Monthly Archives: July 2012

Tisha B’Av videos

Tisha B’Av is a very hard day.  That’s appropriate, being it’s the saddest day in Jewish history, but it’s more meaningful when there’s something to help you focus on  the significance of the day.

It’s typical of most Jewish communities that there are organized programs and video showings during the day to help people connect with the meaning of Tisha B’Av.  Here in Karmiel, the Young Israel will be having kinos with explanations after shacharis (dh will be speaking then along with several other local rabbis), and then there will be several video presentations for Tisha B’Av.  These will include a children’s video (being shown at two different times), as well as two different video presentations for adults, featuring well-known speakers.

There are also lots of online resources to help you find meaning in the day.  I plan on watching some of these with the kids; I have to take Yirmiyahu for blood work this morning and that’s going to be as much going out as I’m up for.

http://www.ou.org/ – Today there will be a live webcast of Kinos – Rabbi Tzvi Hersh Weinreb’s talk will start at 9 am Jerusalem time.

http://www.kiruv.com/video.php – One Soul, The Road Home, Wiping a Tear, From the Ashes – all suitable for Tisha B’Av

http://vimeo.com/46423843 – Unsettled: Disengagement from Gaza (Expulsion from Gush Katif) – thank you to Chaya Yehudis for mentioning this, it’s very tragic but important and we’ll definitely watch this (when the littles take a nap)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNnwZNwRbdk – Wake the Dawn: The Story of Jerusalem’s Holy Temple

There are online lectures about Tisha B’Av at a number of websites, such as torahanytime.com and naaleh.com, and you can find short inspirational or informational articles or videos at aish.com.  There are lots of other websites; I’m just listing a couple to get you started if you’re interested.

Please feel free to add suggestions, ideally with links, that you’ve found powerful.

Avivah

Checking out another elementary school option

In the past couple of months, I’ve been doing research on different school options – girls high schools, boys high schools, and even elementary schools.  This isn’t because I’m unhappy with the local choices as much as that I’m looking for schools that best reflect my personal values.  (I’m hoping to find time to write some posts in the next month on the American/Israeli charedi differences and share my thoughts on that with you.)

This Tuesday I called the principal of an elementary school that I’m interested in, and she told me that this Thursday is the last opportunity for interested students to apply for entry for the coming year and be interviewed.  I was glad that I made the call in time and that I didn’t have another appointment for the same day!

I was planning to take the baby with me along with ds6 for his interview, but about ten minutes before I left realized that since I pump and prepare a bottle of my milk for when I’m out with him (we’re in a transitory situation regarding nursing), I could really leave the baby at home and he’d probably be a lot more rested!  On the spur of the moment, I asked ds4 if he wanted to come along, so he rushed to get dressed and then out the three of us went to catch our bus.  From there we went to the central bus station, then onto another bus to another city where the school is located.

I was so happy that I took ds4 along – his eyes were literally shining with excitement as he was looking out the window at all the sights, and he and his brother were so cute sitting and chatting excitedly together on the bus.  I was glad to have a chance to spend with both of them, since recently I haven’t been giving them as much time and attention as I’d like, and this was a great opportunity to be with them without distraction or interruption by anyone or anything else.

We got to the yeshiva, and I was surprised by the big and beautiful campus.  We couldn’t figure how to get in at first, but once we did we found the office and went in.  Since we were early, ds6 was taken for his interview pretty quickly, which lasted for almost an hour.  This didn’t go so well, since he felt intimidated by the new situation and it being in Hebrew, and spoke very hesitantly and quietly – though usually he’s very outgoing and confident.  Though his spoken Hebrew is good and adequate to speak comfortably with his peers, he told me afterward that he didn’t know certain words in Hebrew – eg triangle, rectangle – and therefore couldn’t answer some questions even though he knew the answers.  It’s ironic that his kindergarten teacher joked with her assistant that he shouldn’t bother with first grade, he should just go directly into second because he’s so advanced and constantly was telling me how amazing he was, while the interviewer wasn’t sure if he had an understanding of some basic concepts that even my four year old knows easily!  Emotional context and comfort makes a huge difference in a child’s performance.

In the meantime, I let ds4 take some of the refreshments that had been put out (this kind of thing is a bit of a thrill for a young child who doesn’t get loads of treats at home!), while I scoped out the kids and parents who were arriving.  I was trying to get a sense of who the parent and student body of the school were; I already knew that the focus of the administration was in line with what we like.

