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Green12

Getting Pregnant With So Many Health Issues?

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Thought I'd add my thoughts.. I am a mom with two children whom I have passed on the genes that cretae some health issues. Having children i sa personal decision may people undertake wthout any thought whatsoever. Dealing with allergies or health issues makes us more aware of life and all that can happen.

When we first discussed having chidlren, I had one condition - Type 1 diabetes - no family history of it. The endocrinologist said at the time, the risk was minimal that I would pass anything on.

Turned out, he was wrong. I developed Hypothyroidism after birth of first baby, then pernicious anemia after second. The pregnancies themselves went very well with good glucose control etc. I felt fine.

Children developed diabetes/celiac (boy) and hypthyroidism/celiac (girl).

Would I do it again, knowing what I know now?

In a heartbeat.

These two children have the ability to take what life gives them and move on... my daughter with Aspergers showed how to sit still and watch the butterflies... my son became stronger emotionally because he found out he could deal with something big and still have loads of fun.

They have well developed emapthy and have been able to offer comfort to others because they know about challenges.

Other friends with perfect health gave birth to children with medical issues or developmental delay.

Its a roll fo the dice, no one can predict your life. Others have great healthy kids despite medical issues

If you do decide to have children - you will be more aware than most moms about diet, allergies and healthy living,. You will be sensitive to health changes and act quicker than most to have allergies or immune conditions investigated.

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Julie- i meant to respond to this post awhile ago. I am in the same boat as you. only older :P i realized that if i waited for everything to be "perfect' i'd lose the chance. i'm scared as heck, but I'm gonna give it a shot. It looks like it might be difficult- my hormones are a little out of whack but hopefully it will be OK.

I, myself, am adopted as is my sister and because we both have some "interesting" health issues in addition to my having celiac's we often joke that we were put up for adoption because our biological moms knew what they were in for!

So you pass on the gene? You have a child who is gluten-free, right? And an amazing person to help them understand what they need to do to stay healthy (you!). Look at flagbabyds (Molly on here). She's been gluten free for 14 years!

Of course, you could always adopt too. I'm very proud that I was adopted because I always say that it's the best thing that ever happened to me. My parents were/are incredible and I'm glad that whoever gave birth to me had the foresight to trust that someone else could take great care of me. Most of the time I forget I'm adopted and I'm always surprised when someone is surprised or seems to think it's "exotic". as far as I'm concerned, the parents who raised me are my parents.

Actually, i've always wanted to adopt in addition to having my own. For now, I'm going to try. Let's keep in touch!

uhm.. and spawning isn't exactly what I'd call it :P i haate to think of myself as spawned. makes me sound like the devil's child. or a frog. i don't think I'm either.

Hi Berneses,

Thanks for your reply. It is always helpful to know there are others in similar situations, dealing with similar challenges, sharing similar thoughts, concerns, fears, facing big decisions. There is comfort in knowing a source of support is out there. I also really appreciate your personal perspective on adoption. It sounds like you have a wonderful family!

I feel pressure too, like you mentioned, as to the time element involved. I am a little bit younger but I still feel like the door is closing and the window of opportunity is getting smaller and smaller and smaller as time passes. I feel so behind, my brother has had all the kids he is going to have and his family is set, my parents are getting older......I am so ready to try NOW, but I hesitate because I am not in a good place physically, health-wise. But at the same time I just want to LIVE and let whatever happens happen.

I wish you all the best Berneses with this, please keep me posted!!!

Would I do it again, knowing what I know now?

In a heartbeat.

These two children have the ability to take what life gives them and move on... my daughter with Aspergers showed how to sit still and watch the butterflies... my son became stronger emotionally because he found out he could deal with something big and still have loads of fun.

They have well developed emapthy and have been able to offer comfort to others because they know about challenges.

Other friends with perfect health gave birth to children with medical issues or developmental delay.

Its a roll fo the dice, no one can predict your life. Others have great healthy kids despite medical issues

If you do decide to have children - you will be more aware than most moms about diet, allergies and healthy living,. You will be sensitive to health changes and act quicker than most to have allergies or immune conditions investigated.

2kids4me, what you wrote here is beautiful- it made me tear up.

