I didn’t think I would be writing this blog, but I just started talking to my best friend about it and it feels so good to unload. I don’t have a solution to this problem nor do I have any idea what’s going to happen moving forward but I’m going to talk about it anyway. As some of you might know, I have celiac disease. To put it simply, my body violently rejects the protein called gluten. Gluten, as you might not know, is in ALMOST everything you see on a daily basis. Before my diagnosis, regular extreme stomach pain was something considered normal. For most of my life, I could never seem to place the cause of the pain. When I was about 15, I suddenly couldn’t tolerate milk. It happened overnight. The morning before I could eat my usual cornflakes and milk and the next morning not even ten minutes after the breakfast I found myself on the toilet. This had to be repeated before it clicked in my brain that: “Hey! Maybe milk doesn’t agree with you anymore.” Ever since then I tended to avoid most milk products but the stomach pain still came and went.
Once I came over to the Netherlands as an au pair, my host parents (both doctors) put the two pieces together and encouraged me to run some tests. They thought that I might be gluten intolerant with secondary lactose intolerance. My sensitivity to lactose base products came from the years of damage to my intestines from the gluten. At first, I went on a gluten-free diet (It wasn’t completely gluten-free. I had no idea.) and those intense stomach ache became something of the past. Or well not really. A lot of time passed between attacks which were really nice for me. I, however, wanted to run the blood test to ensure that I’m actually allergic to gluten before I make the semi-expensive lifestyle change. I went back onto a full gluten diet and almost instantly I was in so much pain. It was agony. We did the test and the results came in after I already returned to South Africa. The host dad simply said that I should avoid gluten at all cost and that’s what I did. I went down the long path of trying to figure everything out and with some trails and errors; I was able to fully adapt to the gluten-free lifestyle. Once I immigrated to the Netherlands, I made arrangements to see a doctor. I wanted them to go over the test and tell me if I’m gluten intolerant or if I have celiac disease. He took one look at those test results from two years prior and my diagnosis was final. It was a semi-hard blow. I have adjusted to the gluten-free lifestyle at that point but I had the motion in the back of my mind that I could switch back to a normal diet eventually. This obviously isn’t something I can do with medicine at the present moment. That being said the second I can take some pill and eat gluten without any problems, sign me up. Anyway, let me get to the point. My history with food and less than ideal response to something in my food is an ugly one. It took me a lot of work to gain back my trust in food after all the pain I always seemed to go through because of it and…these last few months I’ve been struggling. The added crazy hormones and weight gain because of the PCOS surely isn’t helping. I hate that I have no control over my body.
These last few months those painful stomach aches started and to my utmost horror regular intense bloating became a normal once more. It’s incredibly frustrating because I’m not doing anything different. My diet, the products we use, the meals we eat, has been the same for the last two years. But, suddenly I’m responding to something in my food? How is that even possible? It’s not a gluten attack. The area where I feel the pain is about the same but the level of intenseness (is that even a word?) isn’t the same. The pain is a bit different but it sure as hell isn’t nice. Honestly, I don’t know what to do anymore. Is it stress? Although saying that I wouldn’t consider myself sick with the stress. The blood tests I had done the other day showed I was in the normal range. Who knew they could even test that? Is it the paranoia? I honestly feel lost and just…in Afrikaans, we would say gatvol. It basically means I’m sick and tired of the same old bullshit. My problems with responding to food in the less than ideal way should be something of the past. The only food allergy I’m supposed to have should be all figured out by now. This is bullshit.
I just don’t know anymore. I’m frustrated that I seem to be back at the start line when it comes to my food allergy. Do I really have to go through everything I eat and try to figure out what I’m responding too? I just don’t know anymore. This bullshit is the last thing I needed right about now. This blog isn’t really going anywhere. I’m mostly just complaining. I guess I will ask the doctor the next time I see them although usually, I don’t really go to the doctor that often and I don’t really want to make an appointment just for this. It feels almost silly. I already have two almost silly appointments under my belt these last few weeks and I just can’t add a third one to the list. Sigh. I think I need to take a break, drink a cup of tea and watch some series on Netflix.
I’m sorry that this blog is kind of bleh. I don’t really know what to tell you. Heck, the only reason why I’m sharing this because I hope someone else struggling with celiac disease or a food allergy will have some tips for me.
Thank you so much for reading and I will see you in a click!