Celiac Disease is not glamorous and a lot of times it is the farthest from that. This year I have decided to make my new years resolution to accept my normal. Living with an invisible disease, most people do not know the full extent of my illness and the struggles I deal with on a daily basis because I don’t look sick. I am going to be extremely honest in this post in hopes that it helps someone going through something similar or to help someone have more sympathy for things they do not understand. (And honestly to help myself more than anything) I have been living with Celiac Disease since I diagnosed at the age of 19 but I am coming to the realization that I have yet to accept that this is the hand that I was dealt.
I ended my 2016 ill and crying in the bathroom of a good friend’s apartment while the party raged on a floor below. The last hour of 2016 was spent in and out of the bathroom trying to put on a happy face despite the fact that I had undoubtedly been “glutened”. Something I had eaten at the party had made me violently ill, however, I had only eaten a dip that I made myself so I knew it was safe. This is means that someone at the party must have cross-contaminated the dip by sticking a chip/cracker/something in the dip that was not gluten free. I snuck out of the bathroom a few minutes before the countdown, got my NYE kiss from my BEYOND understanding boyfriend (who brushed his teeth at the party so this could happen), and then left the party long before it was over. This was the second time I had been “glutened” in 2 weeks and because of that I have been feeling defeated, discouraged, and straight up sick of being me.
This is where my new years resolution comes into play. I have been going through this new aspect of my life without truly accepting that being a celiac is my normal. I eat gluten free but definitely don’t eat healthy, I sleep less than 5.5 hours most nights while laying in bed for over 10 hours, I don’t take vitamins or supplements to help counter the effects this disease has on my body. This year will be dedicated to informing those around me, getting my health back on track, and stop apologizing for my disease. It is time to get a doctor who truly understands my disease and how to maintain my health to my best ability. (If you are in the St. Louis area and know a Celiac specialist, please send their name my way) I won’t lie, I can’t give up sweets but I will add more leafy greens. I’m not going to get a gym membership but I’m going to try to take up living room yoga and longer walks with the pup. It is time to accept that I am living with an autoimmune disease and make this life into the best one that I can live.