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Guest BERNESES

julie- I definitely know how you feel! please PM or email me anytime.

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JulieM

I have three children and it was my last that alerted me that something may be wrong. I have no symptoms of celiac and don't even know if I have it. I have active IgA antibodies according to enterolab and one each of the celiac and gluten sensitive/intolerant gene. My older two also have active IgA and no known symptoms. My oldest boy has mild malabsorption which surprised me. I'm assuming my baby, since he is the one that started all this will also be the same as far as intolerance. I am 39 and didn't have my first child until I was 33. Don't worry about your age. Take care of yourself and make sure you take a prenatal. Freeda makes a gluten free one although I'd have to look to see if it had any hidden msg. I have a sleeping baby on my lap right now so I can't check. Got to get both of us to bed, hopefully he'll go right back to sleep when I put him down.

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I haven't read all the posts here, but thought I would share my experience. I have three boys ages 2,4 and 7 years old. My first pregnancy I was working night shift as a nurse and was always exhausted. I remember also having major bloating during my nightshift. I could hardly breathe towards the morning. Never knew about celiac. Anyway, my oldest son had a birth defect with his skull bones. They were fused in the back at birth. It is called sagittal craniosynostosis. HE had to have cosmetic surgery to reshape his head or it would have been very funny looking his whole life. Very difficult for me to go through. Then after he was born I ate all the time, but never gained any weight. Had my second baby almost three years later and he is 100% healthy. Then 2 years later I have my 3rd baby. He has something called Neurofibromatosis1 probably due to some birthmarks he has on his body called cafe au lait spots. THis is his only symptom at this point, but it is a genetic disease. Sixty percent of cases are mild, so this is what we hope for him. On top of that he is my son with Celiac disease. This is how I found out that I had it too. He had classic symptoms and has been gluten free since he was 14 months old. Otherwise he is healthy and happy. Great little boy. No one knows he has anything and he is blond and bright blue eyes. No one would ever know anything was wrong with them. It has been challenging though having the diagnoses and stress over their health, but they are doing awesome now. My health has been the downside this year, but for now I feel on top of the world. Very happy about that.

I too want one more child possibly. Despite being gluten free, for some reason I still had some symptoms that would come and go and I couldn't seem to figure it all out for a year. I have been very up and down with my health, but doesn't affect me majorly. I still walk four miles almost everyday and work all day to take care of my kids. The worst was still having IBS-C and heartburn that didn't want to go away. I feel that I am getting my health back now, but I want to be healthy without any relapses for six months to a year before I get pregnant again. I don't want to be fighting a low grade depression, due to having health "issues" my whole pregnancy. My 3rd pregnancy was exhausting and towards the end and after I had him was when the celiac symptoms really became fullblown and I couldn't avoid figuring out what was going on.

I wish you luck. I think if you are gluten free for a year before getting pregnant that you shouldn't have anymore risk of having a child with a health problem as the general population. I do think if you are constantly struggling with your health it is more challenging to be the mom's we all want to be. At least this has been my experience. No one has the perfect life though and I think at some point all mom's have something to deal with.

You have to do what is best for you and eat as healthy as you can.

Take care,

Monica

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JulieM

I have three children and it was my last that alerted me that something may be wrong. I have no symptoms of celiac and don't even know if I have it. I have active IgA antibodies according to enterolab and one each of the celiac and gluten sensitive/intolerant gene. My older two also have active IgA and no known symptoms. My oldest boy has mild malabsorption which surprised me. I'm assuming my baby, since he is the one that started all this will also be the same as far as intolerance. I am 39 and didn't have my first child until I was 33. Don't worry about your age. Take care of yourself and make sure you take a prenatal. Freeda makes a gluten free one although I'd have to look to see if it had any hidden msg. I have a sleeping baby on my lap right now so I can't check. Got to get both of us to bed, hopefully he'll go right back to sleep when I put him down.

Andrea, I love your new picture! Your little munchkin is soooo adorable I just want to squeeze those little cheeks.

I would love to find some supplements that didn't have gluten, corn, and hidden MSG. I really feel like I need the vitamin/mineral support.