I was favorably impressed by the school staff; the parent body seems to be a good match for us, the school values and direction seem to be a good match for us, the local boys who would be in his class are great kids from families who know and like very much, and though we had pretty much decided to transfer ds6 to this school before the interview, I had an increasingly conflicted feeling.

The conflict isn’t because of the school, which I think is a great choice, but because of the distance.  Transportation is provided to and from the school, so there isn’t a logistical issue, but for a young child to spend another two hours a day away from home in order to travel to school is something that I’m not comfortable with.  It means that he’d have to be waiting for his bus at 7 am and come home at 3 pm (with the additional stress to have him at the bus stop on time – it wouldn’t be outside of our house).  It means he would miss eating breakfast and lunch with the rest of us.  It means not walking to school with ds10 and dd11 and missing the relationship building opportunity with them.   (This past year ds13 picked him up from school for the last couple of months of the year, and it was really nice for ds6 to have time with his older brother, especially since ds13 usually gave him fruit to eat on the way home. :))  It means fifteen hours a week (transportation time plus the school day is 30 minutes longer than the local school) that he’d be spending with his peers in an unstructured situation instead of at home where parents and older siblings are keeping an eye on social interactions.

I know that most parents wouldn’t agree with me that any of these points justify not sending him to a better school, with secular and Torah studies on a higher level and a religiously stronger peer group.  But to me, all of the advantages don’t add up to fifteen extra hours away from home every single week – would he really gain so much socially, academically or spiritually to offset the gains of being at home?  I’m not at all confident that would be the case.

So at this point, dh and I have  decided to leave ds6 enrolled at the local school (just a seven minute walk from our home!), because we feel that having more time with our family is a higher value than being in a school that is technically the best fit.  We’re still discussing the possibility of a transfer to this school in the upper elementary grades, but for now, it’s one more decision made and out of the way!

Avivah

Craniosacral work for baby, Mozart for brain development

Today I spent the first part of my day in Tzfat, where I had two appointments.  Since I already had one appointment scheduled in the city, I thought it would be good to maximize my time in the area and found a craniosacral therapist there to treat the baby, so that was my second appointment.

I think that craniosacral therapy is valuable, particularly for a newborn who has recently had to fit through the birth canal and probably experienced some kind of pressure on the skull that causes misalignment.  There are a number of potential issues that can be positively impacted by doing craniosacral adjustments, including colic, difficulty in sleeping or feeding, and birth trauma.  The main downside of this therapy is that it’s not something that is covered by health insurance, but then again, it seems that most of what I find most valuable relating to health care isn’t!

Another thing I had wanted to do this morning was to meet up with someone in the area giving away classical music cassettes.  I’ve been doing hours of research on Down syndrome every day beginning when the baby was two days old, and one thing that I came across was the importance of music therapy in stimulating the brain.  Mozart and Bach were particularly recommended.

I started looking into purchasing some classical music (you should see the list of things I think would be valuable to buy for this baby!) but was delighted to see a posting a short time later by someone in Tzfat giving away lots of classical cassettes.  A neighbor had given me a cd/cassette player around Pesach time, so I have a way to play the cassettes.  I emailed to ask if she had any Mozart or Bach, and sure enough, she did!  I told her why I wanted them and she very generously put aside 11 cassettes for me, 6 Mozart and 5 Bach!  That was such an amazing thing!  I’m looking forward to using them next week after Tisha B’Av.

And on a different note, traveling to Tzfat made me once again appreciative that the baby was in the NICU in Nahariya rather than the Tzfat hospital that I was in labor at.  The ride there is along a winding road and so nauseating that I don’t know how I would have managed it every day.  I took dd11 and ds10 with me today, thinking they would enjoy walking around the Old City of Tzfat while I was taking care of my appointments.  Poor ds10 tends to get carsick, and threw up on the way there and the way back.  We were all very happy to get home.  :)

Avivah

Goodbye ‘Squiggles’ – our new baby has a name!

Today I looked in my planner and saw the following notation:  !!due date!!

Guess we’re past that.  :)

But it’s the perfect day to share about our new baby’s bris and name!

On Sunday afternoon we had his bris at a local shul, and were delighted by how many people made time to join us.  It was a diverse crowd, with people identifying as secular, traditional, Torani and charedi all attending.  We had Israelis and Americans, those who were living here for many years and those who were just visiting for a short time.

