Friends, it's my pleasure to introduce you to my friend, Colleen Fox. She has quite the story and is nothing short of inspiring at how she's chosen to take some of her darkest days health-wise and turn them into a way to help and encourage others. Colleen launched her site, Live Your Life Freely, in early 2017, and shares incredible allergen-free recipes, , more of her own story on living with Gastroparesis, and more. Colleen resides in San Antonio, TX with her husband, Nick, and five beautiful children.
LIVE YOUR LIFE FREELY
Guest Blogger Colleen Fox
When I was diagnosed with Gastroparesis (gp) in March of 2013, I had no clue what my life was about to become. Gastroparesis means delayed gastric emptying which results in nausea, vomiting, and extreme malnourishment; it’s a chronic illness and unfortunately there is no cure. After my diagnosis, I was sent home with a “what not to eat list” along with a few prescriptions. I continued to lose weight rapidly, could only tolerate 4 foods, and spent most of my time either laying on the bathroom floor or in bed taking massive amounts of medication.
I had multiple appointments with different specialists, hoping for some answers, and all I ended up with was several food allergies and a confirmation that there wasn’t much more they could do for me. I was so discouraged, but I was determined to find a way to be able to truly live again.
Nick, my knight in shining armor, stuck by my side and continued to encourage, love, and support me through the most difficult of times and is the driving force behind Live Your Life Freely. He has encouraged me to share what’s working in my life in hopes that it may work for someone else. Through trial and error, I’ve been able to eliminate 8 of my 9 prescriptions, replacing them with natural supplements. Creating Gastroparesis-friendly recipes, free from common allergens, has become a passion of mine, along with sharing different symptom management tools that have helped me in my fight with Gastroparesis.
Live Your Life Freely is so much more than a website; it’s a complete shift in perspective. Defining your new normal is key to allowing more freedom in your life! There was a time, at the beginning of my “GP Journey”, that I constantly found myself saying that I just wanted to be normal. It wasn’t until my husband stopped me and said, “You have to define what your new normal is, otherwise you will be completely miserable and constantly wishing you were something you aren’t.” So I did just that, and the freedom that has come from a simple activity is a blessing.
As of today, I am living life to the fullest with our 5 beautiful kids! I have learned to embrace whatever comes our way even if it’s not what we expected. We have the power to provide hope and encouragement to others and I couldn’t be more excited that God is using me to accomplish great things! My hope is that I can continue to encourage others to define their new normal, allowing them to live life freely!
You can find recipes, hope and encouragement, and my complete Gastroparesis journey here: liveyourlifefreely.com