I am not coeliac.
After hearing these results, I genuinely wanted to – was going to – take my own life. I had staked so much on it, expected it, believed it, never really considered that I might not be. Gluten was the problem – wasn’t it? Milk then – surely? And yet the week before the endoscopy I spent binging on crackers and cream cheese, my symptoms actually improved somewhat. The week of my endoscopy, I spent binging on granola mixed with yoghurt and I started to sweat, my hives burst out worse than ever and I would not stop itching. Dairy then – it must be.
Then I remembered. The oat cakes. The oat milk. The flapjacks, both homemade and shop-bought. Even gluten-free hobnobs and oats. Oats. Every instance in which I consumed one of these products, my symptoms included stomach cramps, nausea, diarrhoea and extreme eczema. One of the symptoms is ‘redness around the mouth’; ever since I was very small, I have had an “unexplainable” redness around my mouth because we had porridge all the time. Another sign of an oat allergy is “inflamed skin” with “intolerable itching”, “sleeping issues” and “flushing of the skin”. Asthma – it can cause asthma, which I have been suffering from for as long as I can remember.
The list goes on and on and it makes the most sense. It’s the only thing that seems to make sense. I have no damaged gut to recover, it’s all dermatological.
I had to walk home from the hospital this afternoon – a journey of nearly two miles – in the literally freezing cold, reawakening the old injury in my right hip and giving me a blister on the sole of my left foot. I have also endured two bouts of hiccoughing, much to my annoyance.
Why is it that I so readily believe in and accept the existence of vampires, werewolves and faeries?
I am continually of the opinion that perhaps I should forfeit my college education this year, considering how much I have missed since falling so ill, and try again another year when I am in better health.