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Well I Finally Did It
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I haven't been to a restaurant to eat in a long time. I had been glutened by two of the best restaurants in my city (one a 5 star place!) trying to eat out a few years ago so with the exception of a couple of takeouts from PF Changs over the last 6 years or so I have avoided trying anyplace else.

Well my DS is leaving for an out of state school next week and I really wanted to take him out to dinner. We have a pretty new place in town that is upscale and advertises gluten free food. We went last night. I am so glad I did. When I first looked at the menu I was like oh no! Everything had all these fancy sauces and there was no chance of the plain and boring broiled fish with baked potato that I figured I would order to be safe. The wait staff was fantastic though and really knowledgeable and even checked to make sure there was no soy. They even had 'homemade' gluten-free rolls. I did have broiled fish, snapper, but it was served on the best beans and greens I have had since I made them myelf and basil sauce. It was excellent.

It definately was not an 'inexpensive' meal but it was excellent. I will definately be trying this eating out more often now. Such a world of difference from just a few years ago.

Lesson I learned, talk to that wait staff before I go. If they sound confident that they can feed me safely I will go without fear. Perhaps I will even eat at my DD's wedding instead of just staring at my plate.

If your in the Finger Lakes area check out Halsey's in Geneva. Nice dining and they also do gluten free pizza if your not into something fancy. Don't expect to be able to get a burger though.

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whoo hooo for you! how great it was for you to be able to "go for it" ... and without incident! i'm happy to hear you had a lovely meal with your DS. :) and since you posted, i'd like to say thanks for being so kind and helpful to everyone (myself included) here with giving advice and encouragement. we have a pf changs not too far from here ... i may have to check it out now. if YOU think its safe, it must be! lol :)

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Wow Ravenwood--I'm so happy that you were able to venture out for a meal and that you had such a great experience! :D

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What a joy that must have been for you :D

I am soooo happy that you had that wonderful experience!!

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whoo hooo for you! how great it was for you to be able to "go for it" ... and without incident! i'm happy to hear you had a lovely meal with your DS. :) and since you posted, i'd like to say thanks for being so kind and helpful to everyone (myself included) here with giving advice and encouragement. we have a pf changs not too far from here ... i may have to check it out now. if YOU think its safe, it must be! lol :)

Yes do check them out. I do have to say I only have had their food two or three times, I didn't get glutened but I did get soyed. However it was with take out and I didn't ask them about the soy. Just talk to the waitstaff first, with them being a big chain type place not all may be as good as the one near me.

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Yea it was a big step for me. I'm soooo happy it was a good experience. It was a big step for me toward feeling like I am finally conquering this darn PTSD. My shrink will be really pleased I finally did it. :D

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I have had LOTS of positive experiences at restaurants. There are MANY places out there that are very willing to accommodate you. I stick to the ones that have gluten-free menus, because then I know that they most likely know what they are talking about and have been trained on it. Most of the gluten-free menus I've seen have been created in conjunction with the gluten intolerance group, so you know they know what we can have (Now, gluten is the only thing I can't have, I don't have multiple things to avoid). I have only gotten sick ONE time, and that was at a restaurant that DID NOT have a gluten-free menu, but assured me they could make me something safe. I don't go to restaurants without a gluten-free menu anymore. There are plenty of choices, so why risk it?! I have only been gluten-free since April, but from talking to people it is very apparent that restaurants have changed A LOT even over the past few years. If nothing else, I guess I diagnosed at a good time with the gluten-free grocery food and restaurants with more awareness.

Happy to hear you had a great experience!

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BRAVO!

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So glad you ventured out! Eating out can always be scary but like you said, if you find a knowledgeable staff that can make you feel confident, then you can relax and have a good time and focus on conversation and having a good time instead of food.

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That's great news!!! All these mini- and major-steps on the recovery pathway. :)

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That's wonderful - I'm so glad you had a lovely time!

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YEAH!! :D

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I have been using the forum for several months now- searching for this and that and your name always pops up with helpful and kind insights. It is so nice to hear that things are getting better for you as it seems you have helped many other people get better. Cheers to many more dinners and milestones.

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And what a memorable experience that must have been for your son! A great send off!

I'm so glad that gluten-free is becoming an option throughout the U.S. My husband is doing some work right now in the U.K., and he says that all of the food is labeled there if it has gluten or doesn't. I hope we'll see that someday here!

I'm so happy for you, Ravenwoodglass!!!

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Congratulations! You should be proud, and I hope you can enjoy DD's wedding.

~Laura

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Well done, so glad you had a great experience!

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Thanks guys. I am so glad that the US is finally getting more Celiac savvy. I have always hoped that my struggles might help others. I never could have done this if I hadn't taken that first very hard step a year and half ago and sought out a good therapist and psychologist. I know there are a few of us who struggle with the fears that this disease brings along with the severe physical reactions. Although my issues come from much more than just the Celiac my reactions play a big part in them. We can overcome so much. My son says I am the strongest person he knows but I sure didn't feel that way a year ago. The support of the wonderful folks on this board help so much but sometimes we need to get that little bit of extra help with these struggles. I am so glad I finally did have the strength to get that help, even though it took me 7 years to admit I needed it, and I hope the others who feel 'locked in a box' by this disease and it's reactions find the strength to do the same.

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You go! Good for you! My first eating out experience was very scary. I was so paranoid, and kept "checking myself" internally with every bite I ate. As the meal continued however, I still felt good! It was so exciting!

I now hit In-And-Out Burger frequently to get their protein style burger and dedicated fryer french friend. As far as sit down places are concerned, I'm in love with Outback Steakhouse. They have a special menu, and seemed to know their stuff!

Isn't it exciting to feel a little bit "normal"? Congrats!

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Good for you! I didn't even wait that long to try eating out, but I paid for it by getting glutened several times even at places with gluten free menus. Once I finally found a place that is consistently safe my husband wanted to go there every week! I had to convince him that we will go on special occasions or when I don't feel like cooking. I'm afraid to push my luck by eating out too often, but there really is a good variety now (at least if you live near a city).

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Ravenwoodglass, your posts have made a big difference to me. And I'm sure that's true for many people on this board. You often have just the right thing to say - sometimes comforting, and other times honest (when that's needed). I think that often the people who have struggled the most are the most qualified to support others on similar journeys.

I'm glad good things are coming back at you.

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Ravenwoodglass, your posts have made a big difference to me. And I'm sure that's true for many people on this board. You often have just the right thing to say - sometimes comforting, and other times honest (when that's needed). I think that often the people who have struggled the most are the most qualified to support others on similar journeys.

I'm glad good things are coming back at you.

Yes, what lucia said! Very true.

I went to Olive Garden for my dad's birthday the other night. They have a gluten-free menu, and our server was great. i asked him about cross contamination. He asked how bad my "allergy" was, and when I told him that any gluten would "ravage my intestine," he was extremely helpful and reassuring! :P I think I may have to keep using that phrase... And I did appear to come out unscathed, as well.

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You are an inspiration to us all!

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Congratulations Ravenwoodglass! I'm so glad you took the plunge.

We went to PF Changs last night and it was so good and yummy! Totally without fear of being glutened and had a great time with friends. Just like before diagnosis!

Doing the happy dance for you and your family!! :D

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That's great RWG! kind of like opening a new door. Things are getting better for us. And there may be more of us to enjoy the results too! Probably a lot more people will be diagnosed now that the press has taken some interest in celiac disease. It's all good! :-)

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Yay! Good going... someday I may too eat at a restaurant again... one step at a time. Thanks for blazing a trail.. helps to hear what works and what doesn't.

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