I'm going to be 34 in July. I try not to worry about age, women are having children later and later as time goes on, and maybe it just isn't my time just yet. I would like to get myself a little more stable with diet and symptomology so that is my plan for now.

Thanks you so much for your thoughts.

I haven't read all the posts here, but thought I would share my experience. I have three boys ages 2,4 and 7 years old. My first pregnancy I was working night shift as a nurse and was always exhausted. I remember also having major bloating during my nightshift. I could hardly breathe towards the morning. Never knew about celiac. Anyway, my oldest son had a birth defect with his skull bones. They were fused in the back at birth. It is called sagittal craniosynostosis. HE had to have cosmetic surgery to reshape his head or it would have been very funny looking his whole life. Very difficult for me to go through. Then after he was born I ate all the time, but never gained any weight. Had my second baby almost three years later and he is 100% healthy. Then 2 years later I have my 3rd baby. He has something called Neurofibromatosis1 probably due to some birthmarks he has on his body called cafe au lait spots. THis is his only symptom at this point, but it is a genetic disease. Sixty percent of cases are mild, so this is what we hope for him. On top of that he is my son with Celiac disease. This is how I found out that I had it too. He had classic symptoms and has been gluten free since he was 14 months old. Otherwise he is healthy and happy. Great little boy. No one knows he has anything and he is blond and bright blue eyes. No one would ever know anything was wrong with them. It has been challenging though having the diagnoses and stress over their health, but they are doing awesome now. My health has been the downside this year, but for now I feel on top of the world. Very happy about that.

I too want one more child possibly. Despite being gluten free, for some reason I still had some symptoms that would come and go and I couldn't seem to figure it all out for a year. I have been very up and down with my health, but doesn't affect me majorly. I still walk four miles almost everyday and work all day to take care of my kids. The worst was still having IBS-C and heartburn that didn't want to go away. I feel that I am getting my health back now, but I want to be healthy without any relapses for six months to a year before I get pregnant again. I don't want to be fighting a low grade depression, due to having health "issues" my whole pregnancy. My 3rd pregnancy was exhausting and towards the end and after I had him was when the celiac symptoms really became fullblown and I couldn't avoid figuring out what was going on.

I wish you luck. I think if you are gluten free for a year before getting pregnant that you shouldn't have anymore risk of having a child with a health problem as the general population. I do think if you are constantly struggling with your health it is more challenging to be the mom's we all want to be. At least this has been my experience. No one has the perfect life though and I think at some point all mom's have something to deal with.

You have to do what is best for you and eat as healthy as you can.

Take care,

Monica

key, thanks so much for sharing your experiences. What you say about struggling with our own health and the challenges that brings with the ability to be the best mom's we can be is so true, and it is one of my main concerns. Like I said to Andrea above, I would like to be a little more stable and right now I am just not. I realize there is not a 'best' time, there will always be something, and 'best health' is not my goal- just a little bit better.

I hope you have great success turning you health issues around :)

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I would love to find some supplements that didn't have gluten, corn, and hidden MSG. I really feel like I need the vitamin/mineral support.

Thanks about my little munchkin. He loves to smile! We went to a family campmeeting in Eastern Washington and one of the speakers is a doctor. I decided to ask him if he had heard of Celiac since it seems so many haven't. He said, "Yes, I've heard of Celiac Disease. I have it." He had wanted to get a picture of Seth because he was such a happy little guy and you can't help but smile back when he smiles at you, not to mention the dimples. We are going to send him a picture. It's kind of hard to be down with a little one that loves to smile. Who can stay sad.

I figured it would be easier to have you look through the list to see if you may be able to take them.

I suppose you could always call the manufacturer. Doesn't list a phone number but the address is

Freeda Vitamins Inc., 36 East 41st Street, NY, NY 10017

Freeda

Prenatal 1-a-day vitamin and mineral supplement

The perfect vitamin for those who are expecting! Formulated with an excellent balance of vitamins and minerals for the mother-to-be, Prenatal 1-A-Day is the ideal choice for the future vegan mother. Each 100-tablet bottle is $12.95

NOTE: Due to the needs of expectant mothers, it is recommended that additional calcium supplementation should also be taken.

