Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Sweet Faces of Celiac Disease: Meet Lucie

Lucie is 14 years old and was diagnosed with celiac disease when she was 8 years old. 

What symptoms was your child having before being diagnosed?

Severe constipation.  After months of her pediatrician ignoring the cause and attempting to only treat the symptom, I decided to take her to a specialist. He told us within about two minutes of coming into the exam room that he suspected celiac and would start the testing process. We were very lucky - from the time we first took her to the pediatrician to her final endoscopy confirmed diagnosis was only three months.

Any other family members diagnosed with celiac disease?

I have a great aunt (my daughter's great-great aunt) that was diagnosed many years ago. We thought she was a crazy old lady when she brought her own food to family gatherings.  I still find it funny that I shook my head at her bringing her own food to my sister in law's wedding shower in 2008 - and only three years later I was thrown head first into understanding her world a little better.

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

It's tough on her socially now that she's moving into high school, but I think she handles it better than I do. For example, her middle school had an 8th grade semi formal dance in May and I found out after the fact that they served pizza. And they didn't accommodate her.  She takes that kind of thing in stride, I do not.

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

Learn everything you can, be an advocate for your child, but also be positive - focus on what they CAN eat rather than what they can't.

Lucie, what a pretty name! You look so healthy and happy. I hope you are feeling much better and keep embracing your gluten-free lifestyle. I know the social aspect can be difficult. Keep her head held high and think positive, even when difficult situations arise. You got this kiddo! Enjoy the rest of your summer! 

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