Tuesday, January 21, 2014

This Canary is Flying Free!!

Today I am rejoicing and celebrating in God's goodness to me. Today I feel like a bird released from captivity in a cage to once again fly free!! I am so grateful and feeling so blessed!!
People with MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity) are often referred to as canaries as we react to things before others do much like the canary in the mines. I was diagnosed with MCS and chronic leukemia in spring of 2011. I have been getting so much worse in recent months and had lost so much of the ground I had gained in treatment in 2011. Yesterday had an appointment with my environmental doctor who is both an internal medicine MD and a homeopath. I went in feeling quite discouraged and imprisoned in my home. I was looking at a future of potentially being completely housebound and wondering how God would ever be able to use me to do ministry anymore or how I would be able to have others minister to me. I left feeling so improved and hopeful.
Yesterday, my doctor shared that beginning July 15, 2013, the state of Arizona required all construction water tanks, tank trucks and road sweepers to add this acrylic polymer dust suppressant to the water to help settle the dust. This was enacted to lower dust levels enough in the state of Arizona to meet EPA levels which would then enable the state to get federal funds for road building. 
Middle of September is when my increased symptoms began and just kept getting worse and worse.They progressed to the point that last week a short visit to a clothing store caused me to have all my respiratory swelling and asthma symptoms, brain fog and major fatigue, my whole body to swell up and have intense pain so I felt like I was 95 instead of 55. It took over two days for the symptoms to end. Really takes away any joy out of shopping! I have missed numerous events the last couple months due to my reactions including church. When I do attend, I come home sick as it seems the slightest bit of perfumes, scented body care and laundry products set me off.
Middle of September is also when they broke ground on a school they are building less than three blocks from our home. Also two new housing divisions a few blocks north of us started going in. As part of the dust control, besides spraying the nearby construction sites, they send a road sweeper down our street every day or so and of course the winds blow.
I tested very allergic to all acrylics and petrochemicals among many other things in spring of 2011 and went through a long detox process for them , as well as treating me with many supplements and homeopathic allergy drops to control reaction symptoms and 4 day allergy rotation diet.  After about a year I improved enough to function fairly well as long as I avoided certain exposures to fragrances and a few food allergies. Both my environmental doctor and my oncologist think many of my health issues may stem from having my childhood bedroom in an non-ventilated basement where my father also had his art room/silkscreen shop were he used acrylic inks, paints, and paint thinners etc. Of course in the 1960s and 1970s nobody was aware of the dangers of chemical exposures like we are today.
My appointment yesterday lasted over 2 1/2 hours! First Doc got all my monthly labs from the last year that I have for my chronic leukemia to make sure I had no kidney damage. Kidney damage was the only other thing he thought of besides these chemicals that would cause such full body swelling. After my labs confirmed no kidney disease (Praise God!!), he ran a couple tests and quickly confirmed it was as he had suspected – the dust suppressant. While I was there I had to take 20 bottles of oral homeopathic drops that have been designed to mitigate reactions and help my body begin to rid itself of the poisons. Every few bottles they would test my re-activity to decide how many more bottles. I was sent home with a maintenance dose of 10 drops three times a day. I was amazed how much better I felt physically and clearer headed I was afterwards. It was incredible and I felt better than I have since September!!
Last night on our way home we went to an organic gluten free pizza joint for dinner to celebrate and then went for quick trips into both Whole Foods and Target without any reactions!!! Praise God  I am not a complete prisoner of my home and will be able to take part in life !! Lord willing, I  should be able travel for my Dad’s 80th birthday in March and to go see two new grand babies due in the summer. Dancing for joy!!
 Please pray I continue to function well and can be involved in ministry to others as well being ministered to by them. Rejoice with us as we praise God for a better outcome than either of us anticipated and for such a drastic improvement in one afternoon!! I am praying we do not forget and lose the wonder and gratitude we are now feeling.
I am also so very thankful for how God ministered to me, while I was feeling poorly with my bad reactions, through His word and the loving concern of my husband and others. I am grateful for dear friends who would call or text me to pray or share scriptures with me.
Ephesians 3:20 
"Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us",
Feeling so blessed!



  1. So happy you found the problem . . . and a solution! Life without shopping??!!! That would be awful!! Love you!!

  2. Love you too! We need you to come down for another visit and some retail therapy!

  3. Rejoicing with you, my Canary! You look good in yellow (and aqua and blue and lime green). It was a relief to realize that the increase in symptoms over the past few months was not tied to your illness but to this dust suppressant. I am glad you are feeling so much better - no longer SUPPRESSED!