Vitamin A (as Vitamin A Palmitate)………………….......……2000 iu (40% RDA)

Vitamin C (as Calcium Ascorbate)……………......……………100 mg (167% RDA)

Vitamin D (as Ergocalciferol)……………………........…………400 iu (100% RDA)

Vitamin E (as d-Alpha Tocopherol Acid Succinate)………......15 iu (50% RDA)

Thiamin (Vitamin B1 as Thiamin Hydrochloride)….......………2 mg (118% RDA)

Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)…………………………….........……….3 mg (150% RDA)

Niacin (as Niacinamide)…………………….......……………….20 mg (100% RDA)

Vitamin B6 (as Pyridoxine Hydrochloride)………......…………3 mg (120% RDA)

Folic Acid………………………………………..........………… 800 mcg (100% RDA)

Vitamin B12 (as Cyanocobalamin)………….....……………….10 mcg (125% RDA)

Biotin………………………………………....……………….......100 mcg (33% RDA)

Pantothenic Acid (as d-Calcium Pantothenate)……....……....10 mg (100% RDA)

Calcium (as Calcium Carbonate and Calcium Ascorbate)…...200 mg (15% RDA)

Iron (as Ferrous Fumarate)…………….....……………………...27 mg (150% RDA)

Zinc (as Zinc Citrate)…………………………......………………15 mg (100% RDA)

Copper (as Cupric Gluconate)………….......…………………...2 mg (100% RDA)

Manganese (as Manganese Gluconate)............2m mg (100% RDA)

Other ingredients: Cellulose, calcium stearate, silica.

No gluten, lactose, artificial color, artificial flavor, animal derivatives, sugar or starch, gelatin, yeast.

Uncoated.

Take one a day preferably with food and liquid.

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Thanks about my little munchkin. He loves to smile! We went to a family campmeeting in Eastern Washington and one of the speakers is a doctor. I decided to ask him if he had heard of Celiac since it seems so many haven't. He said, "Yes, I've heard of Celiac Disease. I have it." He had wanted to get a picture of Seth because he was such a happy little guy and you can't help but smile back when he smiles at you, not to mention the dimples. We are going to send him a picture. It's kind of hard to be down with a little one that loves to smile. Who can stay sad.

I figured it would be easier to have you look through the list to see if you may be able to take them.

I suppose you could always call the manufacturer. Doesn't list a phone number but the address is

Freeda Vitamins Inc., 36 East 41st Street, NY, NY 10017

Freeda

Prenatal 1-a-day vitamin and mineral supplement

The perfect vitamin for those who are expecting! Formulated with an excellent balance of vitamins and minerals for the mother-to-be, Prenatal 1-A-Day is the ideal choice for the future vegan mother. Each 100-tablet bottle is $12.95

NOTE: Due to the needs of expectant mothers, it is recommended that additional calcium supplementation should also be taken.

Vitamin A (as Vitamin A Palmitate)………………….......……2000 iu (40% RDA)

Vitamin C (as Calcium Ascorbate)……………......……………100 mg (167% RDA)

Vitamin D (as Ergocalciferol)……………………........…………400 iu (100% RDA)

Vitamin E (as d-Alpha Tocopherol Acid Succinate)………......15 iu (50% RDA)

Thiamin (Vitamin B1 as Thiamin Hydrochloride)….......………2 mg (118% RDA)

Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)…………………………….........……….3 mg (150% RDA)

Niacin (as Niacinamide)…………………….......……………….20 mg (100% RDA)

Vitamin B6 (as Pyridoxine Hydrochloride)………......…………3 mg (120% RDA)

Folic Acid………………………………………..........………… 800 mcg (100% RDA)

Vitamin B12 (as Cyanocobalamin)………….....……………….10 mcg (125% RDA)

Biotin………………………………………....……………….......100 mcg (33% RDA)

Pantothenic Acid (as d-Calcium Pantothenate)……....……....10 mg (100% RDA)

Calcium (as Calcium Carbonate and Calcium Ascorbate)…...200 mg (15% RDA)

Iron (as Ferrous Fumarate)…………….....……………………...27 mg (150% RDA)

Zinc (as Zinc Citrate)…………………………......………………15 mg (100% RDA)

Copper (as Cupric Gluconate)………….......…………………...2 mg (100% RDA)

Manganese (as Manganese Gluconate)............2m mg (100% RDA)

Other ingredients: Cellulose, calcium stearate, silica.

