The Rushton family has been part of our team from the beginning! Whether supporting Keto Friends peer network or helping spread awareness, Xavier and his family remind us what families on the diet are looking for in their day to day life. We asked them to join our board in 2017 as official community partners and have been so thankful to have them as contributors to the foundation.
Below is their story!
By Rachelle Rushton
Wow! Where to start? Our journey has definitely had its ups and downs, but it has been great to see the changes the diet has made in our son. When we first started Xavier on the diet we felt so confused! Don’t get me wrong we have an AMAZING dietitian, but trying to remember to look at how many carbohydrates something has in it when you are not used to doing it is HARD!
We had so many fails, I don’t want to even try to count them. And the weight loss was a huge heart breaker. We had been told that it would happen until his body adjusted but wow, just wow. That is one thing I never want to have to see my child go through again. He was so skinny, tired and cold all the time, and just had no energy at all. Then…we got into a groove and it started to get a lot easier.
This type of diet, well for that matter epilepsy in general, takes a whole tribe of people and we have an amazing support system. Our families thought we were crazy at first but when they saw the change in him, they jumped in to help us in any way possible. We also learned to make charts, labels, and became expert meal preppers.
I cannot say it enough, but meal prepping is a life changer for us. We are a very active family and without preparation every Sunday we would be *extremely* late to everything. It also allows us to let Xavier contribute to his lunches and snacks. He is able to pick out what he wants to have, and with a picky kid this really helps. (Recently he has started portioning out his own foods! He is a pro with a scale!)
Epilepsy and the ketogenic diet have been real-life changers for us, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. Living with epilepsy and using the ketogenic diet as treatment is now just a part of life for us. We don’t have to think too much about what we can and cannot do with Xavier.
We have found tons of alternatives to some of our favorite foods so that Xavier always feels included. We even how our own little “cook book” with all the recipes that we have converted into keto friendly versions. This really helps when he needs to stay overnight with family, all they have to do is check out his book and whip up dinner.
There have been times when I think what are we doing, we need help, we can’t do this anymore! This is when we take a moment to breatheand remember that we have this, we are pros now! (Totally kidding but it is easier now). I hope a small glimpse into our crazy life can help inspire another family who is struggling with this to realize that it’s okay to ask for help. We all need it from time to time, but the struggle is worth seeing your child improve right in front of your eyes! It has been a long journey but we will always be right there by his side whenever he needs us and ensure that he has what he needs to be successful.
This is our story. How can we help you make yours just as great?