Well, this blog post is long overdue. I have wanted to check in again for a while, but I just didn't know what to write. Free time has been scarce. About every virus in the county has visited our house in the past few months, and either the kids or I or both have been down. It's not been a fun season.
Since January, I've been on the low fodmap diet per my GI dr's orders. While it helped to resolve some of the GI issues I was having, it did not eliminate them, and it completely zapped my energy. I went to a dietician to try to make sure that I was getting enough nutrition on it and learned that I knew more about the diet than she did. Fast forward to March, I decided I couldn't manage my blood sugar well enough on the low fodmap, and I decided to just go strictly gluten free again. Two weeks later, my GI symptoms have been almost erased, and I am starting to have more energy again with less down days.
Two years of medical treatment later and random diagnoses have landed me in the same spot I began this journey on. I must be gluten intolerant. I don't need a test to tell me what I already know from experience. Any time I eat something with gluten in it. I get sick. Really sick. So sick that it knocks me on my back for a few days like the flu. My tummy bloats like I am pregnant. I get brain fog that dumbs me down. It's nasty stuff.
Honestly, I feel kind of jaded and frustrated with the medical community at this point. While gluten intolerance is a legitimate medical diagnosis, very few seems to know about it in my area. Because I was afraid of following a strict diet for relief that was "all in my head," I gave up on it, and I have spent the past year off it much sicker than I needed to be. I can't blame them entirely. I'm at fault too.
I was gluten free for almost my entire pregnancy with Pax, because it was the only thing that helped me survive the GI symptoms that I had. Eating gluten meant throwing up thirty or more times a day. Not eating gluten meant retaining my calories. It only took a couple of doctors doubting that I had gluten intolerance to give me the excuse to eat freely again, because it is so much cheaper to eat "normal." Instead of being strong enough to be my own advocate, I caved to their opinions, and it's made life tougher than it needed to be. Heck, I have huge blocks of time that I simply don't remember, because I was just existing- not living.
I'm moving on. I know gluten and I will never be friends again. I hate that I had to take such a long journey to get here, but I'm here. I really dislike that I will have to check the label of anything that goes in my mouth from this point on, and I really, really hate that I am going to be the kind of dinner guest that is impossible to cook for. However, this is my life. Denial won't make my health return.
Hello, my name is Anna. I have gluten intolerance. My life is not over. It's really just beginning. Apparently, this is part of the story God wants me to tell.
What are you in denial over? What secret struggle do you have that you've let rest for far too long without dealing with it? What do you avoid because you know the cost is high and the road is uncomfortable or awkward? It may not be an illness. It may be an addiction. If it is ruining your life and moving you off the mission of loving and serving Jesus well, it's time to deal with it by God's grace.
Let's move forward together and just accept the story God has written for us. In the end, we're not just telling our story. All of our stories are simply weaving together to tell His... a story about a God who generously loves, redeems, and equips a broken, helpless people and makes them into something new for His name's sake... a perfect bride for His Son Jesus.
Will you take the risk with me? Let's move forward for the sake of Christ. Our time here is short. Let's make the most of this life.
"28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,[a] for those who are called according to his purpose. 29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified." Romans 8:28-30
"For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." Ephesians 2:10