Taking the full measure of life

Speaking of diagnoses . . .

August 7th, 2008 · 2 Comments

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I went out tonight for dinner with an ex-boyfriend.  He was my first love, actually; we dated from age 17 to 20.  We’ve become pretty close friends again in the last few months, and we go out for a meal together every few weeks.  Tonight we were belatedly celebrating our birthdays, which are close together.  At dinner, he had questions about my food restrictions and how careful I have to be. I explained about the food allergies but then went on to explain about celiac disease, as well, and how gluten can hurt a person with celiac even if he/she doesn’t realize it.

“Wait,” he said. “Are you saying you’ve had this all along?”

“Yep,” I said with a wry smile.

“Well, that sucks.”

“It does and it doesn’t. Sometimes I think, Wow, if I’d only known earlier, I could have saved myself these years of feeling bad.  But when I was in college, or when I was younger in general, I wasn’t good about taking care of myself. And eating gluten-free tends to be a lot more expensive, so that would have been a major stressor to add to my life [at a time when I was really poor]. So this discovery kind-of happened exactly when it needed to, exactly at a time when I was capable of dealing with it.”

“That makes sense.”

“Yeah–you know, that’s why I always had an upset stomach when we were dating.”

“Oh yeah!” he said, as if it were as clear a memory as if it had happened yesterday.

You know you had an upset stomach a lot if your former boyfriend remembers it eight years later. . . .

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Kate // Aug 7, 2008 at 9:24 pm

    LOL! Oh man!

    I remember a GREAT date I had – it was GREAT unti lI ate dinner, that is. This was all prior to diagnosis. Our dinner conversation was brilliant and fun… and then we went to the movies. Throughout the movie, I was convinced that my stomach was going to explode! Oh, it hurt so much! And I was incredibly distracted, anxious and in pain. When the movie ended, my sweet date was ready to meet up with friends and go dancing. I had to beg off. He brought me home. I’m SURE he thought the date sucked. Took me a while to convince him otherwise.

    But honestly, I had NO idea what had hit me until AFTER I was diagnosed.

    Ah…. tummy aches!

  • 2 Amanda // Aug 8, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    Before I figured out the gluten thing I had a date with a boy who was really into working out. Well, we went and had dinner (hamburgers) and went to get coffee. Well, my stomach did the bloat thing and he said to me that he could teach me how to get rid of that belly fat. OMG So embarrassing. I also had the stomach run to the bathroom and couldn’t get the toilet to flush. Well, that was our first and only date.

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