Thursday, June 15, 2017

Sweet Faces of Celiac Disease: Meet Peyton

Peyton is 13 years old and was diagnosed with celiac disease when she was 5 years old.

What symptoms was your child having before being diagnosed?

Constipation, horrible stomach aches.

Any other family members diagnosed with celiac disease?

Her Dad, once Peyton was diagnosed the Pediatric GI told us it was hereditary and that we needed to get tested.  After 38 years of misdiagnosis, being told he had IBS and lactose intolerance my husband learned he had celiac disease.

How has your child’s life changed since being diagnosed?

Peyton was diagnosed so young and quite some time ago, the gluten free diet is all she remembers.  Once she was diagnosed she took it upon herself to tell others.  In 1st grade she brought a book, the GF kid, to her class for the teacher to read to everyone.  I hoped this would help stop kids from touching her food or trying to give her food.  Each year this book became our routine.  In 6th grade she worked with her science teacher to do a presentation on celiac disease that work with the lesson on autoimmune disease.

What advice would you offer a parent who’s child was just diagnosed with celiac disease?

It's okay, it's not that your child can't it's your child will do it a little differently.  When a party invitation comes out, you will make calls, cook a GF version so what is being served, and send your child to a party to have fun with their friends.  Don't always make it about the food.  Find opportunities for you child to meet other kids with celiac disease.  We found a camp for kids with celiac disease that Peyton has gone to, she loves having the regular sleep-away camp experience and not worrying about the food or having to explain why she can't eat this.

Peyton, I'm so proud of you for teaching others at your school about celiac disease! You're a beautiful young lady with a bright future! And I'm so happy to hear that Dad was FINALLY diagnosed correctly after all those years. A blessing in disguise for sure!

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