Travelling with MdDS and Food Allergies/Intolerance: Introduction

I'm going to apologize now, because this is going to be a lengthy, wordy post. Without a whole lot of background information, the details in the coming posts might not make much sense. I tend not to talk much about myself here, preferring to share recipes and keep things simple, but somehow it seems important this time.

Several months ago, my husband received a call at work letting him know that he had earned a trip for two. The destination? Europe. A five-night cruise on the Mediterranean, more specifically. He did his husbandly duties and asked a few questions, and then it was time to let me know.

I * know* he dreaded that phone call. It was a pretty darned exciting thing, finding out he'd received a free vacation, no? So why the dread?

Me. And my anxiety... situation. You see, I try to maintain a calm on the surface. On the inside, however, I'm a bit of a mess. There are several factors, and believe me when I say this is something I'm working on. Regardless, three big things rushed to mind when he called me that day:

First, this food stuff, while fun and delightfully challenging to my creative brain, isn't so fun when I cannot be in control of preparation. We very, VERY rarely eat away from home. When we eat with family, I hang around the kitchen with a watchful eye, and I ask a lot of questions. Usually several times. The meal comes together, we make jokes about my neuroses, and nobody (ME!) gets sick. I can't guarantee the same success in a restaurant or similar setting, though, and that intimidates me to no end.

Second, I've got a little thing called Mal de Debarquement Syndrome. It started almost 18 months ago, and I've yet to rid myself of the awful symptoms. Travelling was a terrifying prospect, and quite honestly, one that brought me to tears. More on that later.

I also needed to come to grips with never having been away from my little guy before. This one was hardest for my mama-heart, but honestly, it was also the easiest to overcome. I've surprised a lot of people {myself included!} with just how 'hippy-dippy, crunchy-granola' I've become since entering mommyhood, and I've got some pretty fierce opinions about the fact that, for our family, parenting is a full-time commitment. Nighttime, sick time, vacation time. We're a family, and we stick together. I know there are others out there who will disagree with me, and that's fine. What works for our family may not work for yours. Anyway, while I would have preferred to have him with us, we did all survive. Minimal tears were shed, and he thoroughly enjoyed a good spoiling by those who love him.

Flashing back to that phone call, I cried, hard, as I stood in my kitchen and fretted over everything that could possibly go wrong.

I fretted and worried and planned for the next five months.

In the end, I was successful. Of course everyone else knew I'd be ok--but I didn't. Things weren't perfect, but they were good enough. I spent some much-needed time with my always-at-work hubby, snapped some great new pictures, and learned a lot about how to eat in funky situations.

Stick around for the posts that will follow this one. I've got lots to share about cruising with food issues, some tips and tricks that I will keep with me for next time, and of course pictures. Lots and lots of pictures!

I'd love to invite you to post questions here on this post that I might be able to include in the rest of the series. What do you want to know about travelling with food allergies/intolerance? Do I have any fellow MdDS readers??

Continue reading this series {will be updated as posts are added}:
My post on Flying
Pictures... Barcelona and RCI's Liberty of the Seas, Cannes, France, Pisa, Italy, Rome, Italy
My first post on Cruising
My second post on Cruising
My final thoughts, plus some Q&A

1 comment:

  1. What a phone call. I think I'd have the same trepidations, but from a slightly altered POV.
    1) I've worked in commercial kitchens, and eating out is scary. Maybe it's psychosomatic, but outside food always gives me trouble.
    2) I have the same little thing, only I'm just past 5 years with mine.
    3) Leaving behind the little ones for me means my two kitties, and two beehives.

    You'll never catch me on a cruise ship, but maybe this is the year I start travelling again. Happy to see you are travelling irregardless.


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