Nothing makes me more aware of my differences than a dinner party. Smaller parties are ok. I can eat before and avoid the snack platter. No biggie. Dinner parties, even with family, are a whole new ballgame.
Family dinners are stressful. My family tries to understand but it is complicated. Quite often they go above and beyond when it comes to food prep, ingredients, and serving. However, they don’t understand completely and I don’t expect them to do so. I don’t let my guard down but I’m ok with that. It comes with the territory.
Throughout the cooking process and dinner I have a difficult time enjoying the moment because I’m watching the food. The tiniest crumb will make me ill for days. I don’t have a problem with dishes that aren’t gluten free but one absent-minded move with the spoon means disaster for me. I’m always having to watch to see who touched their regular bread with the butter knife and then stuck it back in the butter dish. Did that contaminated spoon just touch my safe dish? Did I miss something? Will I be sick for a week?
It’s easier when Jon is with me. He’s a second pair of eyes on the food. If something gets contaminated he’ll either point it out to me or grab the dish and scoop out the contaminated portion.
It’s difficult to watch people go out of their way for me and I’m still not ok with it.
I am sitting in a room at Jon’s parents’ house feeling totally useless. He is going out with friends tonight to play video games leaving me here with his parents. Which is fine.
Except they are having a party tonight for their friends.
Jon’s father has gone out of his way to make gluten free food tonight. He’s modified recipes, gotten special ingredients, etc. Except I totally cannot go to this party. Not because I’m sick but because eating gluten free is difficult enough when it is just family around. Now I have to do it in front of total strangers. I just can’t do that in front of strangers…especially alone.