I spent my entire life living as a rock star. That would be figuratively, not literally. I flew through most of my adult life as an Alaskan wilderness adventurer, global traveler, health care provider, backcountry hiker, commercial fisherman, endurance horse racer, power yoga practitioner and Latin dancer. All these fun-filled activities ran neck and neck along side an action-packed career in integrative health care and traditional Chinese medicine. Needless to say, I was happy, healthy and whole and was living life as large as I could possibly manifest.
Then came 2010-11. That was the year of my tsunami. I was 52 years old and had been living overseas for 10 years. It was a year of cascading personal stressors in my life and the rheostat of my energy slowly dialed down. So slowly, that I didn’t even perceive it was happening as I was so strong and so passionate about my life. And then one day I found myself struggling to avoid being a half-bubble above bed-ridden.
Net, net, net… The light went off and there were things wrong, notably wrong. Extreme fatigue, rampant insomnia, weight gain, constipation, hair falling out, anxiety and depression, bleeding gums, skin issues, brain fog, cognitive impairment, and lack of interest in doing the things I loved. I had exercise intolerance and was freezing-cold all the time. I had joint and spine pain, a pale and puffy face, blurry vision, shortness of breath and an insatiable appetite.
My standard mantra was either “I’ve got to sit down or better yet, I’ve got to lay down.” Walking up two flights of steps was a chore. Cognitive activities such as reading, typing or even problem solving were difficult due to my brain-based fatigue. I cut my workload in half and I never went outside because I was either too cold or too tired or both. I hardly slept. Need I say more? Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.
Being the science-geek and investigator that I am, I marched forward through the storm. Books, podcasts, blog posts, webinars and everything that I could find to educate myself. I did a national search for a functional medicine provider and on that trail, I found Dr. Flannery’s webinars and lectures. I listened to all of them and I was very impressed. He was a truly dynamic and enthusiastic speaker and above all, his deductive mind really knew the hard science behind true wellness. I knew that he would be a key part of helping me to regain my health.
I contacted his office, filled out the detailed health history forms and we worked together long-distance via Skype for many, many months. We covered all aspects of the diagnostic protocol from blood, urine and stool testing, identified food allergies and cross-reactivity’s, chemical sensitivities, viral loads, inflammatory marker’s, intestinal permeability disruption and autoimmune reactivity. I literally felt like I received a “PhD” in health and wellness after working together with Dr. Flannery as I learned so much about the body’s innate mechanisms.
After a thorough review, Dr. Flannery put me on targeted diet and supplement protocol that was based upon my unique biochemistry. We met every 3 months and adjusted my program based upon further testing. We wound down systemic inflammation, sealed the gut & the brain barriers, populated the micro-biome, dealt with viral loads and detoxified the liver. It was truly a collaborative systems approach and once I began my health journey with Dr. Flannery, I started feeling better week by week. It was very notable and very exciting, as I was regaining my life that I had lost…or at least had misplaced.
Dr. Flannery was extremely thorough and precise with his mapping and staging of my treatment plan to correct the numerous imbalances that had led to my autoimmune storm. Best of all, he is a true educator and compassionate wellness coach that saw the bigger picture of my path towards optimal health.
And so, here I am 8 years later doing absolutely everything that I love to do, the symptom list is gone, my blood work is the best it has ever been, and I have more energy and vibrant life force than ever. I continually recommend Dr. Flannery to all my friends and patients who are struggling with their unresolved health challenges.
Thank you Dr. Flannery for all your pearls of wisdom, your innate intellect and intuition and best of all your compassion and humor! You are the BEST!
Susan S., Anchorage, Alaska