I live in fear of gluten. It’s true. No, I won’t have an anaphylactic reaction to gluten. No, I don’t think it will kill me. But it will make me vomit. And I HATE to vomit. I hate the feeling before and the feeling after- it’s all miserable. And there is no way for me to guess how long it will last. Or if it was really gluten or a stomach bug of some sort. So I live in fear. Of gluten. Mostly of the crumbs that may contain gluten.
I live in a house full of gluten. I am hyper-aware of anything that contains it and I will avoid it. And wash my hands excessively. And wash things over and over again. With new sponges.
And I watch people in my kitchen. I’m sure I drive people nuts. If I see someone set a utensil down on the counter I wonder if there is a crumb there. When was the last time I cleaned the counter? Are they planning to put that back in the food? How can I distract them and put a new clean one out, on a clean plate that I’m also pulling out of the cabinet. Fresh. Gluten free.
I try to tell myself to chill out. Relax. Trust people. Uh-huh. You true them. You vomit. That’s what happens.
Even at work, on treat day, when people bring in a bag of something thats gluten free, or a fruit or veggie, I am very suspicious. If it’s an unopened bag of chips I try to sneak in and get some in a bowl before anyone has the chance of sticking their hand in there. A hand that may have a glutinous crumb on it somewhere. If it’s fruit they prepared at home, I don’t bother. They could have cut it on a counter that had crumbs. Or used a knife that they just used to slice bread with that was put back in the drawer without being washed because it’s not “dirty”.
I scan everything with an app on my phone that tells me if an item has gluten in it. I also have it alert me to aspartame, but that’s another story… I even scan bottled water. You never know what they will put in something. The one time it said it was an at your own risk kind of thing because it didn’t have information about the water company. So see? There could be gluten floating in that water!
It was my birthday the other day. I bought candles to put in the cupcakes I had made by someone I trust (imagine that! I do trust some people!) but there were no ingredients listed. So I wouldn’t stick them in my cupcake. I put one in my older daughters and my husbands cupcake and I blew those ones out. I couldn’t risk the fact that maybe they had gluten in the coloring of the candle.
Someone tole me about a new cafe in town that advertised gluten free goodies. I walked in. I walked out. They had a big display case of pretty, delicious looking food. But it was all in the same case. Gluten filled and gluten free. That to me does not mean gluten free. That means crumbs of all shapes and sizes are floating around in there and contaminating the gluten free items.
Have you seen Monsters, Inc? When they freak out and sanitize the monster that had a sock on them. That’s my reaction to gluten. I freak out. Because I don’t want to vomit. There is no pill I can take to lesson the effects gluten has on me. I can drink some aloe to try to soothe my stomach. I can use an oil blend to rub under my ribs to hopefully lessen the burn. But I can’t just pop a pill and feel better. Who knows, that pill might have gluten in it even if one did exist!