It's 2.36 as I start to write this blog post. I've been awake since around 1.30am. I've been having nightmares. I went to bed with a headache, I knew I'd gotten a dose of another spray but I also knew I'd have to wait until Monday to get treated. That meant two days of agonising pain.
But tonight, I had nightmares and couldn't sleep. So I know what spray got me. I know what the culprit is, even if I don't know who gave me this..... It could have been you.
It is one of my favourites "Round Up". We all use it. We've all been told it's safe. What's that Tui ad? "Yeah right". Well, actually I don't use it anymore because I know the damage it does to me and many many more kiwis around the country.
You know that cough that you just can't shake? Feeling dizzy? Nauseous? The headache that you can't explain? It's probably a spray too. Perhaps not "Round Up". Maybe another like the 245T or 245D that my local golf club uses. Or maybe something like the products that promise you don't have to do any work, the one your neighbour uses, or the any number of horticultural sprays from up the harbour that float down from Hellensville and the likes, or even the spray you see the council using. "Yep, its perfectly safe, that's why I'm all covered up in this suit that protects me". You can hear another Tui ad huh?! "Yeah right!".
And like me I believed all the promises that it's not harmful. That it doesn't affect us. We're ok. "Yeah right"!
It has now been proven that Round up is dangerous. There are studies showing this. It was all hidden in the media about 2-3 months ago. But still we use it and other damaging chemicals that are supposedly safe.
For approx 6 years, I was diagnosed with having ME (Chronic Fatigue syndrome). What does that mean? Well for each person it's different. For me, it meant one day going to bed after a gym session and basically not getting up for 3 months. Yep. Seriously. I got up to take the kids to school, and pick them up again. That was around 8 years ago. On top of that, I couldn't do anything. Any class I taught, well that needed a weeks 'recovery' booked into my schedule to allow for the tiredness I felt after. And that doesn't include any kind of normality in my schedule. It was hell, actually that is an understatement (and yes, I hid it well, that's my job, to put on a good face, even when I was sick as a dog. My poor family dealt with the mess after).
As a last resort I went to this 'hippie' doctor. I met up with an old friend and a friend of hers. They suggested him. . . He treats things like ME I was told. Things that 'normal' doctors just blow over....like those lumps that had started to appear all over my body. "Just an allergic reaction to something. We can't treat it, we can't diagnose it. But that's what it 'probably' is". Things like ME that 'can't' be treated.
And I have to admit it didn't happen straight away. There were appointments (which continue each week now), but then I started to realise I wasn't so tired anymore. I was able to do things I hadn't done for a while. The lumps went away. I had days lump free, and then when they came back, they were smaller! I asked my family, have you noticed a change in me? The resounding answer was 'heck yeah'. And approx 1 year later I realised I was 'pretty healthy'.
Before I saw this miracle worker (yes, to me he is a miracle worker! And I don't use that term lightly), I was seeing my 'normal' doctor every month. Sometimes more than that. Pneumonia, recurring bronchitis, coughs that just would not go away. All on top of the chronic fatigue (for some reason I have a weakness in my lungs and skin that the sprays gravitate to, for others it will manifest in other areas in their body). I look back now and don't know how I did it. Seriously.
But now, guess when I see the 'normal' doctor? I DON'T. Since seeing Matt, I've seen the doctor once. That is in an 18 month period. I just haven't needed to. That flu? Yep, it was another spray masquerading as a 'real' illness. That cold? Runny nose? Same thing. And the cough.... we've already talked about that! None of it for me is real (sorry I lie, I did have one cold, but again it was treated by Matt and the length of it was shortened). . .It's all (ok, that's over dramatic and definitely emotionally charged, but pretty close to being true) induced by one spray or another.
Here we are in little ole New Zealand known throughout the world as a 'clean green' country. Yet when I travel overseas, I'm healthier than I am at home. This year, in Jan I went to the states for about a month. I was terrified of traveling overseas for so long and being away from my miracle worker doctor. But I needn't have worried. I was fine! Going to Aussie a few weeks ago. I got a little spray, but nothing major. Both times, I came home and was instantly sick again. After being treated, it took longer for me to be affected again, until my body just couldn't cope anymore and I end up being affected every day again.
And there is NOTHING I can do. I can't stop you using the spray you choose to keep weeds from your garden. And that's why I'm putting up this post. As a plea. As something I can do.
You see when I started to write this post I wasn't sleeping, had a headache close to a migraine. After working out from my symptoms what the likely spray was, I decided to treat it myself. I did and within 5 mins, the headache was gone. I was right. I'd been got with Round up.
And so I'm here to plead with you. To BEG you. To please please please stop using sprays that have chemicals in them.
I know! Believe me I know! It's the easy way, right? I mean what is one popular products catch phrase? We all want the easy option. Today's lives are too busy to have to do more. But unfortunately I don't get that luxury, my friend up the road who sees Matt too now after chatting with me, she doesn't either. Neither do our kids. And the hundreds (perhaps thousands???) of other people who see Matt on a regular basis. And the unlucky ones who get affected and think they are just sick. Cause that's the thing. We are ALL affected. It's just that some of our bodies are affected differently. Some can handle it better than others. But the reality is, that we are all affected. Just by varying strengths.
So here I am pleading with you to please check your sprays. See if they have a chemical in them? Are they natural, and if they claim to be, are they really? What does that number REALLY mean? That long word? And if it's dodgy, if you're not sure, then find out. And/or find an alternative. Google natural alternatives and then use them.
Here's another example of how it works.... Today (I guess yesterday now) my husband and I went for a walk. It was lovely. We needed something from the supermarket so instead of driving, we walked. Stopped by the building site, then carried on to the rental we currently live in. Not 5 mins from 'home', we walked past a man spraying. I covered my mouth with my jersey, then started to cry. I knew I'd be affected. I knew I was in for more pain. And I knew that I couldn't do anything about it. And I was right. Here I am at 3am typing on the computer instead of sleeping because a chemical mucked with my brain, gave me a headache, nightmares and wouldn't let me sleep.
Look, I'm no expert on this. All I know is that 18 months ago I was a mess. Now, all this time later, and all these treatments later, I'm not. It's that simple.
Yes, I still get affected, but not like I used to. And most importantly I have 'windows' where I can go without any consequences. It's incredible. Amazing. Literally unbelievable (I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't gone through what I have).
But I'm tired of being tired. I'm tired of being affected. I'm tired of taking homeopathic remedies to treat something that shouldn't be a problem because it's 'safe'.
And from my experience, over 1.5 years I can honestly say that what I'm being treated for (which is essentially chemical poisoning) has been true for me and has literally changed my life.
This, this blog post, is my truth. Sitting here with another few lumps, crazy itchiness, suffering a migraine like headache, sleepless and troubled by nightmares. Just one spray, on any other normal day.
So again, I plead with you this weekend, and all others, to please put away the chemical sprays. Please.