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Hi, welcome back everyone, I’m your host Sarah Southwell, founder of GroWise Be Well, a holistic and inspirational lifestyle company for families of all shapes and sizes. GroWise Be Well, empowering you.
Hello again, it’s Sarah Southwell, founder of GroWise Be Well, here today to share a little bit of my story, my life, just so that maybe, you’re curious, maybe it will make you laugh, maybe you’ll learn something, maybe you’ll just listen and have it as background noise. Whatever you want to use it as, go for it.
Today, I really want to talk to you all about a recent experience I’ve had and it brought up all of these memories from when I was a child which was very, very interesting for me. I recently ordered in these health test kits for my family, from a company called Viome.
I had been looking at a biohacking site a little bit ago because I like to bio hack in my life, which I can talk about it in another episode. But basically, that’s taking what you’ve been given and then using vitamins, supplements, infrared, all kinds of things, to take your organic structure you’ve been given and make it stronger, better, so that you can remember things more or so you can have more energy or sleep better, whatever your goal is, there is a biohacking method out there that will work for you.
So it’s really fascinating, it’s just basically putting the idea of manipulating or should I say, I like to experiment on myself and so, experimenting with how these different inputs affect me and will they affect me to where I feel better than I did before?
So, it’s fascinating and it’s fun but I was looking at this biohacking site and I saw this company Viome and I took a look at them and they looked good and so I ordered these kits in for myself and my family because, when I do testing on myself. When it comes to allergy or health testing, I typically do t he whole family because I think that my children will really appreciate having this baseline as they get older.
So if they test every 10 years, then, if something goes awry later on in their life and they need to kind of retrace their steps and track back and find out, “Okay, well at this age, I felt really good” right? Then they can take a look at their levels and try and get back to that.
So I like to give them these baselines and so I got these test kits in and it requires biological samples, which is always a little difficult with children. Honestly, it’s difficult with adults too. I mean, I wasn’t super thrilled about having to prick my finger and get the blood out of my finger. In fact, I botched it pretty good, they may have to send out another sample for blood, I don’t know. But, it requires a blood sample and it requires a stool simple and that was all very interesting and funny and challenging and a bit stressful with kids.
Now my kids aren’t super young. Actually, I think the stool sample would have gone over really well if my kids were young but now that they’re older, they’re like, “Oh man, that’s so gross” and I’m like, “Yeah, okay, I know.”
So anyway, so these came in and yesterday was our big day to do it all and get all the tests done and yeah, it’s just fascinating, the challenges we have, you know, the paper they sent to put across the toilet to collect your stool sample fell into the toilets but we had to like, do it again but this time, I decided, “You know what? Forget the paper, we’re just going to put a bowl under there” right?
Which is so bizarre and you know, probably too much information, you guys probably don’t want to hear anything about that but it worked, it worked and then of course, pricking the finger. I mean, I have a couple of children that are extremely sensitive and as you all know, my oldest son was on the autism spectrum for years, for 12 years of his life and you know, he really has a hard time with pain.
Then, my youngest son is extremely sensitive to touch. So his pain tolerance is even lower than my older son. So it was definitely a challenge to get those two to get their finger pricked. I will say, my youngest son did it like a champ, he got right up there and did it right away. So my older son had much more troubles with it. He spent an entire day having to fight himself, battle himself and he really wanted to do it but he just couldn’t and then finally this morning, he got it done. So you know, huge success in overcoming his fear, right? I mean, he even said to me last night, he said, “It’s not about getting the blood sample anymore, is it? It’s about pricking my finger” and I’m like, “You got it, kid.”
That’s exactly where we’re at now, because it’s about him, knowing what it feels like to be on the other side of that wall of fear that he’s built up and it’s beautiful out here, right? On the other side of fear and he built that wall. He can create the gate, he can tear it down, he can go right outside that wall whenever he wants and I could tell he really wanted to but it was really, really hard for him so today was great success. We celebrated.
