Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Letting Go

I've been thinking of this next post for awhile now. I mean, since the last time I wrote. So, this may be a bit longer because I may have to go on a “philosophical” journey towards the end.

I just got done cooking a lot! I kept coming home and not cooking much and wasn't eating the things I had planned for. So I finally just came home early from work to cook up a storm and now it's all in my fridge, including chopped up veggies to put into the crock pot for chili tomorrow. Lately I've been saving money on food so I can spend elsewhere. I can say it's easier than I thought. I use websites like and happy herbivore to make cheap, quick recipes.

This is all great, because lately it has felt as if I've been cooking for two. This last week I actually just made a meal plan for two people. I'm sure no one is interested in my love life, and I will only talk about it here as it relates to my diet, but the guy I'm dating devours my cooking. I can make something that would last me several days in leftovers and it will be gone that night. I'm not sure if I'm just that good of a cook, or he's particularly gluttonous. Haha, I'm making him sound awful. Anyways, this great guy has had me happily cooking for two for awhile, and I think it's benefited me more than him. I LOVE to cook for people. I've known this for awhile, but to actually have someone that will eagerly eat what I put in front of them is a completely new experience. I get even more excited to find recipes we'll enjoy and rush home to cook something nutritious instead of lounging and looking for any carbs that may be unprotected from my lethargy. I actually ate rice and peas with hot sauce the other night. This was a night that my guy was at work. Figures. But for the most part, I am learning new recipes and find cooking to be my favorite pass time.

The sad news is that all this wonderful plant-based cooking I've been doing in overdrive hasn't helped my energy level much. I've even been eating salads every day at work. Overall, I'm the same moody, lazy me. All of the crazy tasks I've been required to do now I've only managed to accomplish through shorter hours at work and caffeine. I don't like reverting to caffeine most times, but it has become a sad reality that it may be my only option for grad school and the road leading up to it. Most people would find this pretty normal, but caffeine isn't the best option for people with insulin and fatigue issues. Honestly, I still have to be careful, because it can make me crash into an even worse fatigue.

The upcoming move to Texas and prospect of starting graduate school has forced me to put a few things in perspective. Number one, being that I really needed to feel better by now. I'm at the point where feeling better is not in the cards in any near future. I'm not even sure it will be in the next couple years. I'm not saying diet and smart choices don't work to help your health situation, but maybe it doesn't work for everyone. Some people may just be too sick. For example, my mom has been having many scary health issues lately. Even though she's not as healthy as I am, and is in even more stressful situations than I am, there's no denying her body is working against her. My body seems to always be upset and never acts like a twenty-something body should act. I'm not complaining, these are just the facts. This being said, I would never give up living the way I do and striving for even better. There's nothing wrong with living a healthy lifestyle. I'm still doing my body a lot of favors. Who knows how much worse I would feel if I didn't do what I do now.

The point is that, I AM LETTING GO. I've been battling with this for almost five years and have made great improvements to my health, but none to ultimately make me wake up refreshed and ready for the day ahead. I am too hard on myself for not doing enough: “If I just were to go to the gym every day, I'd feel better.”, “If I ate more greens every day, I'd feel better.”, “If I started meditating, I'd feel better.” and so on. Goals are wonderful, but they can only get you so far when you feel like crap. Feeling like crap makes all those things you could be doing borderline impossible to do. I'm not saying they are, or that people should give up, but if your well-being were truly dependent on doing EVERYTHING right, what are the odds your body will cooperate and let you do that? I finally realized this while giving advice to a friend. I told him to stop being so hard on himself and that there's only so much one person can do when they are tired and depressed. You need help.

Unhealthy people cannot be expected to cure themselves. I know some can, and I admire them. The wonderful transformations I hear about every day on plant-based blogs happen, and there's no problem shooting for them. I am not perfect and have tried my best. I'm at the point where I eat lots of veggies. My grocery trips are composed of ¾ of my shopping cart being from the produce isle. Not many Americans could say that! I take vitamins that vegans should take so I don't have to think fatigue could come from any deficiencies. I have a love of yoga and running that has been cut short because of back pain, but I would love to start again. All I should be is proud, and yet when I don't get better I feel like I'm doing something wrong. I'm sure I am, but if I keep viciously attacking myself, I will become more fatigued and depressed. I guess you really have to take things one day at a time. I will be looking to doctors again for medications that may help, most likely Metformin. I think I'm at the point where I need a boost of something to get me to the next step. Or maybe, it's just a very gradual process with small change upon small change accumulating to amount to the final drop I need to fill the metaphorical health vase. None of this sounds uplifting, but believe me, I feel so much better. I am putting less pressure on myself to be perfect. At least, I'm trying. I still find days where I make lists of all the things I could do and should do in my head. I stop and make to-do lists now that are actually 100% necessary. These are still stressful for me, but grad school and being an adult take up a lot of time, especially when every moment is a struggle to stay awake and be productive. I still keep small goals. For example, I am trying to go to yoga at least once a week and I make sure to get a big salad every day. The little things are all I can do, and that is OK.

I'd like to finish off by saying that I do have a lot on my plate. Writing once a week, or even once a month, does not seem like something I have time or energy to do. I appreciate any people that have been reading and know I'm not giving up or quitting writing. My entries will be sporadic from now on and will probably only come about if I've had a break through or have a new plant-based thing to share with you. I hope this discourages no one and that you all find true health.

Thai Curry

Curried Chickpeas. Notice a pattern? 

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