Hello my old and new friends. Thank you for joining us. My name is Shawn Blymiller and I am Theo's Father. I know that Theo is the star of the show, but I thought that I would share some of my own thoughts here on our website and this blog.
A few years ago, I had this burning desire to change things in my life. I knew that I hadn't fully actualized and reached my full potential, and I was tired of the excuses that I was telling myself. I had this burning desire to really achieve something meaningful and impactful in my life and in the life of those around me.
Let's just say that I had reached a point in my life where my soul was being reflected back to me, and I didn't like what I was seeing. So I made a simple goal to expand my knowledge and experience. That goal was to read 2 books a month. That was the beginning of 2018, and I have read a pile of really good books since.
Why did I make this a goal? Well, I had heard over and over again that the average CEO reads 60 books a year. That is 5 books a month. I knew that I couldn't keep up with that pace to start, so I edited the goal to an achievable measure for myself.
About this same time, Theo had been diagnosed with Autism. Angela was learning a ton and I was trying to keep my head above water, from all of the material and content that she dumped on me. Angela is the greatest advocate and blessing in Theo's life, without a doubt. Theo's doctor calls Angela "A Tiger Mom".
Angela kept finding groups and conversations to participate in, and different supplements and protocols to follow. I was having a hard time keeping up with all of the information that she was consuming and summarizing for me. I also am not very good at following orders from others. I have to know the "why" for myself.
So I figured there really was no other choice, other than to jump into the study with Angela. For a while, I was in denial. I thought my son was going to grow out of the stage and behaviors that he had been displaying. I am a hopeful person by nature. I can't be bogged down with negativity or I can't function.
However, there came a point that there was no denying that my son was different. Soon after we had received the diagnosis from a specialist at the University of Utah, Angela had researched a new diet that she wanted to try with Theo. She wanted to go Dairy free, and Gluten Free to see if it helped our little man. At the time, Theo wasn't making eye contact, and wasn't responding to his name. I remember very vividly, Eva coming into our room one night crying, asking us: "Why doesn't my brother love me?". Our response was what do you mean, of course he loves you. She said: "He never wants to play with me."
At that point, I knew, I had to be in to see if we could impact anything for Theo. You see, he was developing normally until about 20 months. He was talking, saying about 10-15 words. He was even using 3 signs in sign language. We have videos of this. At about that 20 month mark, he regressed.
As soon as we went Dairy-Free and Gluten-Free, we saw a difference. It was about 2 weeks after we had started this diet that we saw him begin to return to us with his eye contact, and responding to his name. This was eye opening to me. Ok, maybe, just maybe we can do things to help Theo to progress.
That was over 2 years ago. Now I am in a Functional Medicine Coaching Certification that is accredited through The Institute of Functional Medicine. This is a year long course, and it studies everything in the Functional Medicine Matrix. This could include, Mind + Body Medicine, Positive Psychology, Nutrition (Like Mood and Food), Macro and Micro Nutrients (proteins, fats, carbohydrates) + (minerals, vitamins, phytonutrients), meditation, and so much more. I love this course. It is everything that I need personally. Like my soul has been craving this content for years. It is also super helpful for Theo.
We have been learning and implementing a lot about Gut Health. You see, 60-70% of our immune system is housed within our gut. Our gut mainly being made up of our large and small intestines. However, you have other parts of your gut like your pancreas that produces insulin, your liver and your kidneys that process food and detoxify your body. The health of your gut greatly impacts your overall health. Dr. Andrew Wakefield was one of the first doctors to come up with the term "Gut-Brain Connection". This has been proven for us as a family.
You have probably read about Theo's Fecal Microbiota Transplant. If not, check it out here:https://purelivingfamily.com/blogs/news/a-total-gut-reset. We have already seen incredible results. We did this procedure 3 weeks ago. and Theo is eating better, listening to directions and commands way better, and his overall mood has been happy. Theo has been on antibiotics off and on for the last year, because he was also diagnosed with PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune NeuroPsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus Infections). Basically his body is bombarded with a strep infection throughout. In the past, you would be able to see his little body cringe from pain when he would have a flare up. Thankfully over the last 3 weeks, we have not seen any flare ups. Please bless that still remains the case.
This brings us to today and this blog post. I know without a doubt that I was spiritually guided to the FMCA (Functional Medicine Coaching Academy). I will be posting once a week about the things that I am learning in my course, and my personal experiences in implementing the different food plans and learnings.
I am also about done with my 200 Hr Yoga Certification through https://settled.life/. Maria Johnson has a rich history and experience to draw from as a yoga instructor. I have thoroughly enjoyed learning not just the yoga asanas (poses), but the history and theology behind yoga practice. Yoga is so much more than becoming more flexible. Yoga is therapeutic and meditative for me. With so much chaos and demands placed on you as a parent to a kid with special needs, you need a balancing practice to take care of yourself. Can you remain calm, when storms are happening all around you? I am getting better at this; however, I still have a lot of practice to do. Perfection might be impossible to achieve, but I can progress on the perfection scale.
I am creating this company and this blog to share our learnings with our people. We have seen how powerful parents can be when they share their experiences together. We as a community can lift each other up, inspire each other as we do everything under the sun to help our kids to reach their highest potential. Just remember, we can't challenge our kids everyday if we are not willing to challenge ourselves. This is a community to challenge and better ourselves, so we can be our best for the beautiful souls that we have been blessed with.
#specialneedsparents #autism #pandas #functionalmedicine #yoga #selfcare #metime #challengeyourself #selfactualization #reachyourpotential