No gluten, lactose, artificial color, artificial flavor, animal derivatives, sugar or starch, gelatin, yeast.

Uncoated.

Take one a day preferably with food and liquid.

Seth is a darling name, and his smile is absolutely precious- LOVE the dimples!!

Thanks for posting these ingredients. It's that darn cellulose, and I think clacium stearate is suspect as well for MSG.

Maybe I should look into liquid vitamins?

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I gotta disagree with this one. If you've grown up with a parent with a chronic illness, you know it will affect your kid's quality of life as well. At an early age they have to learn that their mom can't do what others can. With celiac it's simple stuff like choosing a funky tasting birthday cake or leaving mom out, but whith thyroid problems it's hard for kids to understand that you're too tired to do something, instead of just using it as an excuse because you don't want to. The worst part of my childhood was when my dad made me sell a dog because my mother thought her arthritis was coming back. I just was never as close to them after that. My parents never understood why I was so serious as a child, but that's because I was always having to deal with my mother's limitations and wondering when I'd be the same way.

And if that's not bad enough, I can guarantee you that the kid will be wondering when this will all happen to them. I've always known I would have autoimmune problems, it was just a question of what and when. I'd never wish that on anyone. I've never made any life plans beyond 40 or been in a serious relationship because I wouldn't want to dump this poop on anyone. After seeing how my grandmother died, when I get to a certain point it's a long fast ride off of a steep cliff for me. I'd rather be dead than bedridden.

Well. I have to say I disagree with this. My mother had chronic illness which severely limited her activities, but it didn't lead to me having a miserable childhood. On the contrary, I had both more responsibility and more freedom than most of my friends and felt priviledged as a result. My brother also had chronic illness, and we had to give away our dog as a result of his allergies, but I can't say I resented it. My daughter & Mother were diagnosed with celiac about the same time - I found out I had it when I ate my daughter's diet and all the problems I'd had over many years suddenly cleared up. Does she resent it? Not that she's ever said. We consult with each other and comiserate, but if any thing it is a shared thing that brings us together. Would she have been better off not being born? No way. She is a smart independent happy woman.

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I'll add my story. I was very unhealthy during pregnancy. I had terrible shakes, developed a noticable heart murmor that sped up my heart rate at rest with random spurts. I felt like I was having heart attack symptoms quite often. I was always out of breath and very shakey/dizzy and anemic.

BUT i was eating gluten and dairy (two big Nos for me) and I wasn't getting much meat. I ate too much mercury containing albacore and not enough protein in general.

I would say that if you are going to get pregnant, concentrate on making sure you are eating a healthy whole foods diet with little to no processed foods. Pamper your body and your babies with healthy meals each day. I would recommend a Bradley Instructor to help you organize your food intake. It would have made such a difference for me, so I can see first hand how it effects the body.

I nursed both of my children and that was also hard on me. I got Mastitis again and again and again and...well you get the idea. It was difficult and my babies got diarrhea, allergey rings, rashes....My first child has terrible gut problems that took us 4.5 years to overcome. My second child also had many intollerances, but we picked up on in much quicker and nipped it in the bud at age two.

My advice would be to eat a healthy low allergen diet while nursing (shoudl you choose to nurse). Your baby can react to foods through breastmilk. Sadly, the medical community was no help with this and it took us so long to heal my baby girl. :(

Had I known then what I know now....

What the nursing mama eats is VERY important.

Next thing to be concerned about is that you don't introduce gluten or high allergen foods in that first year. If you are passing anything alone, genetically speaking, you don't need to tax your little one's system. Waiting until they are 2 years old (or older) would be a WISE choice for introducing gluten and or dairy soy.

