This was my first Thanksgiving holiday where I didn't stuff my face with rolls, slices of pie, and a plateful of Macaroni and cheese. To my surprise it felt great, I didn’t leave the table feeling immediately sick or pass out on the couch shortly after. I'm not going to lie and say it wasn't hard and tempting. I will say I got through my first holiday dinner with the assistance of some great family and friends.
I was invited to a "Friendsgiving" that was held the weekend before Thanksgiving. Everyone that was invited was asked to bring one dish to the event. The first thought that came across my mind was "What if I'm not able to eat anything there?" I was very nervous about this because I was unsure of what everyone was bringing and I didn't want to be a damper on the party if I couldn't eat anything. However, I put the negative thoughts to the side and decided that I truly wanted to go and catch up with some old friends. I made a simple dish using my slow cooker called Wild Rice Stuffing with Cranberries and Almonds.I was sure to make a large amount, in case it was the only thing I could eat. When I arrived to the party I was shocked by how many of my friends remembered my gluten allergy and even altered their recipes so I could enjoy the dish as well. There were plenty of naturally gluten free foods as well such as turkey, fruits and vegetables, and of course my absolute favorite potatoes. There were so many tasty options there for me and I was thankful my friends took the time out to cater to my allergies and made sure I was able to enjoy a good meal. We had such a fun time catching up and cracking jokes, I was glad I didn’t let my allergy stop me from going. Having my friends support that day meant the world to me.
Unfortunately this was my year to work on Thanksgiving day but luckily I was only scheduled to work until 5 PM. Which was great because one of my close friends invited me over to her home to enjoy Thanksgiving with her and her family that evening. Everyone there waited for me to arrive before they started eating which I thought was very nice of them to do. My friend and her father had been cooking all day and it smelt so good in her home. I was anxious to see what was available. She made me my own Thanksgiving! She whipped up mashed potatoes which were gluten-free and dairy free, gluten-free Macaroni and cheese, gluten-free and soy free Chicken wings, and her father made me my own separate batch of collard greens that was soy free as well! Everything tasted amazing and I couldn't believe all the hard work they put into making me my own separate dishes for Thanksgiving. I am beyond grateful for the supportive friends that I have. My first gluten-free Thanksgiving was such a success. I look back and reflect on how lucky and blessed I am.
November was a very special month for me. This month also marked 6 months gluten-free since my diagnosis. What a difference it has made. By taking better care of my body and watching what I eat I have maintained my goal weight, my doctor has lowered my blood pressure medication with a potential of getting of the medication next year, as well as less bloating, headaches, and fatigue. The list goes on of all the great things I have accomplished just in the matter of 6 months! So thankful for the supportive people behind me, excited to see what the future holds for me as I continue my gluten-free journey.