"Celiac isn't a disability. It's a launching platform into new ability and competence."
Celiac Diagnosis Anniversary Post + Nuttzo Nut Butter Giveaway!
How can you travel "normally" -- gluten-free -- when you have celiac? When I recently explained some of the planning that goes into traveling, as a young professional, a grad student, and nutritionist with celiac disease, the amiable lady listening, bug-eyed, blurted out: CJ, ARE YOU NUTS?
This is my response:
Well, go ahead. be a nut. Or maybe...just take Nut along for the gluten-free ride.
I used to think I had two options: Go as a nut and enjoy it, or go as a nut and don't. But I have a third: go with a Nut, instead of as one.
Nut, the frantic worried voice, the feeling-defective-guilty, the future-tripper, the trigger-happy DOOMSDAY buddy...needs to take shot-gun, not driver's wheel.
Boiled down, that means accept what I can't change -- perhaps a worried fear-laced litany running through my brain included -- and change the things I can.
But what are those things? Half of Nut's fuel for his back-breaking, trip-tromping blare of worried chatter that ruins travel, and keeps me out of the moment, comes from knowing there are things I need to do for my own health and sanity, and not having taken the time to list them, choose them, and use them.
What then do you have power to change? Make a list. I always have a choice. If I choose to go, the things I can change are my responsibility -- I'll take the time and the necessary steps to be sure I can travel wisely, safely, and sanely (knowing I may take Nut, the worried-wonder in the back of my head, with me -- he just doesn't have to drive).
So if you're traveling with celiac disease or a severe food allergy, these are the practical steps to make it not just do-able, but enjoyable.
One thing to know first: are you on the road for work or for holiday?
IF YOU'RE TRAVELING FOR WORK: