Note: This is the latest in a series of posts about The Kid’s Celiac disease diagnosis. They will all be collected under the Gluten Schmuten category tag.
The one suggestion made by the nutritionist that seemed worthwhile was a book by Danna Korn. Kids with Celiac Disease: A Family Guide to Raising Happy, Healthy, Gluten-Free Children is out of print, but still readily available used from Amazon Marketplace and from libraries.
The Wife said that the book was helpful, particularly in the strategies for communicating with The Kid and others about the disease. To me, talking to a toddler about any disease above a booboo seems like a wasted enterprise. Apparently, I know nothing about appropriate communication with children.
Prior to this point, we have simply been telling The Kid that she could not have a croissant or her regular crackers because the doctor said that is what made her stomach hurt. It’s a strategy that worked and we went with it.
Korn’s book said that we should actually tell The Kid that she had Celiac disease and that she could not eat foods with wheat, barley or rye. The theory is that the more she hears it, the more comfortable she will be with it and not be scared of it. Also, she’s more likely to start telling others on her own about what she has and what it means, even though she has little idea. The thought is that toddlers will likely repeat anything they hear, so while the science of Celiac disease may escape her, the basic facts will come out in a coherent fashion (or as coherent as a toddler can get).
The Wife and The Kid had their heart-to-heart on Saturday morning. As mentioned previously, Saturday mornings had been filled with Starbucks and croissants. During the warm weather months when we go to the Central New York Regional Market, we would first stop at Starbucks for coffee and a “goosant” for The Kid.
This past Saturday when we pulled up to Starbucks, The Kid told The Wife she wanted a “goosant.” While I was inside, The Wife took Korn’s advice. Upon my return, The Kid explained to me that she had “Cee-lee-ats disease” and that she could not eat “wheat, bar-ree or why.”
And just like that, The Kid explained more about Celiac disease than any medical professional we have dealt with.