There were so many nice things about the people who came that I’m afraid to share about some and not others in the fear someone will feel I appreciated the presence of some people more than others – and every single person literally added to our simcha.  But I’ll say that it was especially wonderful to have some friends from Baltimore who were able to be there with us – there’s nothing like old friends!  Dd15’s best friend came with her brother, who is a very good friend of ds13.  And another family we’re friendly with came as well, with three of their children (all of whom our children were friendly with); all of these people happened to be visiting Israel now.  So our kids also had the chance to share the simcha with people they had known for a long time (and then three of their friends slept over so they could have more time together – so, so nice!).

Until now, the kids have been calling the baby ‘Squiggles’, and three weeks was a long time for them to wait for his real name!  After the name was given, a number of people asked me if he was named after anyone – no, he wasn’t.  He was given a name that we felt was a reflection of his soul.

In Jewish tradition, it’s believed that after a baby is born, the parents are given a measure of divine inspiration to choose a name that fits the soul purpose of the child.  For every child, dh and I have discussed possible names during pregnancy, and every single time, the names we thought we liked and would want to use were put to the side for names that we thought of after the baby was born.  So we learned the futility of trying to plan ahead!

However, this baby was different.  When I was pregnant, we were talking about names, and dh made this suggestion.  As soon as he suggested this name (because it ties in well with the Three Weeks, this time period in the Jewish calendar), I knew it was the right name.   So much so that I did something I’ve never done before, I called’ the baby this name when I had conversations with him in my head and then used this name when speaking to him soon after he was born. (I’ve never used a name until the baby was officially named.)  After his birth when we learned that he had Trisomy 21, I said to my husband, “Now we can see what a perfect name it is for him!”

Yirmiyahu (3 weeks) at bris

So what is this marvelous name for our marvelous baby? :)  The baby’s name is Yirmiyahu (in English, Jeremiah or Jeremy), and it means ‘G-d will uplift’.  We have seen so much blessing in our lives, especially in the last eleven months since moving to Israel, even in the face of many challenges.  Now we were sent our new baby boy, and this is a special gift on top of all the other gifts.  We feel G-d has uplifted us with his birth and that’s why his name is so perfect for him!

Avivah

The Special Mother

Below is the second piece that a friend sent me after I shared with her that we were awaiting results of genetic testing to see if our baby had Trisomy 21.  I had never read this before, and it brought tears to my eyes when I did.

The Special Mother 

by Erma Bombeck 


Most women become mothers by accident, some by choice,
a few by social pressure and a couple by habit.
This year nearly 100,000 women will become mothers of handicapped children.
Did you ever wonder how these mothers are chosen?
Somehow I visualize God hovering over Earth
Selecting his instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation.
As he observes, he instructs his angels to take notes in a giant ledger.
“Armstrong, Beth, son. Patron Saint, Matthew.”
“Forrest, Marjorie, daughter. Patron Saint, Celia.”
“Rutledge, Carrie, twins. Patron Saint…give her Gerard. He’s used to profanity.”
Finally he passes a name to an angel and smiles. “Give her a handicapped child.”
The angel is curious. “Why this one, God? She’s so happy.”
“Exactly,” smiles God. “Could I give a handicapped child a mother who knows no laughter?
That would be cruel.”
“But does she have the patience?” asks the angel.
“I don’t want her to have too much patience, or she’ll drown in a sea of self-pity and despair.
Once the shock and resentment wear off she’ll handle it.”
“I watched her today.
She has that sense of self and independence so rare and so necessary in a mother.
You see, the child I’m going to give her has a world of it’s own.
She has to make it live in her world, and that’s not going to be easy.”
“But Lord, I don’t think she even believes in you.”
God smiles. “No matter, I can fix that. This one is perfect. She has just enough selfishness.”
The angel gasps, “Selfishness? Is that a virtue?”
God nods. “If she can’t separate herself from the child occasionally, she will never survive.
Yes, here is a woman whom I will bless with a child less than perfect.
She doesn’t know it yet, but she is to be envied.
She will never take for granted a spoken word.
She will never consider a step ordinary.
When her child says momma for the first time, she will be witness to a miracle and know it.
I will permit her to see clearly the things I see–ignorance, cruelty,
prejudice–and allow her to rise above them.
She will never be alone.
I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life
Because she is doing my work as surely as she is here by my side.”
“And what about her Patron Saint?” asks the angel, his pen poised in the air. God smiles.
“A mirror will suffice.”

