I woke up, filled with dread. This day had loomed in my mind like a dark cloud on a distant horizon.
I rolled out of bed and left my apartment, still wearing the clothes in which I slept. Turning the corner, I walked into Swallow Cafe and evaluated the pastry selection.
Where were the weird gluten-free pastries I had seen just last week — and turned up my nose at? Not at Swallow, apparently.
From there, I walked to The Bean. On previous visits, I had seen rows of vegan items and GF stuff next to the menu of green juices and chai variations. Today? Nada.
With a heavy sigh, I gave up and ordered a cinnamon, gluten-laden muffin and walked home, feeling like a big quitter.
When I got home, I logged on to my computer and got ready to work. That’s when I saw it: the date was July 31.
My real GF month starts tomorrow.
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August 1 has been on my calendar as DAY ONE OF MY GLUTEN-FREE MONTH since a doctor’s appointment in June and yet now that the day has arrived, I am thoroughly unprepared.
My endocrinologist* suggested that I try a gluten-free month. The fact that it wasn’t a complete surprise didn’t lessen my horror.
“Maybe wait until you return from Kenya,” she said.
“Yes, I think that’s a good idea,” I replied, thinking about other reasons to put off doing this terrible thing.
Truth be told, a fellow traveler was gluten-free (and vegan) and she managed. Somewhat. Meanwhile, I ate Siana Springs Tent Camp’s pancakes each morning and still somehow managed to lose five pounds in ten days.
I had previously gone through intensive patch testing to determine what was making my body freak out. Gluten/wheat didn’t show as an allergy, but I have since been told that the test isn’t 100% reliable.
The doctor asked me to give it a month, saying that if I didn’t see any benefit, I could go back to my daily gluten-fest.
Some of my favorite foods have to be eliminated. I’ve had decent pasta substitutes but can I live without French toast at brunch? And for all of my anti-chain ranting, I have to admit that I really enjoy Starbucks pastries on my way to work. Unfortunately Starbucks doesn’t offer any GF pastries.
I realize that I am also going to have to do more cooking, and it is not something that excites me. In a perfect world, I would cook once a week – no more, no less.
But I think my biggest resistance is this: I’m pretty sure I will feel better. And that means that a gluten-free lifestyle is in my future. Yes, it would be great to avoid headaches, bloating and other symptoms that are probably food-related, but I am struggling to accept that such a big lifestyle change is looming.
If you GF types have suggestions, recipes and/or warnings, please leave them in the comments.
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In closing, a promise: I won’t become a blogger who talks about GF stuff all the time. That sh*t’s annoying and I’m annoying enough as is.