Casual Friday: Has My Health Improved Since the Mold was removed?

June 12, 2020  —  Written by Julia 

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SOURCES: Art | Bench | Rug | Jeans | Sandals | Tee

I’m continually getting the same question in my inbox that makes me feel so cared for —How are you feeling now that the mold is gone?  First, wow, thank you so much for the concern. If you are just now catching up, a couple months ago, our contractors found extensive black mold covering 70% of our exterior. It was so bad, that they insisted they tear off all the exterior stucco and stone and replace all the wood underlayment…which spurred an entire exterior makeover that wasn’t exactly on our to-do list this year.

Although it was a terrible discovery, it really helped answer some mysteries. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s 7 years ago, but my levels haven’t been normal since January 2018 and when we moved last year, they just got worse and worse. A couple months ago, I had a trigeminal neuralgia flare up and a few other things that landed me in the hospital. I didn’t recognize myself anymore–I lost all my motivation and energy and even going outside physically hurt. My hair was falling out in clumps, I wasn’t able to exercise like I am accustom to doing and even food on my restricted diet was making me sick. Some days I couldn’t get out of bed. I had to take a step back from work for a bit. My endocrinologist wasn’t sure why my levels were so bad and why they weren’t improving. We swapped medicines and cut out some more foods.

About the same time that they found and removed the mold on our exterior, we actually felt a lot of hope that even though it was a very expensive answer…maybe it was the answer we were looking for.

It’s been almost 2 months since they removed all the mold. And for the first time in over a year, my thyroid numbers are regulated! I just got blood work done again (I have to get it every 8 weeks) and my numbers couldn’t be more perfect. I have more energy than ever. I feel motivated and upbeat and…just…like me. It’s wild. I’m focusing on trying to keep stress down (ha! that’s like trying not to think of an elephant) and I am still eating free of gluten, dairy, grain, soy, eggs, and pork for a few months to help reset my body, too (then I’ll probably add back in eggs and see if my levels remain stable.) We’re not sure if the mold was the whole cause of my health issues over the last year, but the timeline sure line adds up. Mold is no. joke.


Other fun things this week!

The bench I’m sitting on above was sent to us by the sweetest and talented, Ginny MacDonald to celebrate her new stunning collection with Lulu & Georgia. Every piece could fit into our home seamlessly and I’ve already moved the bench to 3 different rooms. :)

• After I shared my denim bar in our closet this week, someone asked me if I freeze my jeans. I was intrigued–The myth of freezing jeans.

A bunch of my favorite BIPOC designer/diy accounts and how we’re moving forward!

Why can’t I stop thinking about this?!

Taking in this whole kitchen scene and committing to taking more risks. It just seems fun!

•Since I’m currently designing our bathroom, I’ve been studying tile like crazy. This post and this post really opened my eyes to some out-of-the-box (but still very classic looking) ideas in the world of tile. It’s all about layering!

All the heart eyes for this wallpaper!

•I’ve never had a more comfortable training shoe than these Nikes I got a few months ago! They are so lightweight!

• Have you watched Songland?? We’re watching the second season on Hulu and can’t stop watching!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I’m going to rearrange the living room for fun! 

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What do you think?

  1. Thank you so much for the recommendations of some new IG accounts. I fell completely in love with @hillhousevintage and Paula’s blog, The Hill House Diaries.
    I am so glad you are feeling so much better. I hope it stays that way!

  2. Ashley says:

    Such good news! My husband has Graves’ disease and we’ve had to alter our diet a lot because of it. Going egg-free was really hard for him though – I’d love to see what kind of egg-free breakfasts you guys do!

  3. Tracie says:

    I am so glad to hear that you are feeling better! When the mold was uncovered on your house, my first thought was how it was affecting you and your family’s health! Take care and stay safe!

  4. Hopefully the mold does the trick longterm! I was so confused by that Onion article until I realized it was an Onion article ????

  5. Maura says:

    Been there! I’m just now coming out of a slew of thyroid issues including Hashimoto’s, which only came to light after years of symptoms from hidden mold exposure. Thank you so much for sharing this, it’s truly inspiring how much you’ve been able to accomplish with these ongoing health issues. I hope you stay well, and I can’t wait to see how the rest of the house turns out!

  6. Estelle Carlson says:

    Yay for getting your health back under control! We had to move to a drier climate because the wet NW known for mold and mildew was causing flare ups for my husband’s autoimmune issues. Any time we even vacation in a house that smells like mildew or mold he flares up again and then calms back down when we go back to our home which we have worked very hard at keeping mildew and mold free. You might have the same kind of reaction. It must feel so nice to have your body and life back to normal!

