Just Like When My House Is Actually Clean, I Really Notice The Stains On The Carpet

This herbivore/vegan experiment is going really well. I’m about 45 days, which is halfway if I’m doing it for 90 days. But I’m telling you now. I’ll be sticking with it indefinitely. My family will probably hate that I’m saying that because it’s definitely changed how we handle meals…but I really feel so good about it now I can’t see every going back.

The main reason I feel good about it? Is that my guilt issues with eating are basically gone. I still feed my feelings for sure, but not in a way that makes me hate myself. I think, maybe, I was harboring a lot of guilt about my consumption of animal products. Let’s face it, once you know how the animals live that we’re eating, it’s hard to not have some part of your subconscious thinking about that every time you eat an egg, or a piece of chicken. I’m not going to be all, “Meat is Murder!” but if you’ve seen any of the documentaries, or read the books or articles about the current state and manner of today’s meat/dairy/egg industry? Then you know. The information is everywhere. I probably knew it earlier than most because I read John Robbins back in 1995, and it’s only gotten worse since then. I think I’ve basically been carrying around a lot of guilt about my consumption of animal products every since.

So! The release of that guilt is something I didn’t realize would feel SO GOOD. I don’t feel bad about the food I eat anymore?

Now. Do I feel bad about feeding it to my family? Sort of. But they’re also eating a lot better now, so we’re shifting in the right direction. And Donnie, now that he’s the only one who is eating some of the main courses he cooks, is trying to at least buy meat more ethically raised than most. (However, don’t let packaging fool you. If you are trying to buy ethically raised animal products? Stick to your local farmers whom you know. There are still a lot of questionable practices even from farms who sell “cage free” or “no antibiotics” or “grass fed” products. If you don’t care? That’s fine! I get it! But if you do care, don’t let them fool you.)

My point? I’ll stick with it because it’s really nice not feeling bad about the food I’m eating. I really feel like the binge-eating related to emotions is fading too, it’s totally not gone yet, but it’s fading. I’m hoping that will keep happening over time and I’ll get to REALLY learn what it’s like to not live with food-related guilt.

HOWEVER – Now this ONE bad habit of mine is getting all of the spotlight.

You know what I’m going to say, don’t you? I have got to stop drinking this crap. It is my last vice and – while I’ve cut back dramatically over the years – I still drink too much. And now that I know the food I’m eating is always really good for me, that Diet Coke is starting to look more and more evil.

But y’all – I don’t WANNA give it up. It’s like, there’s a part of me that feels desperate to keep this one bad habit, because if I don’t? I feel like I’ll pick up a different bad habit to replace it. And while Diet Coke is awful, it’s better than – let’s say – meth. Or crack.

Not that I’m going to pick up a crack habit, but I don’t know! I feel like I have to have something! I can’t be the girl who eats (mostly) vegan and never drinks Diet Coke. That girl sounds like a major buzz kill.

But 45 days in and I can’t stop thinking about it. Before, Diet Coke used to just blend in with the rest of the crap I ate. But now? It’s under the spotlight every day. If I don’t do something about it, I worry I’ll go the other way and just add some more of the guilt-making crap back in to balance it out so the Diet Coke doesn’t get all the focus. And I don’t want that either.

So…Today. I’m going to try to stick to one Diet Coke. We’ll see what happens after that.

This makes me so sad that I’m almost embarrassed. When I quit smoking I told someone it was like losing a best friend who had always been there for me, and that’s how this feels. Like I’m losing my BFF of the last 20 years.

Which is, obviously, a larger sign that IT NEEDS TO GO.

8 Comments

  • LC

    Good for you on knowing what you want to eat and sticking with it. I can sympathize with the diet coke problem. I had a diet mt. dew problem, and then I got a very stern talking-to from Josh Pierson. I’ve only drank one more since then. If I want a soda now I drink am all natural one with cane sugar, no high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeetner. And I’ve been happier ever since. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Tara LoPresti

    This is so NOT what you want to hear, but…I really love soda, and I tried for years to cut back. Finally, the only thing that has worked, is to remove it from my life completely. (That means that my entire family had to quit as well.)
    Trying to moderate myself never worked, but telling myself that I just can’t ever have it again has completely worked, for over a year now. I tell myself that it’s an addiction, and just like an alcoholic can’t have “just one drink”, I can’t have “just one soda every now and then.” Whenever I have one, I ultimately go back to drinking it every day.
    Now, the good news: It was hard for about two weeks, and now it’s not hard at all. I started drinking sparkling water instead, because I discovered that what I really liked was the fizziness.
    Anyhow, I’m totally not judging! I love soda too, but just thought I’d share what finally worked for me. ๐Ÿ™‚ Good luck!

  • Mommyattorney

    Seconding the sparkling water recommendation. What I craved was the carbonation. La Croix is our favorite, but we also do Soda Stream with a squeeze of lime or lemon juice.

  • Cheryl

    I also quit cold turkey and I would drink a more than a case of diet coke a week all by myself. It was embarrassing. Anyhow, now I drink fresh brewed decaf iced tea out of my Keurig. And I substituted a coffee every morning for the caffeine hit I need to get going. And Tara’s right the first two weeks were the hardest in that my go to answer when asked, “want something to drink” was diet coke. I would say it then, remember I don’t drink it anymore and be embarrassed to call the server back and tell her “just water”. But now it’s nice not to have to cart it in the house every week.

  • Nienuh

    Sorry, but i think you should keep this one bad habit and just not feel guilty about it, for all of the reasons you mention and more. Running champ, vegan, social and no diet coke? Perfect people suck!

    • zoot

      I would except it is SO BAD for you! And I know that but I could ignore it when I was doing a lot of stuff bad for me!

  • Ksmaybe

    I just drastically cut my diet coke intake (from like 64 ounces a day to not even every day). The two week detox was awful-I chose iced teas from David’s tea as my replacement and I inadvertently chose caffeine free flavors. So, not only did I cut diet coke, I cut caffeine and caused myself great pain. I’m through to the other side and it’s fine now. You can do it!

  • Courtney

    Coca Cola used to be considered a dessert drink, and the portions were much, much smaller than you typically get these days. I don’t drink much soda to begin with (I have my other vices, I promise you) but I’ve recently started treating soda like a small after-dinner treat. My husband drinks so. much. pepsi. so sometimes I just pour a small glass for myself from his bottle. It satisfies the cravings without going overboard.