(Gluten-Free Family Life) Interview with 10 year-old Celiac
Elizabeth Carroll's daughter, age 4
February 28, 2013
What a wonderful idea Elizabeth Barbone had when she suggested I interview my own daughter, who is ten, for her perspective on the gluten-free diet and celiac disease. I have written about our family and our gluten-free diets, but there is nothing like a child's own words.
My daughter was diagnosed with celiac disease at age three, so she does not remember much about her gluten-eating days. Here are her responses to my questions:
What is your favorite food?
Pizza, all types (of course gluten-free).
What is your favorite place to go out to eat?
Traverso's (a local family-run restaurant with a fabulous gluten-free menu, previously mentioned in a column here).
Why is this your favorite?
Because of the variety of gluten-free items to order.
What is the best thing we make at home?
I meant, what is the best meal we make at home?
Boxed macaroni and cheese and hot dogs. (Note from Interviewer/Mom: This does not say much for her mother's cooking, does it?!)
Describe one of the most difficult situations you have faced involving food and the gluten-free diet:
The first one was when I was still three and the teacher accidently gave me a gluten-containing snack at preschool (and then remembered and had me spit it out).
(Interviewer / Mom note: Gluten-free snack was sent and was not given).
The second was recently when my sport team went out to a restaurant to celebrate the end of the season. My mom set up the party and ordered gluten-containing pizzas for all and gluten-free for me and my Dad. She ordered vanilla ice cream for dessert for all the kids. At the restaurant, one of the Moms decided to order several cookie cakes for the tables and all the kids ate those and not the ice cream. I felt badly that I couldn't eat them.
Describe one of the best situations you have been in regarding foods and eating with friends:
I went to a birthday party at my friend's house and her Mom made gluten-free cupcakes for everyone at the party, so I didn't have to eat a different one.
What advice do you have to offer to other kids on the gluten-free diet?
It gets easier as you get older.
What worries do you have about celiac disease and the gluten-free diet?
I worry that when I am older and out of college, that I won't be able to afford the higher cost of many gluten-free foods.
What are your hopes for the future, regarding celiac disease?
I hope they find a cure.
Note from Elizabeth Carroll:
I will let my sweet daughter's words speak for themself. I will just add, regarding her last comment, that the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center has added the motto “From Care to Cure” and set the goal to cure celiac disease by 2026.
Let us all, if we are able, support this center, and other research centers, in their efforts to understand and cure this condition. While we can make the gluten-free diet very delicious, there would be nothing better than a cure, as many endure debilitating side effects and other related conditions stemming from celiac disease.
About the Author:
Elizabeth Carroll is a wife and mother of three living in the suburbs of Chicago. She has been preparing gluten-free foods for her family, two of whom are eat exclusively gluten-free, since 2004. Before staying home with her children, she worked in human resources consulting.
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