Anquish Over Gluten Free Easter
- By Deana Huneke
- Published 04/25/2011
I am the mother of a beautiful and perfect five year old little girl named Kaia. Kaia is perfect in every way, from her celiac disease multiple allergies to all dairy, soy, beef cherries, latex, adhesives, barium and bee venom to her g tube and nissen fundolplication. As hard as it gets some days one look at my beautiful ittle girl and all is right in the world.
Growing up, the Easter Bunny never brought a lot of candy he always seemed to bring the one thing we were “dying” to have, so when it came time for the Easter Bunny to start visiting my little girl, it only seemed right to have a little candy and toys to make up for the lack of candy. Kaia has been dairy free since she was 6 months old so Easter has always been a little bittersweet for her (me really). I have never found (at least one I can afford) a Kaia friendly chocolate Easter Bunny.
Kaia’s Easter Basket has always consisted of little toys, coloring books, latex free markers and crayons (Crayola is cross contaminated), socks, bubbles, summer play toys and whatever Kaia just couldn’t live without that year.
Fast forward to Easter 2011. This year I had to read for that one extra ingredient—wheat/gluten. As I started to head to my tried and true candies for her, they were quickly slipping away. Twizzler—the second ingredient is wheat flour!! Argh! Nope that jelly bean has gluten, that one two, oh that chocolate is gluten free, but no it has dairy, this went on and on. The more aggravated I got, it seemed the less candy she could have. It seemed all I could find that was Kaia friendly was dum dum suckers, Double Bubble, and Swedish Fish and Eggs. I had my old standby her Enjoy Life Candy bars, but I wanted something special.
The more I got read ingredients the madder I got, then it hit me---Kaia doesn’t miss what she has never had. The worst part of going gluten free was taking pop tarts away and she handled that like a trooper. I was getting upset, not because Kaia wouldn’t have an Easter Basket, I was getting upset because I was again hit in the face that my daughter is different, however she rarely notices she is different.
A couple minutes of self pity and I moved forward. Kaia had the Easter basket of her dreams with everything she wanted—and in the end I had a huge smile on my face—all because my beautiful little girl was happy--really happy.
As always, Celiac.com welcomes your comments (see below).