Courage is Not the Absence of Fear

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela

We all have fears. Some small, some big, some of us are afraid of everything, and some of us deny we have an ounce of fear in us. But the truth is, we all have fears.

I tend to fall into the latter category. I don’t deny that I have fears, but I tend to pretend they’re not there and stuff them down. I “face” my fears by avoiding them, pretending they don’t exist, or smiling my way around them. But that doesn’t make them disappear. Deep down they grow until they can’t be ignored anymore.

One of my fears is this blog. I laugh as I write that, because it seems strange even to me. When I first started up my Healthy Home Body website (and business) in 2014, I was posting away: recipes, tips, sharing my life, sharing our autism recovery story … any and everything, putting it all out there to try to help anyone that I could. Honestly, recipes are pretty safe. Our story is a bit scarier to share, as I tend to be guarded with our private life a bit (any other introverts out there?) but I still did it without too much worry.

And then 2016 hit, and things changed a lot here.

I became really, really sick, and initially I didn’t know why. I just knew that my brain wasn’t working anymore, so not only did I not have the energy to post here anymore, I also didn’t have the ability (or brain energy) to think up the words to write down. My brain needed healing, and to do so, it pretty much needed to rest completely.

Since that time, I have posted very sporadically, but it isn’t because I don’t want to. I really, really want to, but I also know I need to tell my story. I need to share what has been going on in my life for the last couple years, and I wasn’t ready to share that yet because it scared me. Maybe because it was admitting that I had a problem. Maybe it’s because I’m still not sure about the outcome. The good news is, I’m ready to face it and ready to share it, and my brain on most days is cooperating with me enough now that I can do both!

So, to start, I need to share very briefly a summary of the last couple of years, and what this means for this blog, upcoming posts, and the direction that it will take:

First, what’s up with our diet (as this has been a huge part of this blog): right now, we currently eat a mostly Paleo-type diet. We are still focusing on gut healing (as this should be a continuous part of everyone’s life; our modern lifestyle – including the air we breathe and the rainwater that falls on our plants – necessitates that we are continually working on building up our digestive health) and a big part of this is fermented foods, whole foods, and real foods. We garden, we have a CSA this summer, and we get produce from local farmers. I will be sharing more recipes and tips over the coming months, focused on both Paleo and GAPS diet-friendly meals and snacks. (I will also be addressing the recent vegan fad in an upcoming post)

Next, what’s up with my kids, as they’ve been a part of this blog too: I’m happy to say that they are doing very well! They continue to eat a huge variety of foods, and the gut healing that we found on the GAPS Diet has continued to serve them well. We are starting to enter those “pre-teen” years, and as any mom of boys can tell you, food does not last very long in the fridge these days. 😉 My son who was diagnosed with autism at the age of 2 ½ continues to make progress, and we continue to learn more about the pieces that contribute to his autism, which leads me to the next part of our story.

My health: I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease early in 2017 after several months of severe illness. It turns out that I likely was bit by a tick sometime in 2006, and in the following years I exhibited symptoms of illness, but they weren’t severe enough to stop me. The fact that I was living on adrenaline alone (well, and coffee) and never stopped may have helped me in those early years, as nothing had the chance to catch me, but unfortunately it also led me to being unaware of my illness and passing on Lyme to both of my boys during my pregnancies. This is likely a big factor that led to my oldest son developing autism. Lyme disease in children commonly exhibits with neurological symptoms and many of these children will go on to be diagnosed with autism. This was something I wasn’t fully aware of initially and something that I continue to learn more about (and will share more research on in the coming months!)

Besides Lyme, I was also diagnosed with several co-infections (co-infections are diseases that can also be passed by the tick during the same bite, or they are diseases that may have been lying dormant in your body but which often work along with Lyme to wreak havoc on you). These co-infections, which for me included babesia, Epstein Barr virus, mycoplasma, HHV6, and protomyxzoa, contributed to my Lyme symptoms, and initially, I was very very ill. And yet as a nurse, I realized that my symptoms were so very odd (and there were so many of them) that I felt crazy. And I didn’t know where to go where they wouldn’t think I was crazy. (I went once to my primary care clinic to appease my husband who was rightly worried about me, and I left there with a diagnosis of IBS and “anxiety” — a.k.a. “crazy”. At least I was able to tell my husband, “I told you so.”)

By the time I found a doctor who was what they call “Lyme Literate”, she had found that Lyme and the other infections had weakened my adrenals, thyroid, liver, kidneys, stomach, colon, and brain. Thankfully, when I started to see her in April of 2017, I started to make progress in a more positive direction.

In the coming months, besides talking about general tips to improve your health and our daily routine for wellness, I will be sharing my Lyme story and the protocol that is helping me to regain health. I will be talking more about autism, about seizures (which both of my boys are experiencing/have experienced), about gut healing, about essential oils and herbs, and how to incorporate natural living into your daily routine, whether you are currently battling illness or not. We’ll talk more about how to toss toxins from your home (and why that’s important) and why you should ALWAYS do your research before you just blindly accept something – even something that I post here!

I look forward to continuing this journey that we started four years ago, as I wish for all of us to be able to find ways to function at our best!




Best wishes to you and your family,
~ Alicia


P.S. As my brain tends to work better in shorter sessions, I have been able to keep up with some posts on social media better than my blog here. I would love to have you come and follow along via the following pages:
Instagram: @healthy.home.body
Facebook Business Page: Healthy Home Body LLC
Facebook Group: Healthy Home Body Support Group
Facebook Essential Oil Group: Essentially Sweet Thyme

3 Replies to “Courage is Not the Absence of Fear”

  1. I’m glad you found some answers! I had wondered what happened to you. I’m actually waiting the results of blood test right now, as I’ve had a fever, fatigue and weight loss since the last week of June. I’m worried that I was bitten by something while working in the yard. We’ll see. I’m glad you’re still here with us.


  2. I just want to say that the courage you show in the face of everything you and your family has been through shines so brilliantly through any fear you may have. And the fact that you are sharing your experiences and knowledge with us the readers is just wonderful as we can hopefully help our family’s too. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Keep up the great work! 🙂


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