Cracking jokes in the face of misery


Food is a big deal over here in Devereauxland, so being told you can’t have something yummy is bound to bring out some strong emotions.

Young Master7 was diagnosed Celiac a few weeks ago – this on top of his peanut allergy and sensitivity to fish. He is not very happy and there has been a lot of ‘why me?’ going on. I empathize with my little man’s plight – the things we can’t have seem to illicit the greatest desire. Like when Tracey and I crawl into bed and she tells me in no uncertain terms I can’t have what I want and to go the hell to sleep. It’s upsetting.

Master7 has always been very good with his allergies – when given any food he religiously asks if it has peanuts. He wouldn’t even feed the dolphins at Tin Can Bay because it meant touching a fish (we’ve tried to explain this wouldn’t be an issue but he won’t have a bar of it).

So we’ve allocated a special draw full of gluten free snacks. This is now the number one, favourite spot in the whole kitchen for pretty much the whole family: full of apricot bites and cornchips and rice crackers and all sorts of goodies.

In some ways the whole house is switching to gluten free foods, such as breakfast cereals, to accommodate the latest curve ball life’s thrown at us. It’s a hassle, but Tracey and I figure there’s worse stuff out there so we don’t complain too much.

Yesterday, completely against type, I messed up. I needed to buy some morning tea for a meeting and picked up a couple of sausage rolls as well to share with the kids before school. When I realized my mistake I thought things would be okay because I could pull out a snack from the drawer for Master7 so everyone would have something special. Great theory.

Shortly after arriving home I found Master7 on his bed sobbing and saying things like, “This sucks!” and “Why me?” Hot dogs and meat pies are fine, but it seems sausage rolls cross some sort of line.

We chatted for a few minutes but he wasn’t really coming around. The other kids had come into the room with me to offer their support as well, which was good because it took Miss8 to bring him out of his funk.

“I hate it! Why me?” he told me while I knelt down beside the bed to chat. It was important we got through this quickly because school was to start in fifteen minutes and, just as importantly, I wanted my morning coffee.

So I’m chatting away, being all soothing and parenty.

“You never miss out, mate,” I told my son. “You might not always have the same stuff, but you’ll always have something just as good.” Suddenly I felt a cool draft creeping up my lower back, but for the sake of coffee I persevered with my child-whispering. “What would you like instead? Something awesome. Sausage rolls are out, but you can….what the hell is going on back there!?” I said, spinning around. The cool draft had spread even further up my back. Turns out Miss8 was standing behind me gingerly lifting my shirt.

Seems when I knelt down a hint of my plumber’s crack was peaking through and caught her attention.

“I just wanted to see how far it went,” said Miss8. She looked at her miserable brother. “It went a really long way.  Seriously, you gotta see this.” Her little joke brought the misery rocket safely back to earth. Next time he’s feeling upset about his new diet I’ll have to remember to loosen my belt and wear my pants at half mast.

Or I could simply avoid bringing home sausage rolls. Either way I guess.

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  • Poor little guy 🙁 I am so in love with my food that when I was pregnant I thought I was gonna die – all the usual restrictions plus gestational diabetes!
    I can only imagine how unfair it would feel for him having to always live with the disease.
    I am sure he will adapt and it’s great you’ve got Miss 8 to break the tension – hilarious!

    PS Keep an eye out – over the next week I’m going to be publishing a post in which I plug my favourite ‘dad’ blogs and I’m pretty sure you get a mention 😉

    • He says he misses Weatbix the most 🙁 But we’re actually getting through it okay. Bread was the biggest hurdle, but my local baker got us a bag of the bee’s knees in gluten free flour ($75 for only 12.5kg – at cost!) and I’ve been baking every couple of days for my little man. Best thing is we’re all eating better because a lot of it is fresh produce instead of processed.

      And cheers for proposing a plug, Kez – appreciate the vote of confidence 🙂 As you would know I share your posts from time to time – you do crack me up 😀

      And for anyone reading this the link to Kez’s blog, Awesomely Unprepared, is 🙂

  • You NEED to publish a book. You are absolutely hilarious, and there is a natural interest in a father’s perspective of parenthood. Maybe then you’d have to change your blog name to Big Family, Big Income 🙂

  • I got teary reading that and some of those were my exact words.
    My daughter is 6. She has nut anaphylaxis and was then diagnosed 1.5 years later at 4 years of age with coeliac disease and eoe.

    For the most part she copes extremely well, but we have been going through a rough patch these last few weeks where she has snuck foods that she should not have (gluten wise). Hopefully one day there will be a cure.

    Have you ever ordered from Choices Gluten Free? Every now and then we have a family hotdog night (we haven’t all gone gluten free) and I plan in advance and purchase hot dog rolls from Choices and then we use the Hans skinless franks.

  • poor kiddoe. We cook gluten free because my oldest son struggles with gluten intolerance. It is def getting easier to find good foods!
    I laughed until I cried over the plumbers crack story! love it!

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