  7. Gelena says:

    My daughter who is 4.5 hrs old is having weird health issues and breaking out in massive hives all over her body. We allergy tested her and she is literally not allergic to anything. The doctor swears it must be mold (we live in a rental house). How did you go about to discover the mold? Aside from your health were there any other clues? So glad you are feeling better!

  8. Janie says:

    You should check out Red Rocks Tileworks. Handmade Tiles in Nashville They are so beautiful, organic tiles

  9. Katie says:

    Thank you for sharing! I suspected mold before you shared finding it but didn’t want to be the creepy lady saying, “Hey, could your house have mold?” It’s been my prayer that the removal would help (our family had to evacuate our home due to mold, abd I’ve read stories where removal works and also ones where it doesn’t). Here’s hoping you’ve got your golden ticket!! ♥️ Be well.

  10. Andrea says:

    I’m so happy you are having relief from feeling bad!! I’m sure that’s encouraging.

    Also, Songland is my favorite show right now! Ben Platt’s episode is my FAVORITE.

  11. Rebecca says:

    So glad you’re feeling better. We had a mold problem in an apartment we used to rent. It actually creeped through the walls and through the back of our dresser and into our drawers that were up against the wall. I didn’t months with no energy, I was depressed and all of my joints aches all the time.. When we finally discovered the mold, we moved. I felt so so much better after that.

    • Rebecca says:

      Oops… I hit send a little too soon!

      *spent* months with no energy
      Joints *ached*

      Anyway… you get the idea ????

  12. Lynée says:

    I have a very similar story to yours! My Hashimoto’s flared, my hair fell out, and all my digestive issues spiked after we found mold in the walls at our new home. After the mold was removed, I thought I was better, but had lingering symptoms (ER visits etc). A charcoal detox has been crucial in ridding my body of the toxins and restoration. I’m so glad that you have found healing too! It makes ALL of the difference. Be well! Thanks for sharing.

  13. Melkorka says:

    I am so happy to hear that you are feeling better. What you went through sounds very difficult – Wishing you the absolute best!

  14. Carolyn says:

    I’m so glad you’re feeling betting! Not feeling like yourself or having enough energy to do what you love it so tough. Would you consider doing a round up of your favorite denim?

  15. Hayley says:

    Glad you’re feeling better!

  16. Kristin says:

    I’m so excited that you have figured out your health issues! I’ve been wondering if the mold made a difference and that is incredible to hear!

  17. Alison says:

    You should go vegan! It’s better for your health, the planet, and the well-being of animals.
    Eating a whole-foods plant-based vegan diet cured my digestive issues, reduced my stress, improved my sleep, and increased my energy and happiness.

    Love the bench in front of the fireplace!

    • Julia says:

      I eat mostly plant based, but with no grain, gluten, legumes or eggs, I really depend (and love) meat to help give me energy and fill me up.

  18. Bridget says:

    Songland! My family loves it too! Amazon has all the Songland songs available to stream, so my kids are constantly asking Alexa to play Second Guessing! ????????????

  19. Lindsay says:

    This is such great news! Thanks for sharing ❤️

  20. Candice says:

    Please accept my apology for offering unsolicited medical advice, but because unsolicited medical advice has helped me twice (it helped us finally get an autism diagnosis for our son, and I am forever grateful to the woman who asked just the right questions)… Only because you’re posting a bit about your health right now am I mentioning it. I have what’s considered a “rare” genetic disorder that encompasses all the ailments you’ve shared over the years. Those things plus your frame and some pictures made me think of you. Anyhow, Ehler’s Danlos Syndrome (EDS). It took sooooo many doctors to get my diagnosis and it really explained many seemingly unrelated issues. Now because I know, I can focus on some preventative stuff for my kids.
    Glad you’re on a path to wellness. ❤️

  21. Priscila says:

    Your symptoms look like ASIA syndrome caused by breasts implants. This ASIA syndrome also cause hashimoto. ????

  22. Mary says:

    So glad you’re feeling better! I love following along on your renovation journey.

  23. Jeanna says:

    You are right, mold is no joke! My older brother had been hospitalized a couple times, trouble breathing, severe allergic reactions, he just wasn’t himself. He even got to a point where he wasn’t making much sense when he spoke to us. Then severe mold was found in the apartment next to his……………really, really bad, and of course his bedroom and bathroom shared a wall. He moved out, and it took a couple months for him to feel like himself again. All the breathing issues and weird allergic reactions and general blah feeling went away!

