By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , , , , /

I’m Zeke Angel and I’m sixteen. My name is Cindy Angel and I’m Zeke Angel’s
mom. My name is Frank Angel and I’m Zeke’s father. When Zeke was about twelve or thirteen he
was not growing and very thin. He began to have severe stomach pains. When he became
very chronically sick I think we were at our whit’s end. We have a lot of celiac in our
family, so I assumed it might be that, and took him to the GI doctor immediately for
an endoscopy. And what they found instead was Eosinophilic Esophagitis. After we found out what his diagnosis was,
we realized absolutely this began from the minute he put food in his mouth. He’s been
extremely allergic and reactive to foods his entire life. Zeke was on a television show, MTV’s True
Life: I’m Allergic to Everything. It’s really hard to deal with. I think that
the bullying that got on TV was good because that happens a lot. We don’t center around eating anymore. It’s
difficult at the holidays. Friends and family, they don’t really understand. We don’t make
big deals of eating at the holidays, you know, Thanksgiving, Christmas. I think last Easter
we challenged the family to just eat only what Zeke was allowed to eat, but… They didn’t really. They put, like, other
things on the food, you know? It wasn’t really just what I could eat. I know there were like forty-five baked potatoes
in the house, but they couldn’t have them without having sour cream and cheese, and
all the stuff, you know? It just needs to be a baked potato with salt and the butter
that he’s allowed to eat. That’s it. But they just couldn’t do it. I don’t think too much about it. I don’t get
down about what I have to have. It’s made me, I guess, better as a person ’cause I want
to help other people with it. The most positive thing that has come out
of this — we have had so much response from EOS (eosinophilic esophagitis) moms saying,
“My little guy has watched his True Life episode over and over and over. And now he’s like,
‘I can play sports because Zeke plays sports.'” So things like that are, I think, what he
was striving for. It’s very nice to encourage people and help them in that way. I hope they find a cure, you know? I don’t
know when it will be. Maybe like a month, you know, maybe more like twenty years from
now. I’ll be waiting.

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