Still Veganizing but it's a Bumpy Ride

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

I am on day 36 of trying on the vegan lifestyle (well, as it relates to food.) Some days have been better than others but I am still committed to reducing the amount of meat and dairy in my diet. In fact, I had my first piece of meat last week. It wasn't "all that" so - for now - I am okay without it.

Chicken is another story. At first I didn't miss it. Then I made Orange Chicken for my daughter and couldn't resist. Since then, I've had little bits and pieces here and there and that kicked in the cravings. The good news is they aren't overwhelming and it has been pretty easy to say no or to eat just a small amount. As a very wise Sparkfriend noted, it's the taste that I miss. It's all the salt, herbs, flavoring that go along with meat or chicken that I miss. In some ways I can duplicate that in other dishes.

Oh, and I miss cheese. That one is tough right now. There is no duplicating that for me.

If I lived alone, vegan wouldn't be difficult but with two kids and a husband, it is downright challenging at times. My husband likes meat. My daughter likes chicken. My son is a vegetarian. None of us are huge vegetable fans. But we all love pizza! I try to make meals that cover all the bases but sometimes it is exhausting. I am learning. And they aren't complaining.

Sometimes I beat myself up because I don't have this food thing down-pat. I don't have a sure-fire plan for dinner on most nights. I do come up with a menu each week and usually have the ingredients but life interrupts and I find myself leaning on old favorites. I have veganized most of them but it is not routine just yet.

I think food has been such a crutch for me for so long that I am in a weird food-anxious state. Food has been comfort to me. A good cheesy lasagne is like home to me. Add crusty bread and I am in heaven. Wine and coffee bring a sense of peace every time I see or think about them. Brownies just make me darn happy. Vegetables don't do that for me. At least not yet.

But I will keep trying.

I have made a lot of progress since January 2008 when I started on this journey. In the years prior to that, Taco Bell for lunch and ice cream after dinner were standard. I loved Big Macs and fries. When I was younger I used to treat myself to milkshakes from Arby's. Of course there were months of diets to undo my many food misadventures. Is it any wonder I put on so much weight?

Since 2008, my diet has improved greatly. And exercise is a big part of my life.

I might be frustrated because this isn't a linear trajectory. It is a bumpy ride and is taking forever to reach my goal. But I have made progress. And for today, that is enough...
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Not a linear trajectory...yes, m'am...that is surely true. I love that you're remembering all the things that HAVE changed.

    I'm missing cheese horribly. I just put a book on hold at the library: The Ultimate UnCheese Cookbook. I'll let you know how the recipes are.

    There are moments too that I just don't have the energy to be creative with my veges or try to work out a menu that fits both Mark and I. Having transition foods on hand helps (veggie burgers/patties, crumbles, bean burritos, etc). I will say that I love the simplicity of the meat/dairy free eating. What I've discovered is that making meat-focused meals is much more labor intensive than vegan ones.

    Keep up the great work! As with everything else since 2008, I suspect you're learning lots!
    1962 days ago
    I love your attitude about it all. Just keep trying. All the changes you've already made are setting you up for the changes you still want to make. Its a journey, remember? Not a race with a finish line, but a path to be followed for the rest of your life. Might as well enjoy the sights along the way, if you turn down a wrong trail just head back and move on forward!

    You not only can do this, you ARE doing it!
    1964 days ago
    I don't know that much about your diet. The greatest problem I have is breads. Once I get into my own place I will be able to decide what food plan I will go with. If your plan works for you keep up the good work.
    1964 days ago
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