This is a guest post by Kristi. You can follow her Facebook page at Celiac Chick Newburgh.
I wanted to share my transition to the gluten free life almost two years ago! I would consider most of my life’s GI routine to be pretty normal. I went a lot but I thought that was normal! However, at the end of my 3rd pregnancy, I got really sick one night. I was 8 1/2 months pregnant and had one awful night in which I went to the bathroom with diarrhea about 20-25 times. Yeah…it sucked! I was even on a church retreat that weekend and was so sick! Anyhow, shortly after giving birth to Ryder, I got sick again about a month later. It was not as extreme but still enough to get my attention and get me into my primary docs office. Of course, they asked me if I knew when I was having these issues. Was it after I ate a certain food? I had no idea because I was going so frequently! I had my blood tested for CBC, parasites, etc. My calcium was low…my iron was low (and looking back, I never could give blood…go figure!).
Then I started dropping my baby weight…fast. (Now I wasn’t complaining about this, mind you!). I did stool samples…ewww…not fun! I finally was sent to a GI doc to see what else could be going on. So I met with the GI doc and he asked me all kinds of questions and asked me if I had heard about celiac disease. Well, my good friend Scarlett already suspected I may have this as she watched another good friend go through some similar symptoms and get diagnosed. Of course I wanted to totally ignore this!!! I just wanted to have Chrohn’s or something that you treat with medicine, not a GLUTEN FREE DIET! No way! Anyhow, he ran some blood tests but somehow I was not tested for celiac disease. However, I was tested for Chrohn’s and my results came back that I likely had it. So I was scheduled for a colonoscopy and sent on my way. I thought about it for the next few days…that might not be too bad…I may have to stop eating salad and stuff but I would live right? I now know how wrong I was…Chrohn’s definitely has awful risks and celiac disease can be mostly controlled through the gluten free diet.
So I had the colonoscopy…everything looked ok according to my GI doc but it would be a week before the results came back. I asked him on the exam table…while I was still loopy from the meds…if he would please order the celiac blood test. And I swear…my mom and sister, Kim, as my witness!…that he only ordered the tests to appease me! I was mad but guess how the results came back…I likely had celiac disease because my tTg antibody test was through the roof. Also, the biopsy from the colonoscopy came back to show I had microscopic colitis. That’s a whole other beast.
Back to the celiac results though, I was scheduled for an endoscopy and guess what…I had enough damage that the doctor was able to diagnosis me with celiac disease on the spot. I pretty much knew this was what was going to happen at this point. So I made a deal to wait 10 days to gluten free since I wanted to have a long farewell to gluten free party! On September 20, 2010, I went gluten free and have not purposely consumed any gluten since!
After my diagnosis, they suggested I get my kids tested. I kinda suspected my middle child might have celiac disease at this point. His height was only 3% at age 3 and my husband is 6ft, 2 in so we figured something might be going on. My daughter tested negative and you guessed it, my son, Dylan was positive. Endoscopy was actually negative though! SO they told us he did NOT have celiac disease…I found this hard to believe since they told me he had a lactose intolerance (which we did not previously though). We actually followed their advice and kept him on gluten for another 5 months, then finally did the gene test. He was positive for the DQ2 and DQ8 so we took him off gluten right away at age 3 1/2. He has done really well. Now my other two children also have the genes but have not been triggered since their antibodies remain negative.
Now about our life…I AM OBSESSED with baking! I love to bake even more now since I can make goodies for me and my son. I have a Facebook page called Celiac Chick Newburgh. Please feel free to send me a friend request and follow along. I have also started a wonderful supportive Facebook group page called Celiac and Gluten Intolerant. I LOVE my GLUTEN FREE LIFE AND would LOVE to share some great recipes with you! Enjoy!
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