Gerry is one of Calendar Men and his nightmare lasted over 30 years. Through heart attacks and surgeries, him and his wife both thought he was not going to make it. Finally, she figured it out and he was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. After decades of pain, he can now take his life back and start living again. Gerry has entered a holistic 12 week program to get his life back on track and I will be updating you on how he is doing.
Meet Gerry Doherty…
I started getting acute sickness around 1979-81 timeframe. I figured out sometime in the latter 90 s that when I ate pizza I became violently ill. In the spring of 2008 I had become chronically ill. There were Sunday’s I could not get out of bed. (Beer Saturday’s). I was doing a lot of business travel and getting sick more often with business dinner’s(bread).
I remember I was on an evening flight to Providence RI and I was thinking, I couldn’t care less if the plane crashed, I had become so chronically ill. It was that day my wife happened to have an add-on patient (she is a breast imaging specialist at the Cleveland clinic) who told her she had Celiac Disease, her symptoms were my symptoms. God does put people in your path at the time you most need them. Linda went home, researched the internet, called me in RI and said she had figured it out.
My family doctor, at that time, wasn’t familiar with Celiac Disease. Gluten-free food availability and restaurant options were a tenth of what they are today. The chronic condition damaged my body to the point that I had lost most of 2011. Instead, I was bedridden after 3 surgeries and spent many hours with a towel stuffed in my mouth so no one would hear my screams of pain. I never knew I could scream. It was a year of pure agony. My wife recently confided that she had resolved herself to the fact that I may not survive, it was that bad.
My oldest son was diagnosed with Celiac 2 years ago, although I knew for years, he was a classic case.
People just don’t get it, they think it’s ok to pick off the croutons like it’s no big deal or accuse you of wanting attention. The body does suffer directly and indirectly with gluten consumption, either way mine is damaged.
I just started a very interesting and demanding 12 week program at the Cleveland clinic for patients who have had heart attacks and want to change from the inside out. In addition to exercise, yoga, meditation (75 minutes a day required), mental health, there’s a nutrition and cooking component. I can now only eat gluten-free, low-fat, plant-based food, sans any kind of cooking oil. There are very specific daily food requirements. This is a program to holistically reverse heart disease.
Kirsten, this is more information than I usually share. I so much appreciate your passion in getting the message out. I wish your site was available 8 years ago. You are doing a wonderful service and God bless you for it. It’s nice to communicate with a like spirit who shares the same malady and passion to educate others.
Thank you Gerry for taking the time and sharing your story. Gerry’s battle was a long one that spanned decades, luckily he was finally diagnosed and is now embracing a new healthy lifestyle under a doctor’s care. Gerry and his wife are no longer resolved with the fact that he might die, they can instead celebrate his life, living and thrive for many years to come.
*If you would like to share your story, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org