And vaccines....if your child does have a gentic disposition for immune disorder, then your child will be at higher risk for Vaccine reactions. The doctors will want to start vaccines the day the child is born with HepB vaccine. They will not likely know if your child has an autoimmune disorder before they begin vaccinating. I would recommend breastfeeding your baby (then your baby has certain immunity from you through breastmilk) and waiting a bit to start vaccines, and then doing them one at a time instead of assulting the system with 9-12 different vaccines at once, which is what they do here.

That may sound like a lot of worrying or overkill, but I would have been blessed to have that simple information 5+ years ago, instead of the terrible medical advice I received in place.

Good luck to you!

Blessings,

Laura

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Guest imsohungry

Hello Julie! This is Julie :lol: You can call me Jules to avoid confusion. ;)

I know how hard these issues are to debate...I did years of a "debate team" match in my own mind, weighing the pros and cons of having multiple illnesses and giving birth to a child.

I recently gave birth to a beautiful baby boy (see my post!) :wub:

However, I know there are no garantees in life. He may end up with my epilepsy or multiple autoimmune problems, or my husband's family's health problems...BUT...he could end up with problems that come from a freak genetic mutation...OR...imagine, he could be PERFECTLY HEALTHY! ;) This is finally what I told myself...actually, I went to see a genetic counselor, and she told me that. B)

Personally, I take life day by day. I make long term goals and have long term dreams...in my signature you see the statement: "I will never give up on my dreams; I will simply modify my path for reaching them." I wrote that myself...it is kind of my rule of life. If you decide to have (or adopt) a child, there will be unexpected turns and twists in your path along the way, but if you think about it, those twists and turns make life interesting and challenging. You and your child can still reach your dreams for happiness (even with illness), you may simply have to modify how you get there. ;)

O.K....enough psychobabble...but honestly, that is how I feel. Even with over 3000 seizures, constant hospital admissions, and other very icky health stuff, I have managed to live a good life, graduate with my masters degree, marry a wonderful man, and have a beautiful baby boy. I plan to encourage my son to pursue life to its fullest...whatever that may be for him. This is all that any of us can do in life.

My blessings and prayers go out to you as you make your decision. :)

-Julie

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Hello Julie! This is Julie :lol: You can call me Jules to avoid confusion. ;)

I know how hard these issues are to debate...I did years of a "debate team" match in my own mind, weighing the pros and cons of having multiple illnesses and giving birth to a child.

I recently gave birth to a beautiful baby boy (see my post!) :wub:

However, I know there are no garantees in life. He may end up with my epilepsy or multiple autoimmune problems, or my husband's family's health problems...BUT...he could end up with problems that come from a freak genetic mutation...OR...imagine, he could be PERFECTLY HEALTHY! ;) This is finally what I told myself...actually, I went to see a genetic counselor, and she told me that. B)

Personally, I take life day by day. I make long term goals and have long term dreams...in my signature you see the statement: "I will never give up on my dreams; I will simply modify my path for reaching them." I wrote that myself...it is kind of my rule of life. If you decide to have (or adopt) a child, there will be unexpected turns and twists in your path along the way, but if you think about it, those twists and turns make life interesting and challenging. You and your child can still reach your dreams for happiness (even with illness), you may simply have to modify how you get there. ;)

O.K....enough psychobabble...but honestly, that is how I feel. Even with over 3000 seizures, constant hospital admissions, and other very icky health stuff, I have managed to live a good life, graduate with my masters degree, marry a wonderful man, and have a beautiful baby boy. I plan to encourage my son to pursue life to its fullest...whatever that may be for him. This is all that any of us can do in life.

My blessings and prayers go out to you as you make your decision. :)

-Julie

Sleepingbean thanks for sharing your experiences, and advice and suggestions, very helpful not just to me but anyone weighing their options about having a baby while sick with an auto-immune illness :) I would like to have as much info as I can, arm myself with the facts, do you have any book suggestions or websites of organizations that relate to your post?

And thanks to you Jules, (I'm a Jules at times too, more confusion, but I spell it Jewels :lol::lol: ), for your prayers and blessings, and very honest and heartfelt post. It means a lot. Everyone here has been so supportive and helpful in pointing out that the bottom line is, like you say, we all have to just pursue life to the fullest and whatever is meant to be will be, sick or not. I truly believe that.

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