Questions exploded in my head like fireworks and I spent the next 24 hours learning everything I could about celiac. Here’s what rose to the surface:
*Celiac disease is a genetic autoimmune disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food.
*An estimated 1 in 133 Americans, or about 1% of the population, has celiac disease.
*Celiac disease can lead to a number of other disorders including infertility, reduced bone density, neurological disorders, some cancers, and other autoimmune diseases.
*A 100% gluten-free diet is the only existing treatment for celiac today.
It was when I started reading all of the different ways that celiac can present that I clapped a hand to my forehead: “Gallopin’ Gorgons” of course I have celiac. It was a magical moment that should have been obvious the whole time. (Yer a wizard Harry..) I just thought everyone needed a mint to settle their upset stomach after every meal. For years spearmint gum and I have gone together like milk & cookies…peanut butter & jelly…Ron & Hermione. One has not been without the other for as long as I can remember. Blimey.
Now I needed to wrap my head around this gastroenterologist/endoscopy thing. When my blood markers were quadruple that of the normal range, why did I need sedation and a biopsy to tell me what I already knew? The Sorting Hat had seemingly already spoken.
As I read to my 6th graders the next day I couldn’t help but feel the words were speaking directly to me:
Harry (I) didn’t feel brave or quick-witted or any of it at the moment. If only the hat had mentioned a house for people who felt a bit queasy, that would have been the one for him (me).
Surely there was a spell to skip over the unpleasantries of what I had to do next.. But J.K. Rowling was quick to remind me:
We do not need magic to transform our world; we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already.