My Major Roadblock

by Dave Jackson

Dave in NaplesImagine your feet firmly planted in the chocks, you’re so filled with anticipation you almost want to jump the cracking of the starter’s gun. You feel awesome and can’t wait any longer. The gun signals your start and you’re off.

Two weeks ago that was my position. But Friday I was hit head on with my biggest wall – my health. I’ve never shared my health with you, and with reason. I want the site to be more about helping you. And yet, maybe by telling my story you can benefit. So here we go.

I was born in Michigan, but soon moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area of Texas as my parents were called into the ministry. They asked their pastor where they should go to Bible school, and Texas was the answer. At around 11, my parents felt called to the the jungles of the Amazon in Brazil. As a kid, you can imagine, I was in paradise. I felt like Tarzan and Indiana Jones all rolled into one.

Most people ask about the food. And the food there was pretty good. Fresh everything. So I can’t attribute any health challenges to living in the jungle. I graduated from high school there full of life and dreams.

Back in Texas, where I ended up, I did need some dental work done. Not sure if this was because of the fact we grew up eating hard candy in the ’60’s, but I had a mouthful of trouble.

The dentist said he couldn’t help me that day. Too much swelling. He told me to take this new antibiotic out on the market that I would have wonderful results. Little did I know that small prescription would change my life forever.

I did take the prescription, but had a horrible reaction to it. I broke out all over in a rash that painfully itched.

So, I did like most anyone else would and headed to my General Practice doctor and asked for him to take a look at it. Naturally, and this is important to follow, he did not look too much to the cause but to the effect. His prescription (to counteract the first one) was Prednisone.

The Prednisone, if you’re not familiar with it, is a form of cortisone and it did make the rash disappear. But as soon as I ran out of the medicine, the rash came back! I went back to my doctor and he gave up… and sent me to a dermatologist. A biopsy later, I was diagnosed with Dermatitis Herpetiformis.

Dermatitis Herpetiformis is sorta like it sounds. Has to do with the dermis – layer of the skin, and the effect does look a lot like herpes. Thinking back, I never thought – great, I have herpes – I just wanted to find a cure. This isn’t herpes. What it is, is a form of Celiac. I asked the dermatologist, OK…what now? And he had two answers.

First, I could take Dapsone, or… simply stop eating anything that has wheat gluten in it.

What? Did I hear that right? No more wheat in my diet? That’s right – eliminate everything and the painful blisters that had made their way around my knuckles and joints would be gone.

You know, at this stage in my life, I wasn’t totally on board with healthy foods and living. I admit, I loved the high fructose corn syrup, fat filled foods. So I accepted the dapsone prescription, and went on my way – still not knowing what was happening in this stage of my life. I was simply following doctor’s orders.

In my next update, I’ll tell you the single choice I made that added years to my life, and my advice to anyone with allergies – a simple tip that could get your life back.

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