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I hate having to be gluten-free and living the gluten-free life. It’s a necessary evil, a requirement to stay healthy, and not a choice for me. It is with me all day and everyday, for the rest of my life, and every meal can be a stress-filled event as I do my best to make sure that during preparation and eating I don’t contaminate my food. I’m certainly not one of those people who have embraced the gluten-free life, love it, and see it as a blessing. While being gluten-free has brought improvements in my health, I feel that those improvements have come at a steep price. I’ve had to work very hard to get where I am today, and I still don’t feel that I’m where I should be. I feel like I’ve had to change, sacrifice, and give up a lot, including many basic things that people just do without thinking and take for granted, like going out to eat or sharing treats with family and friends. The gluten-free life has brought many inconveniences and difficulties into my life. It’s been very frustrating and discouraging making all the necessary changes in order to stay well. It seems I get things wrong and make mistakes much more often than I get things right. Since I was not very sick other than some bothersome symptoms prior to going gluten-free, my life at that point in some ways seems better than it does now, and at times I long for my old life. Things seemed so simple, so easy, then. If I thought I could go back to my prior life, back to eating gluten, and keep my health, I would do so in a heartbeat.

Hate is not really considered a healthy emotional response, but for me, it’s what’s real and how I really feel inside. I accept these feelings as part of who I am in the gluten-free life and do not feel guilty for feeling the way I do. I could never see myself coming to embrace and love the gluten-free life, but I don’t think I have to do so in order to live it and survive through it. What’s of paramount importance is my health. I would never want to do something that I know would cause massive harm to my body, and I know that eating gluten, even getting traces through cross-contamination, will harm me. I’m willing to make the necessary changes in order to safeguard my health and stay well, even if those changes are unwelcome or undesirable. I can live the gluten-free life, even though I absolutely despise having to do so, if it means I can improve my health and heal my body. I don’t let the gluten-free life, or my feelings for it, prevent me from living my life. Whatever emotions I feel, even negative ones like hate, can be healthy as long as those emotions are true to who I am and that I don’t let them interfere with what I need to do to protect my health and live my life.

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