Summer Setbacks

I like to think that setbacks are the ultimate ninjas in life. They attack when least expected, karate chop all plans to pieces, and then vanish into the depths of one's memory.

Honestly, I thought all the setbacks of my summer were checked off the list. Two weeks had past since my wisdom teeth removal and, in terms of my goal to gain weight, my mouth was full more often than empty (homemade mug cakes, pizza and bread, anyone?).

There's been lots of these!
And then I woke up yesterday morning with one chipmunk cheek and a ticked off chasm where my right wisdom tooth used to be. And I stepped on the scale and saw the arrow point to 85 lbs.

When I decided to get my wisdom teeth removed this summer, more than surgical tools filled my nightmares. My main worry? Complications - from celiac disease or my usual luck - that would zap even more pounds. Thanks to celiac disease, I already look like a "baby bird," as my sister lovingly describes me, and I can't lose any more feathers. So, I did everything possible to keep my mouth happy. Salt rinses, water flushes, avoiding seeds and applying heat. And yet, despite every precaution, it happened. An infection. Exactly what we prayed to avoid.

And so I'm back to this...
Sometimes, setbacks aren't fair. They strike the innocent, the unworthy, and, as I sit at my computer desk, my stomach burning with acid and nausea because of the antibiotics now shooting through my veins, I can't help but wince. I can't help but cry, not because I'm upset, but because I'm mad that, once again, my body has let me down.

I try so hard to nourish it. I fill my smoothies with protein powder, my quinoa flakes with hemp and chia seeds and my belly with a night snack every evening before bed. Even as my appetite has doubled and my meal numbers have exploded, the scale throws taunts my way. Maybe I rebooted my metabolism. Maybe I lost my minute sinews of muscle during my sedentary days after wisdom teeth surgery.

A pretty bowl of quinoa flakes! Grow, baby, grow!
The why - why I'm so skinny, why an infection is partying in my mouth, why I now feel like a glutened scarecrow lit on fire by the sun - doesn't matter. My yearlong journey with celiac, from the liquid diet to my hospitalization, has taught me that. What matters is how I react to these setbacks, not why they were sent my way.

Instead of focusing on the throbbing in my mouth and stomach, my eyes are on the future. Right now, I have a week of antibiotics scheduled. A week of nausea and stomach acid climbing up my throat. Right now, I'm 5'3" and 85 lbs. Weeks of my see-food diet (I see food and I eat it!) have done nothing but rev my appetite.

This is just the beginning!
But I won't live in "right now" forever. I have the entire summer of car trips, family fun and adventures with friends to look forward to. Hopefully, these antibiotics will kill my infection (besides just my stomach), and I'll be flashing my non-swollen smile in a few weeks time. Hopefully, there aren't any more surgical tools in my mouth's future. And, hopefully, my food will soon end up in more places than my hollow leg.

But even if they don't, I still have something. Hope. And even a ninja can't steal that away from me.

Did you have wisdom teeth surgery complications? What setbacks have you suffered? Comment below!


  1. antibiotics are the worst if you have GI problems to begin with. I had to do a 2 week course of antibiotics not too long ago and they had me take omeprazole (prilosec) with them...but it didn't help. I felt nauseous all day for the first week and had indigestion the whole time. To not loose ground when I'm feeling sick I eat peanut butter and anything with a lot of sugar (gf candy even). My GI doc said to not worry so much about eating nutritiously when that happens and that it is more important to get the calories in and worry about the other stuff after i'm feeling better and am able to eat more. It has helped me go from my lowest of 82 lbs up to 117 today :)

    1. Yep antibiotics definitely stink! Luckily (starting yesterday), my doctor took me off them, so now I'm just waiting for the side effects to fade away. Peanut butter sounds likke a brilliant idea! And I appreciate the advice on focusing more on calories than quality - definitely a challenge at times. Congrats on your weight gain! (society faints) And thanks for the comment!

  2. Casey, I am SO sorry about your setbacks, you're so sweet and positive and such a ray of light, it's just not fair, BUT as you said, we can't look at set backs that way, but rather change our perspective about them! Good idea looking to the future, I already commented on a prior post, but I had major complications post wisdom tooth surgery (bit off a part of my tongue, couldn't eat real food for two weeks almost) BUT ANYWAY I have some suggestions for the acid:
    1. apple cider vinegar (organic kind, like braggs, is a natural cure for heart burn) it sounds counterintuitive, BUT adding acid, can help balance out the overproduction
    2. to gain weight, I agree a bit with what Andrea said, trying to incorporate more "fatty" foods that have serious bulk, or simple carbs (white rice, white pastas, etc.)
    3. aloe vera juice - GREAT for naseua and indigestion :)


    1. Thank you so much for the compliments and comment! That sounds horrible too - wisdom teeth are just bad all the way around, I think! Thanks for the tips and I'm definitely going to attack some simple carbs. And aloe vera juice - how interesting! I will definitely try it out! Lots of <3 back at ya! :)

  3. oh no friend. make sure you get those probiotics in if you are on antibiotics!

    1. thanks for the comment and advice! yep, we're pumping probiotics like crazy! :)


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