THREE. TRES. TROIS. DREI.
I started this blog on August 1, 2007, after being gluten free all summer. IT HAS BEEN THREE YEARS SINCE I INTENTIONALLY INGESTED GLUTEN PRODUCTS. My dedication was to bring souther GF adaptations to the gluten free world -- the GF Paula Deen. Sometimes I vented, sometimes I laughed and cried. But I have made a lot of friends over the past three years, and I mark this anniversary this weekend with a few affirmations, facts, and updates for the future.
1. I was inspired by blog by Shauna James Ahern and Karina Allrich. I still find them most compelling. I begged both of them to add my to their blog roll. I think Karina did. At first I begged a lot to be added. My first GF bud was Ginger of the North, Fresh Ginger, and Karen Blue, Avoiding Milk protein. I grew. We all grew. I am thrilled to meet Monday my GF Brother from another Mother, GF Steve and the Artist. Oh joy. It is a dream come true. I'll meet so many GF friends in Denver, and have a reunion with a dear cousin in Boulder. This weekend will be a celebration of this blog.
For the record, I miss Krystal Hamburgers (just the slimy bread and beef juice steamed in stuff). I miss my favorite meal at The Varsity. (thre Chili Dogs walking, all the way, with pepper, onions and mustard (no ketchup), two onion rings orders) , a Big O with a refill or two, and a peach and apple pie. No variations.) And I'd like to plow through a dozen Krispy Kreme originals when the hot light is on.
And I'd love a GF egg roll, for the record. And some GF dim sum.
2, My blog has changed and morphed with my medical conditions, but I have ostensibly not changed. I am a gluten-free woman in her 50s with diabetes. I haven't tried to remake myself into something. I've stayed true to my original mission, I think. It is my intention to continue this, but it has not been easy this summer with sickness, blindness and moving. Sometimes, all I see is a blur. Sometimes, I have it at 200 points.
But I covert your considered support. And I love you my GF friends. You know who you are. I hope.
3. I tried to syndicate through BlogHer, a reputable organization, but it wasn't for me.I started and retired a food blog called Ging Recommends, but now I can go back to doing what I want here. I owe a few people reviews for great products I've nibbled on this summer.
I now report local GF news (well, haven't much lately) for Examiner.Com too. I hope after August 10 this will get back up and running. In fact, I apologize to a few companies -- I owe you. I want to write about Canyon Ranch Buns, about Enjoy Life Trail Mix, and Bakery on Main products. I want to write about GF Adventure in NYC with the brilliant Jill Brack from Glow Gluten Free. I need a few vents.
A huge loss is that I can eat GF produced products in MINIMAL sparing amounts. But sometimes a girl's gotta live. A little.
5. As you know, I've been through some sickness here over the years-- first I had to give up sugar, had my ovaries out, thought I had cancer, then the whole insulin thing. Now I'm fighting a horrible autoimmune disorder (4 out of 5 doctors agree) called Giant Cell Arteritis. Since March 28 I've gone blind in my right eye. The future is squinty. I am doing all I can to fight the ravages of Prednisone (my medication,) of which I am highly intolerant. I look like Jabba the Hut. I have gained 35 pounds in a year. I have moon face and look like Quagmire from Family Guy. Prednisone has suppressed and destroyed my autoimmune system. I am going back and forth to the Mayo Clinic treatment. Thanks for my SFAM/BFF Janet for taking me there. Thanks to my Daddy and Mary for their spiritual and financial support. And thanks to my friends for unlimited moral support. XOXO
Here is really what I look like now. I can't get used to the mumps-like swelling. It hurts. It makes me ugly. I am not pleased. I'm also a little plus bitchy. I rely on my iPhone because it is easier to read. Don't judge me, students.
Most of all, I am sicker than almost everyone thinks I am. Doctors -- multiple doctors -- are using words like "Medical Leave." I am MUCH sicker than I thought. And than I've let on. And yes, I prepared two houses for a sale and move-in, fighting debilitating migraines and face swelling and soaring sugars and swelling all the time. It had to be done right. I was the woman for the job. Bless all who helped in any way. I hope I'll find respite in the nest we've created in Milledgeville. God Bless Nick Miller for all his help.
I am being treated at the Mayo Clinic and in Atlanta (aggressively) and I hope we'll soon have a treatment that won't poison my system and kill me. Or make me go blind in the left eye.
I am petrified every time I get a headache that I will lose that vision. I'm being treated with Avastin and Laser Surgery in the left eye to keep it sharp as possible. I am a pin cushion of Insulin shots.
My right vision will never come back. I'm blind in one eye. I can walk only about 15 minutes with sitting down, my back locking down. In spite of cherry Internet Chatter, it is a long-term disease with a treatment of 4-6 years,
I am blessed to have Dr. Katy Gustavson-Roberts at the help of my care. She saves my life every day. And Karen her nurse is a Godsend. So is Dr. Charles McQuaig.
But my classes will be challenge to me. Fo sho. I hope to continue to do as much as I can until I am forced to say No Mas.
6. The best thing that ever happened to me was having my son Jeffrey. On the heels of that was marrying my soul mate, Sweet Randy, in 2005. I am blessed and happy that he has successfully naviagted a full retirement from USF and now lives full time in our Milledgeville Manse, aka El Casa Del Whack. The goat boy adores him. I adore him even if he can't figure out how to use a vacuum cleaner. Yet.
He has a great retiree double dip job teaching at GSU in August. We sold the money pit.
We are together under the same comfortable roof the first time after seven years (almost to the date). It is our dream come true.
I am blessed.
My hope for the next year of this blog is growth, knowledge, change, and a continued list of things good for the gluten-free dieter. I will continue, I hope, to be just Ging.
And I thank you for caring and joining me along the way.
For tonight, I send, Much Love.
I covet you peace and prayers. And I hope I can repay the love some day.