mamagotcha: (flower)
My mother passed away three years ago. And here's a story about what happened next. )
mamagotcha: (tattoo)
So... my mother had a constellation of symptoms that eventually killed her. One of the worst things, for her, was the constant brain fog that clouded her focus (she was a nursing practitioner and had finished law school... her brain meant a LOT to her).

When she was towards the end of her life, I asked her physician if she could possibly have Multiple System Atrophy. He hemmed and hawed at me, and since there is no treatment or cure, I didn't pursue it. But it's always been bothering me that we never really knew what happened to her.

In the last year, I have been having these attacks of brain fog, as well as the psoriasis (it's under control with the light therapy supplemented by occasional topical steroid use, but it's definitely still there). I hadn't connected the fog and skin/joint issues until I found out about gluten intolerance, and so I've been experimenting with it. When I eat gluten-free, I definitely have fewer problems with the brain fog and joint pain. And while I was told that brain fog was a menopausal symptom... it turns out that ataxia is the most common sign of gluten intolerance. Joint pain is the second-most common.

I started to wonder... is there a possibility that the brain fog that plagued my mother in the years leading up to her decline and death was from gluten intolerance? One study says there is evidence to "suggest a possible role for gluten sensitivity in the pathogenesis of some cases of MSA." There are more studies that suggest a similar finding.

Turns out undiagnosed celiac problems can also cause earlier menopause and miscarriages. And quite a number of people start having more problems with gluten when they hit menopause.

I'm starting to think that going gluten-free is possibly a really, REALLY good idea for me.
mamagotcha: (Default)
Okay, I hope I'm not just irritating everyone now with this project... but I tried Vimeo and so far they're not being jerks about the music for my mom's memorial videos.

Here's the main memorial vid:

Connie Sabin: A Celebration of Her Life from Katje Sabin on Vimeo.



And here's the one of her photography:

Connie Sabin's photography from Katje Sabin on Vimeo.



Thanks, everyone, for your patience and support. I can't believe it's only been 24 days since she left us... it feels like a year.
mamagotcha: (Default)
I know you guys are sick of this whole memorial thing, but just in case you're curious about what the memorial looked like, here are some photos from the event.

Julia took most of these... thanks, Jules!
mamagotcha: (Default)
I just finished sending out my mom's obituary to the newspapers. If you're interested, it's behind the cut. )

Of course, any friends in the area are certainly welcome to join the celebration, whether you knew her personally or not... she was always up for meeting new folks, and she definitely subscribed to the notion of "the more, the merrier!" It would also be fabulous to meet/visit with you.

Julia arrived yesterday, and has been a huge help. She even got to visit a bit with my Aunt Kathy, who hadn't seen her since she was about four. The boys arrive tomorrow.

My days have been filled with the search for photos... my mom was always shooting pictures, and we have about a million of the kids, but there are very, very few shots of HER. One rich source of images involved donning a full hazmat suit... photographic evidence and story coming up soon. Julia and I are down to the last few boxes, and I'll start scanning in earnest once my laptop arrives.

A million thanks to the friends back in KC who are helping with Bill and the boys.

Back to the picture mines...
mamagotcha: (Default)
i spent most of today working on my tiny little garden: long boring gardening babble. )

got the amazon books on dealing with aging parents... started reading both of them. it looks like my folks are pretty classic examples of what's going on in families all over the U.S.A. these days, and it's only going to get worse in the next few decades. there's a huge population of elderly folks who need specialized care, and a very small (but growing) network of services for them... when the boomers hit retirement age, things will probably start changing faster. but until then, we're looking at a lot of very independent, isolated, angry seniors who resent being told that they need help. at least i know i'm not alone... but i'm also reading that this whole thing is very likely going to go on for years, if not decades. this is not encouraging... but there does seem to be some very good information in these books about how to discuss these issues with elderly parents, and i'm looking forward to using these tools to try to see if we can get things back to an even keel with my folks. nothing new to report from them, which is a nice change. i am feeling a little bit more hopeful now. thank you all again for your kind words of support and encouragement. they mean a lot to me!

tomorrow: finish the mulching, and hammer on a backlog of IJA festival tasks (got a phone call about the festival from Kosovo today! how cool is that?)

happy mother's day to all my magnificent mom friends. you ladies inspire me, make me laugh, listen to my whines, and make me so glad i have my kids, because they're an great excuse to hang out with you! and a special shout-out to my sister, who has a magical mothering energy all her own. enjoy the day!

April 2017

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