By Becky Plotner

The doctor diagnosed me with my first ulcer at the age of 16.
Bloody, liquid diarrhea started when I was 18.
My mother had always been sick and since I didn’t want that lot, I ignored any and all issues
and only talked about how healthy I was, until the situation could no longer be avoided.
Shortly after every semester at college started, I got sick. I had some sort of bug or virus at
least four times a year. With each one, recovery took longer and longer.
Growing up on antibiotics, yeast grew until it was rampant. Continued use of antibiotics only
fueled the fury.

For several years, I struggled with yeast infections on and off, but the escalation of symptoms,
following a traumatic life event, was unreal. Chronic yeast infections turned into severe
monthly changes. My menstruation cycle turned into a show of pillows of blood with each
cycle which lasted longer and longer until the cycle filled almost the whole month. The yeast
escalated, however, tests returned negative. The doctors were stumped. I went from doctor to
doctor, seeing if someone could determine what was wrong. They made me feel like I was
crazy as they continually told me they couldn’t find anything.

Finally, one doctor decided to do a D&C, endometrial ablation and biopsy. They found early
stage cancer and removed my uterus, hysterectomy at the age of 32, with the cancer
common in 73-year-old women. Every pain killer and inflammation reducer caused issues. I
encountered almost all of the side effects of each medicine.
We ate clean, healthy food including lots of vegetables and meats, sweets a rare treat, no
sodas, no alcohol. We even ground our own wheat and ate the bread within 48 hours.
Still, the yeast continued to escalate. I remember the day it exponentially exploded, we had
eaten a lot of watermelon poolside.

The doctor put me on Diflucan, seven days in a row, four days off, then repeat, for two
months. Every time I filled the prescription with the pharmacist, he called the doctor asking if
the script was a mistake. After the initial first three days, it helped, but then the symptoms
spiraled downhill. Desperate, I began making yogurt at home, not knowing home brewed
yogurt was better, but doing it because it was less expensive. For a month all I ate was
yogurt, a yogurt fast. Then the next month all I ate was home brewed milk kefir, a kefir fast.
These were desperate times.
The yeast slowly subsided but, as the next five years unfolded, other issues arose, one after
the other.

POTS symptoms, Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, advanced to where I passed
out just by standing up. Foot fungus and toenail fungus became a consistent battle with
lotions and oils. IBS ruled my life, to the point that if I ate certain foods, my stomach blew up
as if I was 6 months pregnant and I couldn’t even have a shirt or blanket resting on my skin. I
had every symptom of ulcerative colitis. Reactions to medicines escalated, brain fog
developed, stomach acid issues got worse and worse, the tinnitus, ringing in my ears from
fluoroquinolone antibiotics as a child, grew so loud and persistent it caused me to hit and rub
my ears even though it didn’t help. Carpal tunnel was present daily and joint pain grew so bad

I was told I had Fibromyalgia. Then I was diagnosed with SIBO, Small Intestinal Bacteria
Overgrowth, then Stage 2 Spinal Degeneration. Environmental and food allergies grew to
over 50 items.
Stomach acid issues grew so intolerable that there was chronic pain in the esophagus and
throat.

Shortly thereafter, an amalgam filling was removed incorrectly to the point that I swallowed
several pieces of amalgam. My health problems got worse. Immediately thereafter, four more
amalgam fillings were removed properly.

The heavy metal poisoning was profound. I couldn’t think clearly. I would stop talking in the
middle of my sentence. My kids would ask me a question and I would begin to answer them
and just stop talking in the middle of the answer. Not only could I not remember what I was
talking about, I couldn’t even remember that I was talking at all. My kids just laughed at me.
When I read aloud the words that came out of my mouth were not the words I read on the
page. I couldn’t remember the names of simple, every day objects. My daily life functioned on
lists because I couldn’t remember anything. As if all that wasn’t enough, I quickly gained 40
pounds.
At that time, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease which quickly turned into
hypothyroidism.

Testing showed I was in Stage Four Adrenal Fatigue. The test levels were so low that when
the doctor came in the room, he didn’t even look at me, he went straight to my husband and
asked, “What are you doing to your wife? Are you beating her? Did you lose your job? What
are you doing to her?”
I was mortified.

The fatigue progressed from needing to lay down after exercising to not getting out of bed for
three days after exercising. Gradually, I didn’t get out of bed at all. My decisions for the day
were, do I clean up the kitchen or do I make dinner? I didn’t have what it took to do both.
During this time I was bit by ticks while hiking four different times and developed Lyme
Disease.
Depression settled in, my hair fell out by the fistful, weight stuck to me like glue, eczema
developed in my scalp, tops of the feet and inside the ears, my hair turned deeply gray,
constipation was normal and emotions were all over the map while life became doing only
was imperative.

We had been on Full GAPS for roughly 3 years at the time so I pressed into GAPS intro,
focusing on stage 2 for a year. After roughly four months I was functional and continued to
listen to what my body was saying and answering its requests.
I went back to school to help others since I knew I couldn’t be the only one.
It’s been years now and the only issues that still remains are addressing PCOS and being
careful to not stress the adrenals too hard, but I function with a demanding work schedule.
GAPS is so hard that I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, but coming from where I was, I don’t think
anything else would have fixed my situation.
Through proper support, the body can heal itself.