Avivah

Welcome to Holland

When I first got the news that our baby might have Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome), I shared this with just a couple of friends.

One of them sent me two beautiful pieces, both of which I’ll share with you (one today, one in a day or two).  The  first was this one, which I had actually read years ago.  I think this applies to so many areas in life; we think we know what we want and that’s what is best for us.  And then we have to resolve within ourselves the difference between what we wanted and what we got.

WELCOME TO HOLLAND

By Emily Perl Kingsley.

c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability – to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It’s like this……

When you’re going to have a baby, it’s like planning a fabulous vacation trip – to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It’s all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, “Welcome to Holland.”

“Holland?!?” you say. “What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I’m supposed to be in Italy. All my life I’ve dreamed of going to Italy.”

But there’s been a change in the flight plan. They’ve landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven’t taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It’s just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It’s just a different place. It’s slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you’ve been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around…. and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills….and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy… and they’re all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say “Yes, that’s where I was supposed to go. That’s what I had planned.”

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away… because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

But… if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn’t get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things … about Holland.

 Avivah

Acceptance of genetic test results and intuition

I shared in my last post how several medical professionals all commented on my positive response to the possibility of our baby having Trisomy 21.

I value emotional honesty and I’ve asked myself a number of times in the last couple of weeks if I’m suppressing my true emotions about our baby’s diagnosis.  After all, it seems most people cry and are upset about this before moving on to happiness or even acceptance – why didn’t I cry?  Why am I not upset?  It’s not because I’m on a high spiritual level, that’s for sure.  But it’s also not because I’m in denial or shutting down emotionally.  I think that Hashem (G-d) prepared me for this emotionally when I was still pregnant and that’s why I was able to so quickly come to terms with our baby having Down syndrome.

When the doctor told me that first night that they saw signs that made them suspect Down syndrome, I suddenly remembered the strong feeling I had repeatedly had in the middle of my pregnancy – that our baby would have Down syndrome.  I kept pushing this thought to the side as being illogical and eventually forgot about it until that moment.  As I thought about it, I also remembered the reading online I had done at that point – I don’t know what made me read about Down syndrome because this was certainly not relevant to my life at the time and I don’t make time to read about things that aren’t relevant or of interest to me; maybe you could say it was intuition.

Whatever you call it, I didn’t just passively follow a link that happened to be about Down syndrome.  I actively did a google search – “inspiration about Down syndrome” – searching for something to allay the strong inner feeling I had.  I did a lot of reading – I even read an e-book about how to homeschool a child with Down syndrome! – and shared with a couple of my children some of the pictures on the websites that I was reading.  It was after that I did all of this reading that I stopped having thoughts about the baby having Down syndrome and totally forgot about my concerns until it came flooding back to me right after the doctor told us.  And when she did speak to us, the feelings of appreciation and joy for their special children that parents expressed was all that I thought of.

I also remembered two key statements.  One was from a friend (whose nine year old has DS) who told me several years ago, “If there’s something that’s got to be wrong, Down syndrome is the absolute best thing you can have.”  She went on to tell me, “Down syndrome is just not that big a deal.”

The other statement was from a blog reader in my comments section –   “At his upsher my husband said that he cried when he realized that he had down syndrome…..and that is his only regret!!!! He said they should have been tears of joy!!!”  I shared this with dh several months ago when it was posted, and then again that night.  The perspectives of all of these parents gave us something to hold on to, a path to walk down without feeling afraid of the unknown.

When I had conversations in my head with my baby while pregnant (I don’t talk out loud, though many women do), I had two phrases I would always ‘say’ to him.  I would tell him, “We love and accept you just as you are”, and “Don’t worry, it’s a good world.”  The second phrase was my personal response to a true story I read many years ago by a mother who during labor that stalled ‘heard’ a message from her baby, saying she was afraid to be born because she had Down syndrome.  And the mother basically reassured her baby that they would love her, her labor restarted, and the baby was indeed born with Down syndrome.  Why was this the story that I repeatedly thought of when I was pregnant?  I didn’t know then, but I had a very strong feeling of needing to reassure our baby that he was wanted and that this world would be a safe place for him.  When he was born it became obvious to me why those were the messages that he needed to ‘hear’ throughout pregnancy.

