Breaking up with gluten

Mere moments after I nearly threw a GF muffin at bread-loving Oprah, I made peace with gluten over gluten-free beer, naturally.

Mere moments after I nearly threw a GF muffin at bread-loving Oprah, I made peace with gluten over beer, naturally.

I cried over bread. And the box of granola bars. The cereal, too. Ugly cried. Kim K. cried.

The pile of gluten-rich food kept growing atop my counter. A sacrificial loaf. After a good cry and a donation to my local food pantry, I drove to Hy-Vee and bought some fancy rice flour.

I’d like to think we are all, “I. Love. Bread.” Oprah Winfrey sometimes, only now my favorite recipes — and my body — require more care. After months of doctor’s appointments and blood tests, I was recently diagnosed with celiac disease. No more normal bread and beer. 

Between Googling “Is chocolate gluten free?” for the 10th time and finding new, healthy recipes, I’ve realized change is most glamorous when I control it. When I embarked on a new goal to go to law school, I researched and ordered LSAT prep materials, set a study schedule and carved a nook on my shelf for the stack of books. I tweeted about it, wrote about it and changed my lock screen to a picture of Elle Woods in LSAT study mode. Like I said, change is glamorous when I control it.

Yet here I was, wiping away tears as I built a lopsided tower of oatmeal boxes — maple and brown sugar, apple cinnamon, the “Oat Revolution” brand my mom bought me a while back (a revolution is a bold claim from a box of oatmeal). I broke up with gluten, inhaled some chocolate, then baked gluten-free banana muffins with my rice flour. They were pretty good, I admit.

Change is often neatly wrapped like the ill-fated granola bars in my kitchen. Facebook life events, polished photo albums and year-in-review posts obscure the inevitable moments of unabashed collapse, the ones that leave me not with an immediate epiphany or life lesson but a pile of cruelly tempting unopened carbs.

I deleted the recipes and donated the remnants of my lifelong love affair with gluten. I almost chucked a gluten-free muffin at the TV when bread-loving Oprah mocked me during a rerun of “Frasier.” Change, unwrapped, is often ugly and graceless and for me, gluten-free.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *