Life’s Journey 140

Day 2805:

Why did I go vegan?

Sometimes it isn’t just as easy as one reason. I was unhealthy and unhappy. I had a stroke a couple of years ago. I was overweight, had high blood pressure, high cholesterol. I have children and a husband to live for, I have me to live for.

I went plant-based a year ago in order to fix the things I did to myself. I read everything I could, watched documentaries, listened to actual doctors and nutritionists, and then decided that it was the best thing I could do for myself. Over my first month I went from plant-based to vegan (maybe 2 months). What’s the difference?

Plant-based means that you don’t consume animal products, no eggs, no meat, no dairy. Just cutting out those things cut down my cholesterol by a lot (considering that cholesterol is only found in animal products). I was on a quick road to a heart attack. I wasn’t bloated anymore either! I didn’t have awful stomach aches in the morning (found out I was lactose intolerant) followed by not-so-pleasant bowel issues.

At 5’2” and 215lbs, I was beyond unhealthy. I, like most people in the US, work during the day and somehow thought that McDonalds was a sufficient lunch. Come on past me, get your shit together. I was drinking coffee for breakfast, then coffee on the way to work (so what, I like— uhhh love coffee) with a bagel with cream cheese and hashbrowns, then probably a bag of chips for a snack, then lunch was usually something quick (since I get a 30 minute break including food pickup) like McDs, BK, or Wendys (double cheeseburger, fries, large coke). Dinner time… chicken, baked potato, bread, and a veggie… ya know, to make it healthy.

So, like I said, I went from plant-based to vegan. I didn’t just jump in head first without doing any research. I wanted to feel better and be better. It wasn’t until I started digging deeper, that I was confronted with what my actions were actually doing. Like I said before, once you know something, you can’t unknow it. I’m not going to go into the gore-filled details, you can look that up yourself.

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I’m not saying that people shouldn’t eat meat, but don’t be a jerk about it to those of us who choose not to. Also, you should know where your food comes from. Respect what another being gave you because your taste buds are more important than their life. It just amazes me the double standards that we have. If we forced humans to live in the conditions that we make these animals, someone would speak up. If we were forcibly raped and impregnated just to have our babies taken away from us for someone else to consume our milk, we would be in prison. But they are just animals…. yeah, so are we. They aren’t smart enough to compare to humans. Okay, so if a person has a low enough IQ, it’s okay to eat them? What about your dog?

With even all of that stuff out of the way, I find it very funny that when you post anything, even a picture of a salad that didn’t use breast milk and used a vegan alternative, there is someone always posting a picture of a slab of meat or a steak or something along those lines. Cool, you don’t understand something, so make fun of it? Gotta love the less than intelligent trolls. No need for that BS, just keep strolling. I mean, when you do it on a vegan specific page or post, you are clearly going out of your way to just be a douche. We get it, you live in your mom’s basement and have no friends. Good for you.

 

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Life’s Journey 139

Day 2667-

Life has its ups and downs. Things have been going okay. Depression comes and goes, anxiety looms over me every day. I need a change. I feel healthier since I changed to a vegan diet. I’ve been more conscious about the things I use and do as far as animals go. I didn’t even think about that when I changed my diet, I just wanted to be healthier.

Another thing that I have recently changed is the fact that things don’t make me happy. I have been getting rid of more and more stuff lately. Have I used this recently? Will I use this in the near future or am I holding onto it… just in case? Does this cause me long term happiness? Does this contribute to my health? Those are the things that I ask myself when I am either buying something or thinking about throwing stuff out/donating/selling. Letting go of things is really starting to feel good. It feels freeing! I am enjoying the fact that I can appreciate the things that I do keep even more. This also gives me more time with my family and less things that I have to clean up. I recently threw out about 60% of my clothes and a bunch of books that I wasn’t using, I gave to the church across the street. I still have a long way to go, but I think that I am off to a good start. I’ve been doing the same thing with my thoughts. If it’s not that important, let it go. If it is important, say something after you actually thought out the situation. This has been making life so much easier.

I have also been re-evaluating my relationships lately as well. Who is helping me and who is holding me back? I just celebrated 8 years being married to my husband. I can say that, right now, we have a better relationship than we ever had. Communication is the best thing that I can say has changed everything that we look at. We talk about everything now, we make time for each other, we go out of our way for each other. It is so nice. I know that when he comes home from work, I get a good morning kiss and when I wake up, I make him breakfast. It’s the little things that we do for each other that count and really make a difference. i can tell that he is going out of his way to make me happy every day and I do the same for him. It feels so good all around. Something as simple as a nice hot cup of coffee and video games together before I have to go to work or our family dinner and game night on Wednesdays. I make sure that I have off on Wednesday every week because I know he does too and that gives us at least 1 day to spend together from wake up to sleep. He really is my everything and I am so lucky to have a guy as great as he is.

Then… there are the terrible relationships…

I had someone that I was friends with for 7 years. We were military wives together. She found herself homeless with her 16 year old son. We took them in for Christmas so that they didn’t have to spend Christmas and New Years in a shelter. She ended up being a nightmare. So condescending and awful. When no one else was around, she would just talk down to me and psychoanalyze everything that I did. When I told her something that she was doing in my home bothered me, instead of saying “oh, I’m sorry” she would say, “why does that bother you? What are you insecure about?” What a scumbag way to talk to someone who is trying to help you. She pretty much told me that my house was messy… I have 2 kids and my husband and I both have full time jobs… with more hours during the holidays. She was just being an asshole pretty much. I didn’t trust her very much from the first day that she was there because she waited until we pulled up in front of my house to tell me that she had a boyfriend in prison here… after I drove for almost 6 hours both ways to go and pick them up and bring them here. Right after that, all she did was talk shit on the lady that took them in before us. Ungrateful. When my husband asked her to leave, she tried to guilt him and I into letting them stay. She took my work sneakers with her that I let her use since she had to walk to a lot of places and didn’t have sneakers. $65 work sneakers gone. Then she had the nerve to say that she didn’t take them, but she is a liar and doesn’t lie well, so I already know that wasn’t true. I also found my stamp holder, which holds 100 stamps, empty and in my door organizer… I used about 10 stamps out of the whole thing. I gave her $75 out of my paycheck to use for things that they needed that they couldn’t get with food stamps (socks, gloves, hats, sneakers) but instead she put $25 of it on her boyfriend’s phone account and the other $50 on his commissary. Way to take care of your child first… that’s a shitty person. She had the nerve to tell me that she was going to call Social Services on my husband and I because we neglect our children and don’t take care of them. Riiiiigggghhhtttt. We both have full-time jobs, the kids are fed (and healthy food with barely any processed crap), they have more than what they need and never want for anything, and they are happy. My kids are taken care of. I don’t know where someone that tells their 16 year old son that he should “drop out of school and get a job because 2 incomes are better than one” gets off on saying anything bad about the people that took them in since she can’t take care of her own obviously. People like her make me loose faith in humanity. She is teaching her son that living as a mediocre person is okay to do in life and she is giving him a shitty start to his adult life. It really is sad because it is a cycle that she is starting, not ending. Truly sad.

All-in-all, things have been really good lately. Even the bad stuff doesn’t seem as bad because I have been changing the way that I have been thinking about things. I feel like I am more at peace with a lot of things and hopefully, as I continue to work on myself more, it will only keep getting better. Today, whether I am happy or depressed, I am still good with myself, and that is what is important.

Life’s Journey 136

Day 2526:

 

So tired. Only 2 more days until vacation… and I need it! My brain is just D O N E. Between juggling our schedules, Morgan’s appointments, work, and just life, I’m tired.

This week has been…. ugh. That’s all I can say about that.

I got hungry 3 nights ago. Not knowing what I wanted, I threw something together. Tofu sauteed in sesame oil with sweet, heat, chili sauce, green and wax beans, green onion, and sesame seeds. Turned out to be phenomenal!! Totally making this again!

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2 nights ago we had Japanese curry. The hubs and the kids had theirs with panko crusted chicken and onions and I had mine with crispy tofu, onions, green onions, steamed broccoli, and garbanzo beans.

So yesterday for lunch… leftovers!!!!!!!!

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I didn’t think that I could find much at the Chinese buffet if I went with my family… but that happened too!

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I can’t wait until next week. I like spending time in Lancaster, PA because I get some super yummy fruits and veggies so dinners will be exceptionally good next week. Fresh and local is definitely the way to go.

Life’s Journey 135

Day 2522:

Sorry that I missed the last few days. Morgan had a surgery Thursday (nothing crazy), spent a few days at my sister’s house, worked, and got to see some friends that I haven’t seen in a while/met for the first time.

So I made a breakfast scramble yesterday that was sooooo good. I tweaked the “egg” recipe to add extra garlic. It made them so much better.

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“Eggs”. green and red bell peppers, onions (lots), and fresh and powdered garlic. Recipe for “eggs”:

1 block (15 ounces) of firm or extra firm (I prefer extra firm) tofu

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder (add more if you love garlic)

1/4 sea salt

1/4 turmeric powder

3 Tbsp.vegetable broth (I don’t use this, but I guess you can)

vegan butter

actual recipe here

So there ya go!

The kids love it too!

For lunch I made buffalo tofu bites, rosemary and olive oil quinoa, and garlic asparagus sauteed in coconut oil.

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Press the tofu to get all the liquid out, coat in flour and dust off the excess, pan fry with peanut oil, and toss in your favorite buffalo wing sauce. If you like ranch 617xtUsfF+L._SY355_

This is what I use because it’s the only one I can find in this area but there are other brands, and you can also make your own. Either way, this was a yummy lunch!

Dinner was easy…

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Yesterday, I went to dinner with friends… Red Robin. Probably the best place to eat vegan. So glad that they have so many vegan choices, and they serve Boca burgers!

 

Life’s Journey 134

Day 2518:

Twice in one day! I had to share this. My sister made taco lasagna for dinner… So I made some too!

1 pack of extra firm tofu, 1 packet of taco seasoning (or mix your own), 1 bag of shredded “cheese” (I used pepper jack shown above), and lasagna noodles (I learned my lesson, don’t use the no boil noodles). Make your tofu up with the taco seasoning and then layer like you would regular lasagna. Bake until done and then top with your favorite taco toppings!!!!

The kids both loved it and so did I.

For dessert, dark chocolate truffle ice cream. Yummy!

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Life’s Journey 130

Day 2504:

Anxiety: I’ll see if I can find a good way to describe it. It almost feels like misplaced adrenaline? Like constant flight in a non fight or flight situation.

I worry about things that other people would think is silly. I don’t just worry, I obsess. I make lists, I replay conversations over and over again in my head, I re-read text messages until I feel beyond broken. I compare myself to other people, but I am not a narcissist. I am not doing it to feel better or worse about myself, I do it to try to understand.

I feel empathy. When someone near me is sad, I feel sad. When someone near me is happy, I feel happy. When someone near me feels hopeless, I understand.

I want to feel normal. I want to go a whole day without feeling like something was wrong somewhere in my life. I feel like an emotional wreck most of my day. On the flip side, I feel monumentally accomplished when I do something that I think that I could not do or when I think I’m not going to finish something on time and I get it done, better than I thought, and early!

I stay awake at night wondering what is going to happen to me in the future, what will happen to my kids if something happens to me, what will happen to my husband? Geez. I wake up exhausted.

This is the shit that goes through my mind. It’s awful not being able to let go of things. I wish I could be one of those people but it just doesn’t happen. I laugh at people when they tell me, “you need to let it go”. Sure thing buddy, tell me how.

I’ve tried breathing exercises, counting things, doing the “sight, smell, touch, sound” exercises, and countless others. Walking, driving, humming… Temp fixes for a permanent thing. I feel defective.

I JUST WANT TO SCREAM!

The other thing that pisses me off… “I know how you feel…” Nope. Thanks well adjusted friend. Comparing how I feel all the time to how you feel before a first date, not the same. That is nervous, there is a difference. I hate when people try to make you feel like they get it when they don’t. They try to convince you that this one time, when something happened to them… Still not getting it. I don’t need you to tell me you know how I feel, I need you to just be there. Sometimes human contact goes a long way. A hug makes a difference, not always, but sometimes. I know it’s sad, but sometimes I keep people around that I don’t like so that I know who not to turn into. I’ll probably never tell them that but there is my secret, lol.

Until next time friends….