So, I ordered these kits in and you know, my kids have questions like, “Well, what if they come back and they tell me that I can’t eat cheese?” or you know, “I can’t have chocolate” or you know, typical questions, right? Typical concerns frankly and I think for any adult, I mean, I certainly said, well, if they come back and tell me that I can’t have caffeine, I’d be like, “Heh, forget it, I guess this test is no good”
No, I’m kidding. I will simply just be aware of it and that’s what I told them. Look, this is all just for information. We are not going to take this as the scripture, right? As a bible, as like, you know, this is the way you’re going to live your life, this is just information and if you eat a lot of cheese and you feel bad, well then, you’re going to know why. So, it’s all about gathering information. I feel like that’s what life is all about and I love it. I’m always reading and always gathering information. It fascinates me, the things that I don’t know.
So they kind of calmed down and got okay with that once they understood that. Yesterday, when my son wouldn’t do is blood test, you know, I got to the point where I was threatening him, you know? It’s like, “Okay, well, you can’t go to baseball practice tonight” or “You know, you can’t play your game until you get your finger pricked” and then I realized at the end of the day, what am I doing?
I mean, this is – that’s not okay. He needs to do this of his own free will and that’s the only way that he’s going to truly overcome the fear of the unknown, because that’s really what it was, fear of the unknown, because that’s really what I was, fear of the unknown, what’s going to happen, what’s it really going to feel like, that scares me, I don’t know, I don’t know, right?
It was really, how do I lovingly support him in overcoming his own fear and so I said, “You know what kid? I’m sorry, you’re going to play baseball, I shouldn’t have threatened anything like that but every morning, when you get up, I’m going to ask you if you’re ready because, it’s really you that needs to make this decision” and he said, “Oh, my last memory of doing this is you held me down and pricked my finger” you know, years ago.
I’m like, “Okay, well, we need to replace that memory” and so, the only way we were going to do that in a positive way was for him to do it himself. So I also could not imagine like him, as a 35-year-old being like, “Yeah, nobody’s pricking my finger. I suffered my whole life ‘till now because mom took everything away from me. She took baseball, she took – I’ll tell you what, nobody’s touching this finger”, you know?
It’s like, I can just imagine him at 35 like, you know, just being so proud that nobody’s touching this finger and I’m just, “Oh man, no-no-no-no-no. I don’t want that life for you, I don’t want that future for you. So let’s figure out a way for me to express to you that I think this is important for you, it’s good for you, I love you, I’ve always been there for you, I have been working so hard your entire life to help you live a very joyful, very healthy life and I wouldn’t ask you to do this if I didn’t think it was best for you.”
So how do I do that? Every day, right? Just patience and perseverance and that loving acceptance of, “Okay, you’re not ready, all right, well we’ll try tomorrow” right? Just hang in there and reinforce that I will love him no matter what and even if he chose that he couldn’t get beyond it and that he never did the blood test, I’d still love him.
I would feel bad for him though, that he wasn’t able to get past that wall of fear and so now, today, he knows what it’s like to consciously make that decision to get past that wall of fear, to prick his finger and get that blood test done. It was interesting, because, when all of the kind of discussion yesterday was going on about him doing this test, right? Everybody else had already done it, he was really the only one all day long.
He had to process, he had to talk, he had to walk work it through, I mean it took all day and then of course, obviously, he didn’t do the test until this morning but you know, last night, I was lying there, thinking, “Oh my gosh, I remember being my youngest son’s age” we may be even younger. Probably younger. I think I was like eight, eight or nine when my parents took me in for my allergy testing and then, it was old school.
I don’t know if they still do it this way or not but I went into the allergy doctor’s office and he put me on an exam table and you know, they had me pull up my shirt and lay down on my stomach and they pricked my entire back with like 60 to a hundred different allergens and whichever one swelled up the most, were the ones that I was allergic to and so, I’m sitting here thinking to myself. “Wow, my kids don’t have to go through that today. That is so awesome.”
I love where we’ve come in all of this but I also want to say to my son, he wouldn’t get his finger pricked like, “Hey man, it could be a lot worse.” I mean, you have to live with these, like, itchy bumps on your back for days, you know? Because you’re allergic to those things and they’re irritating you and some of them get red and really itchy and really puffed up and anyway, it’s no fun, no fun.
