Monday, May 25, 2009

Now it's more personal!

Okay you gluten allergy! I know you are not one single ingredient - but a protein of wheat, barley and rye - but you are in everything! Why are you in licorice? I love Twizzlers!

Why are you in the little taco seasoning packets? Why are you in canned soups? Don't you know how busy I am already without having to spend time in the grocery stores reading labels? No more quick dinners but now I have to actually plan meals. Not so many casseroles and already prepared stuff but back to the basics of meat, fresh vegetables, potatoes (thank goodness:)

I guess it's not your fault that my immune system is tricked into thinking food is a poison. I can handle this. What I am having a problem with is that now you're messing with my son!

How do I tell him not to eat bread, pasta, pizza, cookies, hot pretzels, sandwiches, pop tarts, bagels, granola, sauces, Hot Pockets, stuffing, pancakes, smores, or birthday cake? And don't drink beer when you go to college. Oh, and no more hot lunches at school. Now that makes my 6:30 am morning more fun!

I know, it could be much worse. I am venting. And it feels good. I need this blog more than I think:)

This gluten thing is hereditary. Matt has mentioned that his food gets stuck when he eats a burger (on a bun) so I was not at all surprised when I called the doctor's office for his results on Saturday. His food allergies are a carbon copy of mine; in fact, his gluten intolerance was a bit higher than mine. I don't know if I like this "feeling responsible" thing that comes with having biological children.

This is when I really wish I had my medical history though. Maybe I wouldn't have had to "not feel good" for so long. Food intolerance worsens over time so that's why my body "handled" things up to this point - at my expense of not feeling up to par. I wonder if my birth mom or birth dad suffer from the same thing. I bet one of them does.

So on one hand, I'm glad that we found this out for Matt while he is only 13 so that he can feel his best everyday. It's hard enough being a teenager without feeling so crummy all the time. I don't know if he's felt the brain fog like I did, but he definitely has this chronic congestion which I am betting goes away within a week or so on this new diet plan.

Tonight he asked what I'm going to pack him for lunch tomorrow.

Yikes! Good thing I have some gluten free crackers and some gluten free pepperoni (can you say our own little "lunchable") and a gluten free peanut butter rice bar and an apple.

Good thing he is not my picky eater like Brendan! (who isn't allergic to any foods)

Good thing summer is right around the corner!

Good thing I'll have a few months to get this new routine in place.

Good thing that now I am more determined to meet with a dietitian. (when it was just me, it got put on the back burner.) But he is a growing boy.

Now it's more personal!

I've found the needle in the haystack

Really. It's taken a very long time, but I do feel a bit victorious and actually feel like rejoicing because it all makes sense now. It's been at least a 7 year mystery. It all began when I noticed my food "getting stuck" while eating. It is not a pleasant feeling. In fact, it is very, very painful and not even drinking water helps. That makes it even worse. When this would happen while dining out, I'd excuse myself and make a bee line for the bathroom so I could suffer alone until the feeling passed. Not to be gross, but not even expelling the food would help. I would still feel this tightness.

Went to several doctors and after given meds for reflux or some anti-yeast antibiotic for having too much yeast in my system (WHAT?, I knew that wasn't the answer. Had my esophagus dilated a couple of times and that helped temporarily. It wasn't until we were living in Indiana when our allergist suggested doing a biopsy of my esophagus for suspected EE - Esinophilic Esophagitis. Which is basically like having asthma in your esophagus. Yep, he was right. White blood cells aren't supposed to be in your esophagus. Probably an allergy. Did allergy testing at the time but looking back it was mostly environmental stuff they tested and not many foods. I was given an oral steroid inhaler to use every day just like an asthmatic would. (Matt was diagnosed with asthma at age 2, so again, it makes sense. I learn in reverse about medical stuff; more from my biological kids)

Since moving back here, I noticed my food getting stuck again more often. Lately, I've had thyroid problems too. So I'd blame my tiredness, brain fog - which makes your head feel like it's lugging a ton of bricks around, irritability, weight gain, bloating on that. But lately my thyroid numbers are okay. So stumped again.

But the feeling of having my throat swell is a new symptom - more pronounced then when my food would get stuck. It would swell without any food being there. And that's very scary! It started happening frequently and almost immediately after eating. I felt like I should have an Epi pen so I went back to the doctor and asked for more food allergy testing.

Boy am I glad I did! It's actually a relief to know that this is something I can control without medication. For the past several weeks that I've been trying this new diet, I've noticed a definite improvement in how I feel. When I "cheat" I can feel the effects. It's so not really worth it. That is how I will stay on track. Feeling good is the best incentive to eating right.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Why I haven't blogged lately

Because I'm going NUTS and going BANANAS! (about all I can eat)

Because I have so much on my PLATE. (not food either)

Because I've had a lot to DIGEST. (my stomach can't do that)

Because I've come to a FORK in the road. (it's really a dinglehopper anyway right?)

Because my emotions sometimes lately BOIL OVER instead of SIMMER.
(wouldn't yours if you couldn't eat a hot buttered roll out of the oven, or your favorite cookie/cake?)

Because I am trying to use my NOODLE, Rice Noodle that is . . .

Because I have a lot to learn now.

I have an allergy to GLUTEN, WHEAT, MILK, CORN & WALNUTS!

What is left to eat!??

Because I have FOOD on the brain and am trying to learn a whole new way of eating and cooking and eating out:)

More details soon . . .

Brendan's Band Concert

Brendan played the saxophone this year in 5th grade band. There was supposed to be a concert around Christmas time but due to the weather it got canceled. So unfortunately for us, we had to wait until the end of April to hear him play. No, really, APRIL because we never ever hear him play (practice) at home!

The band as a whole sounded great! Then they played "We will, we will Rock you" and each person in band got a turn to stand up and play that part SOLO. Brendan kept standing . . . which signaled he was going to give it a try. Not everyone did the solo. I was so nervous for him. Kevin and I kept looking at each other with questioning eyes.

But Brendan totally ROCKED!!! He sounded so awesome! We were so proud of him!

Grandma, Grandpa and Aunt B are our witnesses. We are not just prejudice because he is our son. He has chosen to not continue with band next year in Jr. High. We wish he would but we know we can't force him to. If only I can convince him to play that solo one more time for my video camera.