  24. Liz says:

    Was it stachybotrys that was the type of mold found on your exterior? Black mold (“stachybotrys”) appears greenish-black, and that’s the type of mold that is toxigenic. Most other molds (penicillium or aspergillus) are pathogenic, but usually treatment and remediation help restore health.

    Just curious if you did mold testing on the actual type of mold. I know. a lot of people see mold and freak out thinking it’s stachy, when it’s actually not.

  25. Catherine L Ibey says:

    Julia, It is good to hear that you are getting back to normal. I to was diagnose with Hastimoto as well back in 1998. I was also expose to mold spurs as well which I was hospitalized for two weeks. Very scary moment. I been watching your IGTV videos when Chris is cooking so I can some ideas to help we as well with my diet. Thank you for sharing such beautiful renovations to your home. You and Chris are amazing with your designs.

  26. Meredith J says:

    SO glad to hear your health has been better! Can’t wait to see what you do with the living room haha

  27. Jennifer I says:

    So so happy you are feeling better! You are so graceful in how you handle your health issues.

  28. That bench is a dream!! So glad you are feeling better – that’s a solid testimony at the importance of proper construction methods!! I really feel like that’s important for people to understand. Thank you for your openness and honesty about your health. <3

  29. Amy says:

    I’m so glad to hear that you are feeling better! Four years ago I had high lead levels from renovations we did and I had the same symptoms. I’m feeling mostly better now, but still have to watch my diet and lifestyle choices. My doctor wants me to get regular bloodwork and I haven’t been good about getting it done. You’re a good example of what I should be doing to take care of myself. Thanks for sharing!

  30. Lauren Aurigemma says:

    As someone who also has Hashimoto’s, I am so happy to hear that your levels are now back to normal. When they are off, you can feel it and it truly can be a miserable process. So YAY for feeling better!

    Second, loving those two photos about the fireplace! It just adds such a great visual. Can’t wait for more!

  31. Jessica says:

    Was reading this with crossed fingers that you would say you are feeling better. So excited for you that you are and feel more like yourself. Thank you for sharing.

  32. Danielle says:

    So glad your numbers and overall symptoms have improved!

  33. Sandy says:

    Such great news! So happy you’re feeling better. I’m amazed at how much you still accomplish when you’re DOWN…no one’s gonna stop you now!! Keep up the great work! ????????

  34. Katie says:

    Wow that’s amazing what an impact mold can have on your health! I started having chronic dry eye as soon as I moved into my townhouse and it cleared up almost immediately after I moved into my new home a couple years ago. That area had some kind of weird pink mold that only existed in that area. Mold is nasty stuff! So glad you are finally feeling better!

    • Grace says:

      This is actually super interesting. If someone is ill, and a cause can’t be found, maybe a temporary change in their living arrangement should be part of trying to diagnose the issue. If after your living arrangement has changed, your situation improves, look into your home as the potential cause for the issues.

      Best of luck, mold is indeed no joke.

  35. Ellissa says:

    So happy to hear your health has improved Julia!

  36. Alyssa Seedorff says:

    Mold is so scary. There’s an old Forensic Files episode about a family who was affected by black mold that’s pretty terrifying. You’re so lucky you found it and took care of it!

  37. Sandy Lewis says:

    Hi there! Do you know what caused the black mold on the exterior? Was there evidence that it came inside at all? I Have the same disease and am a new follower. Can’t believe that I am so late to follow you. Love everything that you guys do! ❤️

    • Julia says:

      Thank you so much!!!!! The type of stucco they used had a styrofoam backing and it trapped moisture behind it and just rotted it away over the last 25 years.

  38. Colette says:

    So glad you’re feeling better! Not sure if you follow Dr. Mark Hyman but I believe he went through something similar with mold. Hope you continue to improve ❤

  39. Leslie says:

    You’re right about mold being no joke. I’m so glad you were able to remove it. From what I’ve heard about mold though, is that even once you take care of the “problem area”, there are still mold spores everywhere. There is a very knowledgeable MD on Instagram who specializes in mold and lime disease, her handle is, you would probably gain some very valuable knowledge there!

  40. Talitha Johnson says:

    Glad you are feeling better! Our health is priceless ❤️❤️

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We believe we should all love where we live.

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