Also, for the past few months I’ve been giving classes on the weekly Torah portion.  And as much as I’ve been thanked for this, I can say with certainty that it’s been of more value to me than anyone attending.  That’s because each and every week, I spend a significant amount of time learning and reading, looking for messages that resonate with me that I want to share with others of practical day to day wisdom from our Torah.  Often, this message has been connected to how everything that happens to us is for our good and for our growth, even when it doesn’t seem that way at all – sometimes I wonder if I’m being too redundant about sharing thoughts on this! And when you think about something so much, and then share about it with others, it makes an impression on you.

Overall my feeling is one of being very fortunate and blessed!  This baby is our tenth child and our seventh son.  Both the numbers ten and seven have the spiritual qualities of completion in Judaism, and I feel certain that this baby is bringing some kind of spiritual completion to our family.

Avivah

Genetic test results…

This morning dh and I traveled to Nahariya to meet with a genetic specialist to get results of testing that was done when the baby was in the hospital.  After 2.5 weeks, we finally have some definite answers!

When our baby was about three hours old, a doctor told dh that he had some features that are common to babies with Trisomy 21 ( also known as Down syndrome), but, she added, sometimes within a few hours these features change.  When dh told me that, I paused for about half a minute to think about that, and then said, “That doesn’t make any sense.  How can features change, and what features is she talking about?”

Dh didn’t know, and when I saw the doctor for the first time an hour or so later, after she finished telling us about all the medical issues the baby was facing I asked her what features she was commenting on.  After she told me, I said, “You’re pretty sure it’s Down syndrome, aren’t you?”  “Yes”,  she nodded, as she looked back at me worriedly.  Okay, I thought to myself, so that’s it.

I took the baby for a nursing session and told dh what she said.  We both felt that Hashem (G-d) was giving us a vote of confidence, as if to say, “You’ve dealt with all the challenges I’ve sent you so well that now I know you can be trusted to raise this special gift.”   It’s hard for me to describe this without sounding woo-woo, but I had a sense of Hashem shining a loving light all over dh and me and our baby.

The next morning, a nurse came in to ask me how I was doing and talk to me; she was sent because they want to be emotionally supportive of parents who are getting news like this.  It turns out she was an English speaker and I enjoyed chatting with her.  She told me what an amazing attitude I have, and that she’s not worried about me emotionally – she even told me that I’m going to add a lot to the support community for DS here in Israel!  (I thought that was highly optimistic of her being that after the first night in the hospital I was seriously sleep deprived.)

After her a social worker came in to talk to me, and within just a minute or two of meeting me said, “I don’t know why, but I have a sense that you’ve already accepted this and feel peace about the situation.”  And I told her she was right, and then shared with her my thoughts that our newest baby was purely a blessing and nothing else.  Our baby is our baby and he is precious to us no matter what; hearing about the likelihood of Down syndrome didn’t change our feelings toward him at all (except to make us feel even more loving and protective of him).

Later on I would speak with doctors, mostly neonatologoists – though at one meeting I met with the head neonatologist, the pediatric hematologist, and the geneticist all at once.  (Having these medical conversations in Hebrew was definitely a linguistic stretch!)  Each of them told me all the specifics about the baby’s situation that they were each responsible for; the geneticist was last.  And she said to me, “I don’t know how – is it faith? – but you seem very accepting about this.”  But we still didn’t have a firm diagnosis, and until the testing was done, we didn’t discuss the possibility of T21 with any but a very few close friends.

Unfortunately, the first testing results failed and had to be done from the beginning, which meant that we didn’t get a diagnosis until today.  Waiting was really the hardest thing about this situation, since our inclination was to be open with whoever we spoke to about the baby and we couldn’t do that.

Dh and I left the house at 5:40 am to make our bus connections to get to our 8 am appointment at the genetic institute – they won’t give results over the phone – and it was oddly anticlimactic once we got there.  Basically the geneticist said, “Just as you already thought, it’s Down syndrome.”  Then she showed us a picture of the typical chromosome arrangement, then a chart that showed the T21 chromosome arrangement, then asked if we had any questions.  (I thought to myself, “This is what I woke up at 4 am for???)  When scheduling appointments they leave time for counseling the parents but we really didn’t need any help in coming to terms with this, so that’s why our appointment was so brief!

