Yesterday morning I had my upper endoscopy. Although the procedure itself is pretty easy on the body, the anaesthesia medication knocked me out all day. I have absolutely no memory of getting dressed, getting in the car, drinking a milkshake and getting into bed. Apparently I was chatting with the doctor and giving goofy grins to my friends and family until I passed out at home. I spent most of the day in bed trying to sleep off the drugs. When I woke up enough to have a coherent conversation with Jeff, he told me that we would get the biopsy results in a week but the doctor thought that I looked like a classic case of Celiac disease.
Celiac disease. I have had a little over a month to process the fact that I probably have to give up gluten for good. This has given me time to mourn over the things that I will never get to eat or drink again. At the top of my list are my favorite 9-grain bread and a cold wheat microbrew. You can be sure that I enjoyed both of those things all month as I waited for my test. But now that the test is over, so is the time of mourning. Now I choose to be thankful. Thankful that there is a name for the thing that has been hurting my body and sapping my energy. Thankful that there are so many good things that I get to eat. Thankful that there are so many wonderful people that have gone before me to pave the way with helpful resources and delicious recipes.
So now that I’m ready, where do I start? As a dietitian, I have a working knowledge of the disease, but the practical side will take some getting used to. Today I will be cleaning out my pantry and refrigerator/freezer. Everything that is gluten-free will be put on the top shelf. My sauces and butters will be labeled with brightly colored tape so that they won’t be contaminated. The kitchen will get a good cleaning, and I will probably be investing in some new utensils that will only be used for gluten-free cooking. At some point, I will have to get my own toaster too.
I am trying to do this step-by-step so that I don’t get overwhelmed. I am so ready to get started on the path towards healing and feeling better. If you have any tips, please share them. I am open to any and all help I can get. And if you have any gluten-free iPhone apps that are a must-have, please share those too!
Thank you all for your kind comments on my last post. I truly appreciate you!