Sunday, July 13, 2008

Six Months: The Second

Quinn has a sensitivity to dairy. Lucas had it for a short while as well when he was her age but it wasn't as dramatic. So what all of this really means is that we haven't been eating or drinking anything that has cowmilk in it. We've substituted goat milk for some of our needs, such as cheese, and other types of milk, soy or hemp or almond, for our liquid necessity. It's worked out well for the most part and the adjustment has gone over smoothly, cheese being the only thing that I greatly miss and since I no longer eat burritos every day for my own personal health, dairy has been noticeably absent in all of our lives. We've also cut out alcohol for about a month because Xtimu is currently on a moratorium. I've had a few beers here and there but otherwise have remained sober.

The strangest thing happened. On the few occasions that I have cheese now, I immediately notice how much it affects me. My sinuses get clogged with the vestiges of phlegm. For most of my life, I've woken with this problem, hacking up in the morning and clearing out my nostrils before I can even get the day started. When I met Xtimu, she told me about the problems that she and her family had with allergies. I thought to myself, Oh that must be terrible, since I've never had to deal with allergies...or so I thought. Suddenly I have this feeling that I've always been allergic to cowmilk!

Then I began to think about it. Lucas had an issue with it when he was breastfeeding. Once he reached a certain age, we began to make blends for him with cowmilk in them and for the longest time he was passing really mushy bowel movements. So we decided to cut it out of his diet as well and now he has perfectly formed poop. He hardly has to wipe!

And now Quinn has a problem. She gets really congested...I mean REALLY congested. She also gets a very noticeable red mark around her nose. I asked Xtimu what she thought and it grew into this long discussion about the health benefits of cowmilk. Is it truly something that we should be putting in our bodies? We've been told throughout our lives that it's an essential part of the food pyramid and that we need our dairy every day. But who invented the food pyramid? Was it guided by corporate interests like everything else in our society or is it actually beneficial?

I don't know? The more that I think about it, the more I become convinced that human beings weren't designed to drink cowmilk. Maybe it's one of the root allergy problems that have affected humanity since we domesticated cows. Just because it's easy to obtain, doesn't necessarily mean that we should obtain it. Ultimately, what I have noticed is that the more that I regard my children and their dietary issues and habits and desires, the more I learn about myself.

In these past few months we've developed a keen awareness on some of the things that aren't really vital needs for us. We're learning about the activities that we truly want to embrace. It's a profound awakening that is continuing to grow in our family dynamic. I think that one of the main reasons for this is due to our roles as parents. The simple act of raising children has opened our eyes to renewed purpose, both in the ways and needs of our children and in our own personal desires. This is the great gift of parenthood and the one aspect that is so difficult for those who are not parents to understand. It's a perception that's enlightened by the presence of these divine kids.

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