Coeliac Traveller 

(NB: apologies for the language,  this topic makes me abusive it seems)

I was diagnosed with coeliac disease 3 years ago, ish.  Symptoms I’d had for 10 or more years were finally explained and a cure laid out.  No gluten (wheat, barley or rye) ever again.  If I eat even the most measly of crumbs by accident l,  my own body (traitorous twat) attacks my small intestine.  I deem a pretty fucking important section of my own digestive tract,  flat and borderline ineffective.   Let’s be honest though,  the inability to eat something is definitely not as bad as it gets,  no where near.  

Initial reaction? Fuck off. Anger. 

You know the stages of grieving? I grieved the loss of my bowel.  Isn’t that a picture. My sister gave me a fantastic American book that was like ‘ya know what friend,  it IS crap! BE ANGRY!’ then I laughed, cried, jumped up and down on an apple pie…you know… The usual.

Symptoms for me? I hear whispers of ‘please God no…’  too bad. I live em you can read em. MUAHA.

So…if I eat a cake (that’s the obvious one you’ll have thought of):

I loose weight fast. My bmi is 17.9 and my GP is convinced I’m anorexic. My body isn’t absorbing what I eat,  so I’m low on vitamins…and chunk.  The damage doesn’t recover for months and given that’s how often there is a slip up,  I’m struggling.  

Excruciating trapped gas. Ever had it? We once had a woman come in,  thinking she was in labour and crawling up the bed demanding we cut the baby out.  She had trapped gas. I actually took a trick from her and have started wiggling my bum in the air above the level of my head.  If you have coeliac,  do it front of a mirror and it’ll both make a hilarious instagram/snapchat/whatever your medium and fix the bubbling bastard of a problem. 

I get bloated.  Again,  midwifery reference.  I look pregnant I get so poofed up.  so I’ll be starving hungry but as soon as I start eating I feel full.  *shakes fist at the lemon drizzle*

I’ll quickly summarise the rest…mouth ulcers,  anxiety and depression (if bad for long enough),  tired all the time.  Long term? High risk for osteoporosis and bowel cancer.  Should probably write the last two on the takeaway menu tin for when I’m drunk and craving greasy gluten…the best kind

Anyway.  To the point. I’m currently in Thailand and I thought it would be EASY to be Gf here.  To be honest I gave up on day 2.  Airports don’t do GF.  The food I’d made in advance was used up and I was starving,  5 hours into a 10 hour flight and 2 days into a 3 day journey.  The Chinese air hostess didn’t understand and was shoving a mysterious glutenful meal under my nose.  I ate it.  On a plane somewhere over the middle of Russia,  I think my GP will forgive me.  And so the mindset of ‘ahhhh well the damage is done I might as well enjoy myself’ begins…

Are there any other coeliacs out there with a decent solution?  I imagine it something along the line of coeliac space food that turns into a roast dinner with hot water right?  I can dream/ patent that.

So when they serve sandwiches and bananas for breakfast at the hostel I reluctantly indulge. 

Fuck it.  I’m already gonna be ill,  might as well enjoy it and avoid being permanently hangry while I’m here ey!?  I can almost hear my sister and mum tutting from here…

*inhales pastry*


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