Be Well

Surprise, Surprise

Well, I finally heard from my doctor on that Celiac-wheat sensitivity test I took last week.  The results came as a surprise, actually.  Friends, here’s the deal-io:

I don’t have Celiac.  And the results showed no indication of wheat sensitivity.  Not even close.  Totally negative across the board.

In anticipation of this test, I ate plenty of wheaty stuff in the days leading up to it.  I saw it as my last hurrah, so to speak.  Delicious artisan bread, cake and sourdough English muffins drenched in the saltiest butter I could find.  And after the test I committed to eating well and super clean, my attempt to flush the evil toxins out. 

Apparently wheat isn’t so evil after all.

I don’t know how to feel about it.  Part of me wanted a different answer.  I wanted something solid to point to, something that I could take control of and actively change in my life, for her to say to me “this is it, and if you change it you have the power to make it all better.”  I have gone on my gluten free kicks in the past, and none have resulted in improved health.  I have even been completely gluten free for the past six days, and all the bad symptoms have been relentless, as usual.  My digestion issues, pain, fatigue, skin sensitivity, hair loss, everything has stayed the same, just as they did before, when I went as long as six weeks without gluten.  At the most, I had days with slightly better digestion, but the improvement never stuck around even as I remained committed to eating clean and wheat free.

But there was always the possibility of it changing, of feeling better.  I suppose that is why I stuck to it, and why I was expecting something different this time around.

So now I will continue on, working to find the answers.  I remain committed to eating well, resting, exercising, and celebrating the things in life that make my heart sing.  Dietary indulgences will merely be an occasional thing. 

It is nice to know when I go back to Paris I can stand on a busy street corner, spy a croissant through the window of a lovely patisserie, and indulge without harming my body.  I am relieved to know when I visit Carmel with Husband this December for our anniversary, we can go to our favorite cheese shop in the village and pick up some bread, olives, wine and other goodies. I can sit on the beach and partake in all the deliciousness and not get sick.   I will have buttery, sugary Christmas cookies to enjoy.  If I want chocolate biscotti with my coffee I will have it.

But as wonderful as that all sounds, I still want the answers; so great and vibrant health can be mine.

The journey continues . . .

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Waiting Game

Later this morning I am off to the lab for another round of blood work.  My last doctor’s visit on Monday included the usual complaints: fatigue, severe low blood pressure, pain throughout my body, headaches, digestive issues, even (and this is going to sound weird) painful skin.   When I saw her this week, she told me my previous panel revealed severe nutritional deficiences.   Apparently there’s a fancy pants test that can show how long vitamins and minerals are sticking around in the body.  In my case, they’re not sticking around long at all.  Something is preventing these healthy little buggers from absorbing properly in my digestive tract.  And whatever the cause, it is making me more tired, more achy, and yes, even more cranky.   Not very becoming.

So today’s lab visit will include the dreaded Celiac test.

To make a very long, complicated story short, I’m going to find out if I am allergic to wheat.

With all the things that are wrong with me, yes I have had this test done before.  My doctor now suspects I received false negative results in the past, due to what I had eaten in the days prior to testing, or perhaps even lab report errors.

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t bummed out.  I love all things wheaty.  And if the news comes back with the result I am expecting, I am in for a radical change in the way I approach food.  What does that mean?  I will have to be much more conscious.  Not my strong suit.  I will have to be better at planning meals.  Also not my strong suit.  It also means if I want better health (and I really, really do) I will have to foresake my beloved cake, cookies, and crusty artisan bread slathered in butter; not to mention scrumptious sandwiches on that aforementioned crusty bread.

 I have mixed feelings.  Part of me wants it to be the answer.  Then I know why I feel so crappy all the time, and I have an opportunity to be better.   The other part of me desperately wants it to be something else, so I can say Aha!  It isn’t my penchant for bread, cake and cookies, so there!  Somehow, I just don’t think it’s going to go down like that.

So I will drive over to my neighborhood lab this morning with a heavy heart.  But interestingly enough, I also feel thankful for the opportunity to know, and to feel better.

I get to see my doc next Thursday for the big reveal.  I’ll keep you updated!

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