We had to see the pediatric hematologist while there, as well as the social worker, and dh commented when we finally left the hospital that it seemed as if all the staff we encountered was expecting to catch us emotionally as we fell apart -they all had furrowed brows and concerned looks as they asked us what we had heard from genetics that morning, and then asked us how we were doing when we told them the results showed T21.  (I told him that’s how it was the entire time I was at the hospital -he wasn’t there after the first night.)

I’m really glad to have the official diagnosis and no longer have ambiguity about what we’re dealing with.  Not only that, today we got the go ahead from the hematologist for the bris, which will take place on Sunday afternoon.  We feel so blessed with all the good that is overflowing in our lives!

Avivah

Supplements for female hair restoration

About eight weeks ago, one of my daughters started experiencing sudden and dramatic hair loss.  After a few days she mentioned it to me so I got her started on some vitamins; I thought it might be a seasonal change or something about the water here, but I wasn’t concerned.  When it was continuing a few days after that, I took a look.  As soon as I saw her scalp, I got a sick feeling in my stomach because the loss was much more visible than I was expecting to see – in a week and a half she had lost half of her hair – and I immediately made an appointment with a naturopath.

The naturopath made some suggestions for dietary adjustments (not really different from how we were already eating), some suggestions for supplements (that I had already given dd), and some suggestions for relaxation.  Hair loss like this is generally connected to stress, and when we got home from our appointment I gave dd some of my relaxation cds to listen to at night.  I also got busy online doing more research and looking for answers because I wasn’t confident that the suggestions we received were enough, since I had already been implementing prior to the appointment and the hair loss hadn’t slowed down.

I also took dd to the pediatrician, who didn’t bother looking at her scalp and told her she shouldn’t feel stressed.  Then she chastised her for not speaking Hebrew more fluently (though she didn’t even hear her say anything – she only heard me ask dd if she understood a medical term that was being used and that dd said no) and started lecturing her about needing to read books in Hebrew to her younger siblings to improve her Hebrew.  Dd and I afterwards were like, was that supposed to be helpful?  Whatever.  All I needed from her was a recommendation for blood work so we smiled and left once we had that.  It’s a good thing I wasn’t relying on her help to resolve the situation, because I would have been shopping for wigs given another couple of weeks of things continuing as they were.

Despite our efforts, the hair loss got worse before it got better.  Dd had a great attitude about it and we tried to stay positive and optimistic that her hair would start growing back soon.  Dd religiously followed the protocol given to her by the naturopath, along with my additions, and after about a month from when her hair first started falling out,there was a visible change.  One day she told me, “Mommy, look at my hairline – all these are new hairs!”  All over her head she had new hairs filling in where the scalp had been visible before.  When she said that I got a huge lump in my throat and almost started crying; I had been really worried.  It was then that I told her I had been afraid she was going to lose all of her hair, and she shared that she had been worried about the same thing.

Obviously I’m not a doctor and not making promises that what worked for us will work for anyone else, but I’ll share what we did.  (Those with an asterisk in front were recommended by the naturopath.)

  • vitamin D – 2000 IU
  • *vitamin C – 1-2000 mg
  • *vitamin B complex – 500 mg
  • *vitamin B12 – 1200 mg
  • *zinc – 60 mg x 2 daily
  • cod liver oil – 1 teaspoon
  • homeopathic cell salts – silica 6x, 4 pills several times a day
  • liquid activated silicon – 10 drops

There were some other things I suggested dd do, like scalp massage, hanging upside down for a few minutes in the evening to stimulate blood flow to the scalp and the use of rosemary oil but she didn’t do any of those.

After seeing dd’s hair growing back, the naturopath told me that in situations like this, it’s not called hair loss but alopecia.  I’m really glad I didn’t know that beforehand, because I know only enough about alopecia that hearing the term would have worried me even more.  Thankfully this is now a situation that has been resolved!

Avivah

Why Holland disappeared

A number of you noticed that yesterday’s Holland post disappeared a few hours after it was posted and contacted me to find out what’s going on.

That post was originally scheduled for yesterday, but because I’m waiting for some test results, a few days ago I rescheduled it for the end of this week.  Since I’m having computer issues right now, the computer shut down before it saved and without me realizing it, the post went up prematurely.  That post as well as another article I referenced will be up this weekend, I hope.

In the meantime, I’ll be sharing about other things that are going on. :)

Sorry about the confusion!

Avivah