Then I had to go in every month, I think it was and get an allergy shot, every month, as my parents got older, I think they went in like every week or something and got an allergy shot, it was – it seems kind of crazy to me but I did that until I was 18 and then I just told my parents, “I don’t want to do this anymore, I really – I don’t want to go forward in my life like this” and thankfully, they were very accepting of that.
They certainly were like, “Oh you’re going to regret this, you’re going to have allergy symptoms, you’re going to come back, you’re going to want to get this done again but okay, if that’s what you want to do for now, right? You’re 18, I guess you can do that” and I never went back and they were accepting, right? They didn’t’ get upset with me which was wonderful but there is a long period of my life where I was allergic to things or I perceived that I was allergic to things and I had to get a shot and I had to avoid things.
I mean, my entire youth I was allergic to dairy, and back then, they didn’t have alternative ice cream, they didn’t have vegan cheese. I mean, they didn’t have any options. So my only option was no dairy whatsoever. I mean, that meant going without Hershey’s chocolate because Hershey’s chocolate has a ton of dairy in it. I mean so my whole youth was like weird, right?
People will be like, “What? You’re allergic to milk? You know, what’s wrong with you? What do you mean you can’t have ice cream? What do you mean you don’t like ice cream? What do you mean you can’t have a chocolate bar?” So it was definitely and uncomfortable youth for me in the terms of you know, being I guess normal, and maybe that helped formed me into being okay with not being normal.
So now, I might be considered abnormal by most of society because I talk about things like stool samples and blood tests and all kinds of things that people generally don’t talk about but I say, “Hey, if I’ve been through it and somebody else can learn something from it, I am going to talk about it” because I believe that that is what we’re here together on this planet for this time is to share this information with one another and we don’t want to hide this or keep it to ourselves. This is so important, it lets everybody know that “Oh really? I went through something similar” and then all of a sudden they relax and they feel good, right? They go, “Oh wow, I am not a freak.” I’m like well, I don’t know, I don’t know, you might be but you know, maybe we both are. Anyway, so I was kind of reflecting on that last night and it was really bringing up a lot of those memories and I really wanted this to be different for my children.
I really want them to have a different viewpoint on this testing and what it can mean for them and what it doesn’t have to mean for them. I am not about just removing things that you don’t see a problem with.
So my youngest son, he has a reaction to dairy and his body does not process it well and when we get him tested when he was an infant basically, he was allergic to dairy. He was the only one of us that was allergic to anything. Well, I take that back, my husband was allergic to eggs but my youngest son was allergic to dairy and, to this day, he just doesn’t process it well. So if we’ve kind of fall off the wagon and he cheats and he has a little dairy, he is very unhappy intestinally for a while and so it is really proven to be true and he knows how to feel better, it’s to cut out dairy and he has to cut it out and then stay dairy-free for at least a month. Because it does take a month or two for your gut to heal from something that pokes holes in it, from something that attacks it.
Dairy is a toxin for him, it is not something that his body can even assimilate so it just simply causes more havoc than it does benefit. So he needs to just stay away from that but today, he’s so lucky. Today, I mean my gosh, there’s tons of options for dairy-free things. So he certainly doesn’t go without things, which is wonderful and it makes it feel better when you can have tasty food and join in at the pizza party. So this is a test kit that we sent in and we’re going to get these results back. We have to register the kids and they will I guess, email us or something, maybe when we log into the app underneath the different email addresses, I had to create an email address for all of my children because they don’t yet have a family account where I could log in and then register my children’s kits under me, which I highly recommend.
Viome, if you are listening, if you would please allow a parent to purchase kits for their children and then be able to register them under their email so that all they have to do is log in with their primary parent account and then they can see the results from all of their children’s kits. So if you could get to work on that, that would be great because it is not just adults who want to know this information.
It would really benefit our youth by doing these tests on a regular basis and finding out how they can avoid illness in the future. So let’s start with the youth, so let’s get that family program installed there. So they will then show me on this app, I have a friend actually who recommended this company as well, which was wild, right? I am a big listener to the universe and the information that comes through.
