I feel like I am slowly falling apart. And I'm not sure what the cause is. Today is my 9-month anniversary of being gluten free. I am almost more confused by celiac disease than I was 9-months ago, or even 5 years ago when I was diagnosed!
I feel like this is a constant struggle. Sure, give up gluten and get better. But trying to figure out what has gotten you sick is rough. Is my stomach ache gluten related or is it a bigger problem? What is caused by something accidentally getting in my diet, and what is something that I should be asking doctors about??? It's so hard sometimes!
I find myself consumed with these thoughts. All I think about is food. What I've eaten, and what I am going to eat. I get sick and all I think about is the everything that has come in contact with my mouth in the past 3 days. What was it?? I don't know, I just know I feel like shit! I would say that 30% I figure out what glutened me. But the rest is just a mystery. I feel like I am walking up the wrong side of an escalator. Am I really making any progress?
I've had a terrible upset stomach and on and off stomach cramps for like 2 weeks now. So, I am obsessing. But how can I narrow it down? Sometimes symptoms from a glutening last for a day. Sometimes 3 days. Sometimes longer. How do I know that I didn't eat something 2 weeks ago and the symptoms just haven't gone away yet? How can I possibly narrow it down and remove it from my diet? And don't even get me started on cross contamination. Did something in the food get me, or did something that touched my food get me?? UGH!
It just seems impossible.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not giving up. Not now, not ever. I'm am on the gluten-free train for life. I'm just really struggling right now because I am having new health problems pop up and don't quite know what to make of them yet.
I am having contant migraine headaches. I have fatigue that makes it hard to get motivated to do anything. I have weakness in my hands so bad that I have trouble opening a ketchup lid, or a jar that's already been opened. I can't focus or concentrate on anything. It's been like this for at least 2-3 months. Finally I made a doctor's appointment and got the brush off. Oh yeah, sure, we'll run some blood tests...but it's probably just rebound headaches from taking too much exedrine. I tried everything before making that stupid doctor's appointment, because I hate going in so much. I gave up caffeine (to make sure it wasn't triggering headaches), I started drinking water (to make sure it wasn't caused by dehydration), and stopped taking all pain medications (to eliminate possiblity of rebound headaches), and yet they still brush it off as if I am making a big deal out of nothing. I have a strong history of daily migraines that was a battle to figure out when I was still in high school. They went away and I just assumed they were caused by gluten consumption, pre-diagnosis. But now I am 9 months gluten free, and they have returned with a vengence. Shouldn't my history with this account for something??
The brush off at the doctor's office really has me second guessing myself. How do I know that there is some kind of hidden gluten getting into my system causing this? Could this be caused by vitamin deficiencies? Could an associated disease or disorder be presenting itself? Or, God forbid, could I have other food intolerances or allergies that are just now surfacing?
So I am waiting it out, just like the doctor suggested. I'm waiting to see if things get better or worse, and I am waiting to hear back on my blood tests. If the blood work doesn't show anything, I don't know what I am going to do. Switch doctors? Try elimination diets? Go to a chiropractor?
I'm not sure what to do. I am confused, discouraged, and tired of explaining that "I just don't feel well and I can't help it."
On a brighter note, I made gluten free chocolate cupcakes that I am going to go frost and enjoy.