Getting Older · Health · Missional Life

going back to raw vegan


It’s Jan 28.

Tomorrow is Monday.

I am going back to raw vegan.

The weather is helping, in that, this coming week, we are supposed to get back into the 80’s, which helps me because I simply cannot handle cold raw veggies when I am internally cold or when it’s cold outside.

I felt really good, health-wise when I ate strict raw vegan for 2 years. I started that journey due to complicated health problems and felt that I could no longer trust the doctors to help me figure out what was going on with my body.

I was happily and snobbily strict raw vegan when we moved to Southern Cali in July of 2016, initially landing in San Diego and staying with my brother and my sister in law. Then a couple of months later, in September, we moved to Long Beach to be closer to our new church plant family, which is the sole reason we sold our house, packed up our belongings, and moved to Cali from Washington in the first place.

All the unknowns of making a move to be a part of a church plant, as well as the pressure of looking for a place to buy/live (not to mention feeling the sticker shock of Cali home prices), plus dealing with the chronic anxiety of my husband having to commute back and forth between San Diego and Long Beach on his days off but staying with my brother on his work days, which caused me to live like a part time single mother in the city, all this weighed heavily on my heart. If all that was not enough to cause turmoil, let’s add regular homeschool duties, along with living in a teeny tiny 1 bedroom apartment, not to mention the extra apprehension, uneasiness and shock to my senses that came with going back to city living after so many years of country living, well… was not something I anticipated, especially not as a part-time single mother. Did I also mention my seminary classes, along with leading a women’s Bible study, which I truly enjoyed, by the way, because connecting with those ladies over open Bibles was so good for my soul during that time. But it was also in conjunction with teaching a grammar/writing class to homeschoolers one time a week…..well it all turned out to be just a bit too much.

I thought, in my older age,  I had moved past being an emotional eater, but all the different stresses I mentioned above took me back to an eating insecurity that I thought no longer existed. I learned that as long as chaos existed in my day to day life, inevitably, chaos is what I put into my mouth. I do not eat according to what is nutritiously sound, but what feels good on my taste buds exclusively, in order to soothe or actually compensate for my overwhelming day that lacks consistency and structure. I become a literal slave to my taste buds and to assumed typical eating times. What I mean by that is traditionally we are supposed to eat 3 times a day. However, those culturally mandated eating plans originated during the industrial revolution when people were getting up at the crack of dawn and head to a factory to work all day. In order to force factories to not work people all day, they implemented a 9-5 work day. One article on Medical Daily states:

“After the industrial revolution, people began to turn a midday meal into a lunchtime staple, and the after-work meal turned into dinner, a placeholder for the next meal”

Another article says:

“In the 17th Century, all social classes more or less adopted the practice of breakfast, though it evolved into an absurdly decadent carnival of food for the upper class. Breakfast’s standard place in the eating routine throughout the socioeconomic ranks is thanks largely to the Industrial Revolution. The newly set pattern of the common work day more or less required a meal first thing in the morning to sustain the working populace throughout the day. They’d naturally break for lunch and then come home to their families for dinner.”

Since I have been functioning on the chaos of the last year and a half, I could go from a healthy smoothie, to a whole bag of chips, then a healthy carrot juice followed by several slices of cheese on bread in one days worth of food intake, not counting “meals”.

I still never touched meat though. I stopped eating meat entirely when I went fully raw vegan in 2015 and haven’t felt tempted to go back to eating it, in spite of adopting unhealthier eating patterns.

When I was eating a healthier raw vegan way, I found that 2 raw veggie meals a day was enough for me – a mid morning meal, (10-11 AM) and then another meal mid afternoon (3-4 PM). I juiced approx. 50 oz of fresh raw juices every morning that I sipped on throughout the day that kept me very satiated. When I fell into this very structured and consistent pattern of eating, I was amazed at how little by body needed to be healthy. I was never starving and rarely did my stomach growl.

I have learned about myself, through this move, that I thrive on stability, consistent daily routines, and schedules, even though other’s may find it “boring”, “unspontaneous”, or “too strict”. I grew up in family structure that lacked any form of consistency or stability and didn’t know that I needed it as much as I do, until I had it, and then no longer had it. One of the benefits of getting older is figuring out what works best for me and being unapologetic to live in such a way that reflects knowing what helps me mentally, emotionally, and physically.

But…..moving to Cali, I lost my way….again.

With my high schooler starting 2 college classes tomorrow, which meets every day at 7:30 am, except Friday, this will provide a bit of consistent routine that I need in my day. I have to actually get out of bed before 8:30 am, which is something I’ve been struggling to do since moving into this house in June, even though it is something that I have wanted to change about our day. Getting my daughter to her class every morning will force me out of bed and get my day started earlier. I am hoping to go walk at the college track every morning while I listen to the Bible reading plan that I signed up for at the beginning of the year, as I wait for my girl to get out of her class.

I am hoping that going back to raw vegan, I can regain the health gains I lost moving back to Cali a year and a half ago. We now have a church that is literally minutes from our house. Our house renovations are just about done…..well, sort of. It does feel like the dust is finally starting to settle in our lives and I can go back to a way of life that makes me feel healthier and keeps crazy painful symptoms at bay.

Raw vegan is not a fad for me. It’s not a diet or weight loss plan. It’s a literal way of life that changes the way my body feels, one veggie at a time. For the better. These changes not only affect me personally, but it also affects my mothering, my wife-ing, homeschooling, and my seminary-ing.

I know going back to raw vegan is gonna be hard at first. I will miss warm cooked foods. I know I will crave chocolate and my quesadillas made with sprouted organic corn tortillas with ooey gooey vegan cheese. I will definitely miss my free-range eggs that my happy chickens just started producing.

I don’t know how long I will last going cold turkey strict raw vegan….but I’m giving myself to keep it up for at least a week.

7 days. To start.

I am using the blog as a form of accountability for myself because the way my brain works…the more people know….the better it is for me to not let myself down.

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