I am admittedly a pessimist. Or as my dad called it, a realist. I live by Murphy’s law.
Some may say that negativity is self fulfilling but I tend to disagree. It is years of bad luck and disappointments that have shaped my outlook on life. But when I finally had my aha moment of the gluten and dairy connection, something changed in me.
No, not just my lifestyle, but my whole life.
I have suffered with stomach issues since infancy. I was told by my mother that I had terrible colic and had to be put on soy formula. I had stomach aches in grade school which were attributed to nerves.
Later on I was diagnosed with gastritis. I could never figure out why Chinese food and ice cream made me sick. Then came the gallstones, followed by the IBS diagnosis. Then the hysterectomy.
I always thought that all these things were connected but could never prove it.
Once I went gluten and dairy free, I found freedom from illness, but also faced the restrictions of diet. It is the hardest, most frustrating, maddening, most rewarding, most enlightening thing I have ever done.
It is a daily struggle, a trial, a triumph, and sometimes an utter failure. Sometimes I feel utterly alone. Then someone will ask me a question about dairy free milk or gluten free bread. Or my son and brother will talk with me about a new gluten free product. Or my husbands smiles and eats my latest food concoction. Then I realize, I am not alone.
I’ll be angry because a restaurant doesn’t have a decent gluten free menu or has no options at all. Or a waiter will put the bread basket in front of me. Then I come across a chef and staff who really care and go out of their way to please me. Then I grin from ear to ear.
Living this lifestyle is an excercise in mood swings. I try to dwell on the positives but sometimes my realism wins out. Sometimes it is a true pain in the ass. Could I stop and go back to eating pizza? Sure I could. But I would be back living in the bathroom.
Attending AA meetings with my alcoholic ex husband taught me something. There is always someone worse off than you. That is a fact. It could be a whole lot worse.
I try not to dwell on what I can’t eat and appreciate what I can. This way of life has honed my kitchen skills. I have no choice in that regard. There are no gluten free drivethrus.
What surprises me most of all is that I don’t really miss gluten or dairy. There is a way to duplicate almost anything I have a craving for. And if I can’t I find I can live without it. I cut corners whenever I can with packaged goods. That helps a lot.
If you are having tummy issues I suggest you try an elimination diet. You might be surprised how good you feel. It has not only made me better in health, but a better person all around.
If I can help you in your journey please contact me.