Most of the time, I can deal with these dietary compromises. But some days? A girl just wants to be like any other gluten-lovin', junk-food-eatin' teenager.
As the month for celiac awareness, May is full of stories educating others about celiac disease. Peeking at my blog's past May posts shows a variety of topics like: six reasons to befriend a celiac, mastering the magic of gluten free baking and feeling great-ful. Positive topics to reflect my typically positive attitude.
What people should also know about celiac disease, though? No matter how long someone has had it and how many times and ways they've learned to cope, bad days happen.
You don't grow out of feeling left out during parties when the birthday girl cuts into her gluten-lovin' cake.
|Thank goodness for my own mac and cheese recipe...|
You don't stop drooling when a friend digs into fresh mac and cheese from the farmer's market - even though you brought your own dinner.
You get better at packing for overnight trips - but not any less annoyed.
The fact is, celiac disease - in its physical, emotional and mental effects - doesn't follow a straight line of progress. Most days, celiac disease is just a part of me. Part of my life. Avoiding crumbs and bringing a lunch box occurs as naturally as brushing my teeth before bed.
|According to Beyond Celiac|
On days when celiac and I start fighting, though, that's OK. It doesn't matter how "good" you are at being gluten free, how long it's been or how much your family and friends do to make you feel "normal." You can hate celiac. You can rail at the unfairness of being one of the 1 in 133 Americans affected. You can even dream of a fluffy, gluten-y croissant - maybe even cry over it. (I'm not ashamed to say I've been there).
Being an advocate for celiac disease doesn't require being positive and "loving" your gluten free life all day, every day. It means embracing the real emotions hitting you that day - whether love or hate - and then working to improve celiacs' daily lives. Through tastier gluten free goodies. Through more community support (especially on ranting days!) Through more public awareness.
Sharing my body with celiac disease isn't easy and some days I do, indeed, hate the disease that controls so many aspects of my life. To me, though, that's what Celiac Awareness Month is all about: revealing the facts, the stats and the daily realities of celiac disease.
Sometimes my daily reality features a lot of hatin'. But that only makes the days I'm proud to be a celiac - proud to have endured medical setbacks, adapted to my new diet and join the gluten free community - even sweeter.
*Also found at SITSGirls's Saturday Sharefest*
What do you do during "celiac hating" days? What does celiac advocacy mean to you? Comment below!