nuturing myself: gluten free

Today's all about rest and recovery.

Last night, I realized that I had accidentally eaten a lot of gluten (spread out over the entire day) and as a result, today I feel awful.

(And felt even more awful yesterday.)

This process of being gluten free is just that: a process. Even up until the summer, I was still justifying the occasional cheating by telling myself I could just take an antihistamine, which makes it so I can breathe again, at least. But the antihistamine only deals with the asthma attack that gluten gives me, it doesn't do anything about the body aches or the acid reflux or the brain fog or the generalized anxiety.

(And that's not even the entire list of my symptoms. I'm not always even aware that things *are* a symptom of glutening, until they disappear and then appear.)

After the last time I knowingly ate gluten (at a charming French restaurant in Marrakech - I just couldn't resist the handmade pastries the first time we went there) when it became abundantly clear that the short term pleasure of even the most amazing pastry did not in any way, shape or form justify the way I felt after, I went completely gluten free. Full stop, no more cheating.

(I'd been mostly gluten free for a few years and I was "eating less refined carbs" for a few years before that - it was the process of giving up carbs that made me realize how much better I felt when I didn't eat wheat, which started me on this journey.)

And even being as strict as I can be, I still get glutened accidentally.

It's difficult, practicing being entirely gluten free. It's very difficult. It's difficult giving up food items that I love, it's difficult because gluten hides in a lot of strange things, it's difficult because cross contamination is everywhere. It's difficult because it's socially limiting sometimes. It sucks. It's difficult and I hate it sometimes. (Which makes me want to give up and eat gluten again. Which would really hurt me more.)

And so I remind myself that like all the other things I practice which are difficult, it's worth while.
It's worth while because I like to breathe. I like not hurting and feeling bad. I choose breathing and not hurting over (for example) pastry.

And so it helps if I can think of eating gluten free as a way of nourishing myself, of nurturing myself. Helping myself feel better.

And so I'm getting better at practicing being gluten free. I'm figuring it out. I hurt today, but now I know to avoid two more things that hurt me. I'm practicing.

And I'm nurturing myself with the choices I make.