like, "Is This Your Chil" By Dr. Doris Rapp and The Yeast Connection by Dr.William Crook. These books held the answers our family so desperately wanted. The diet allowed my son to stop taking Ritalin. The diet was taxing and stressful for our family. There had to be an easier way to maintain wellness. We searched for alternative ways to address my son's food allergies. Holistic healing modalities helped alleviate my son's reactions to most of his food and environmental allergies. Today we are living a normal life.
The gift of this journey has been the joy of sharing my family's experience with others. My relaxation books are helping children everywhere to manage stress and anxieties. Children are empowered to calm themselves and feel good. Thanks to a little voice that said it didn't feel right and thanks to a little boy that pushed his mother to find answers.
This feels right!
Lori Lite is the author of four relaxation books for children, mother of three and a Certified Children's Meditation Facilitator. The Lite family donated 700 books to the children of New York to help children deal with the trauma of 9/11. A Boy and a Turtle, The Affirmation Web, The Goodnight Caterpillar, A Boy and a Bear and the just released audio book with all four stories Indigo Dreams are available at www.LiteBooks.net