I had found this company through a biohacking site and then literally three weeks later, I have a friend who said, I saw him and they’d been ill. They had been under the weather or I mean ill for a couple of years and had always looked pale and a little bit gaunt and just not full of energy. Well, I saw them and I said, “Oh my gosh, you look great! You have color in your cheeks, you look amazing.”
They said, “Oh yeah, I did this Viome kit and I got all of these results and I have been sticking to it and just eliminating all the foods that are like my kryptonite, right? That just really make me feel bad and I have been eating all the foods that they say are really like my superfoods and I feel fantastic.” I’m like, “Wow, you really do” and so it really tipped the blockade for me to go ahead and just purchase the kits for everybody in my family. Because I thought, “Wow, if that’s what can happen by being aware of how our body assimilates things then I want to do it.”
For instance, he was telling me that one of his foods that makes him feel bad is red meat and he said, “You know because not everybody benefits from eating broccoli.” He was like, “There are a lot of people out there that broccoli is their kryptonite.” So sometimes our society gets it a little mixed up by putting everybody in the same box and saying, “Oh my gosh, you need to eat all of your leafy greens and you need to eat that broccoli.”
It’s like, well, maybe you don’t. I mean, I am looking forward to getting this test result back because I’ve got to be honest with you, I hate broccoli and honestly, it hates me. So I am looking forward to getting these test results back and I am hoping that broccoli is not my superfood because I can’t just believe that it is but I guess if it is, I will give it an honest try. I’ll give it a go but historically, it has not been that way for me.
But I think it is fascinating that you know, we need to stop just going by a food pyramid. We need to stop saying that everybody benefits from the same types of foods. They don’t. We are all so genetically different that we really need to get a genetics test and we really need to have these foods tested against our own personal blood sample before we can really say what we should be eating and what we shouldn’t.
So we also need to listen to our intuition and like me with broccoli, I pick it out of my Thai food because I know that I actually forced myself to eat a lot of broccoli for a week one time because I was like, “Oh maybe Sarah, you just need to kind of get used to it.” Oh my god, I was miserable. I was miserable by the end of that week and I finally said, “That’s it, I am done with my experiment. I can tell this is not for me.”
So I did that without a test. I mean, you can figure out what your body just really hums from and what your body hates just by sitting quietly after you eat one thing, right? Sit down and just eat a bowl of salad and see how your body feels and if your stomach kind of lurches and is like, “Ugh” you know? You start belching or you feel really sluggish or you’re super full and uncomfortable, well your body doesn’t like that.
So you can intuitively pick up on what really works for you and what doesn’t but this test is going to be fascinating. I will certainly check back in with everybody and let you know my results and I will tell you an update after that, how I’m feeling about just eating my power foods.
So anyway everybody, I just wanted to talk to you today about the idea of you know, getting that baseline of your health, finding out what really makes you hum. What is your kryptonite? What really just makes you feel sluggish and awful and learning what that is and staying away from it, right? Lock that up in a steel box and don’t go near that.
So all right, well, I hope everybody is healthy and happy and maybe you check out the Viome site and you take a look and you can say, “Wow, she’s crazy” or you can say, “Well, it looks kind of interesting. I might want to try that out.” But either way, just know that other people out there are searching to feel fantastic and this is just another way that it’s easy to do it because they send it to your house and this is not a commercial for Viome.
I actually am not thrilled about their non-family program, so this is actually what this is, is me sharing an experience of my life so that in case you have gone through it before or in case you are feeling awful and you think you may have some food allergies, this is a possible way for you to find out. There are others ways.
So this is just the tip of the iceberg. If you are going to research Viome, research a ton of other companies and figure out which one works for you or go to your naturopath and have allergy testing done there. So there is lots of ways for you to find this information out, go and check it out though because I say the more information, the better. It is fascinating out there, so go find something out.
All right everybody, have a great day.
Thank you again for tuning in. If you’ve missed any of the previous podcasts or just want to listen to some of them over and over again, which I hope you do, please go to our website, they’re all there for you and so easy to listen to from that platform, gwbw.com, GroWise Be Well, empowering you to live your best life.