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The problem with being a celiac and a hypochondriac is you don’t know whether you’ve accidentally ingested gluten, or whether you’ve contracted a deadly incurable disease.

I was exhausted and dizzy after walking the dog last night. My mind immediately went back to the conversation my friends and I had about skin cancer. I checked my moles and freckles. Then I worried I couldn’t see them all.

When I got dizzy at the breakfast table this morning, I was certain I had developed insomnia during the night. I went back to bed and slept for three hours.

When I arose from the nap exhausted, and with pain in my lungs, I thought about how I felt when I had pneumonia three years ago. Was it coincidence I had become ill right after our trip to the Blooming Baroque Gardens in Ludwigsburg?  Can community-acquired pneumonia actually be acquired from the same community twice?

Part of this tendency towards hypochondriacism might be from those years of feeling generally unwell but not knowing why. It was only a year ago my life totally changed when I dropped gluten like a hot-cake.

The easy part of celiac disease is avoiding foods containing gluten. The hard part is knowing whether something has been cross-contaminated. It sounds like something only a hypochondriac would come up with, but I can tell when my husband has used the wrong pan or spatula for cooking. Our old Teflon pans, with the gluten-concealing scratches, are verboten for me.

People ask me all the time: “What happens if you eat gluten?” It depends on how much gluten I’ve consumed and what type. Sometimes I have headaches or nausea. Usually, I feel like I’ve been bingeing on thumbtacks. Other times I look five months pregnant. Large amounts of gluten make me feel like someone slipped Oxycontin into my Coke. It just depends.

I’ve been thinking about what I ate yesterday to determine if I’ve been “glutened” (it is a verb in our house), or if I’m just tired from the marathon training. It doesn’t seem possible I’m overtraining, since I reduced my mileage this week to begin my official training schedule.

Regardless of the cause of today’s medical mystery, my body is telling me to rest; and I am listening. I was supposed to run an easy two miles today, but I took a nap instead.

Hopefully tomorrow I will wake up cured. I would hate to miss another morning run.


Miles: Tuesday 0, Wednesday 4, Thursday 0

Terrain & Wildlife: I found a new route through the fields. I watched the sun rise as the deer bounded through the hills. I tried to take a picture, but the iPhone can’t possibly do the scene justice.

Weather: it’s been sunny and in the 60s to 70s. I ran at 5am on Weds, so the temp was perfect for running.


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