Y’all know I’ve called myself a “lazy herbivore” for over a year now. I like to eat plant-based when I can but I also don’t memorize hidden animal products in weird ingredients and I like to enjoy the random office treat (because I work in a real estate office and THERE ARE ALWAYS TREATS) which is rarely vegan. I don’t like the word vegan because it garners a lot of anger and hatred. From MEAT EATERS and vegans alike, which is really weird. I also just recently bought a handmade leather item from a leather-crafting friend (a purchase I justified by looking at the global impact of buy that versus a synthetic/plastic item made in a factory in china) and things like that make me using the word “vegan” almost illegal.
ANYWAY! PLANT-BASED! LAZY HERBIVORE!
I wasn’t eating very well in the months since my weird bought of depression started after my 100K.
Wait. Speaking of that phase – I let me get back to that for one second.
The reason it took me awhile to get help was because I didn’t feel like I matched my friend’s experiences with depression at all. It was a weird sadness that I think I just described as “tainting everything” but that I was functioning fine (except for the over-eating) but I just felt BAD. In general. Well, Heather is going through the same thing and – of course – described it beautifully.
But a low buzz of sadness hangs onto every minute of my day like a soggy cotton sweater. I wake up almost every morning with tears in my eyes from having cried in my sleep. For no reason.
ANYWAY! I was eating terribly while I was wearing that soggy cotton sweater. And I cared a lot less about the whole “plant-based” thing because I was trying to make a shift in the negative energy I was feeling: Sadness, Anxiety, Overwhelming Dread etc. My Grief Recovery calls these things we fall back on: STERBs (Short Term Energy Relieving Behaviors). Food is my STERB. Basically, when I’m sad/stressed/whatever-bad-feeling – I know food will break that energy inside of me. It disrupts it for a moment, maybe not feeling “better” in a true sense but feeling “different” which my mind associates as “better” – so I go to the food. And from February until May I had kinda stopped caring even what food that was.
And holy SHIT I felt disgusting.
So, as part of all of the recovery I am trying to get back on track because I felt BETTER even on a BINGE day when I was eating plant-based. I bought the book I’ve heard so much about: How Not To Die and I’ve been trying to make note of the foods I’m eating throughout my day so I can just say, “Is this good for my mind, body, and soul?” for at least a moment as I write it down.
And – I’ve decided to try to eat salads.
See, I have this weird problem as an herbivore. My stomach is very sensitive to whatever it is on the outside of plants that sometimes makes you feel like you’re digesting rocks. I haven’t tested it thoroughly because the pain is debilitating, but basically things like raw broccoli, almonds (not almond milk, just almonds and almond butter), some greens, advocados…they cause me extreme pain and discomfort and so I cook the shit out of everything.
BUT! Fresh is so much better! Right?
SO. I’ve been playing around with salads for about a month now while I test out items and see if they don’t make me want to die. I started with spinach greens because they’ve never bothered me and then built/tested from there and NOW I HAVE THE RECIPE FOR KIM’S PERFECT SALAD.
Just to make sure you appreciate the effort that goes into this salad from someone who HATES ALL ACTIONS RELATED TO COOKING – I need you to know: Everything had to be cut by me. NOTHING WAS PRE-CUT. I mean, the Spinach was bagged but it was WHOLE. I even cut the tiny tomatoes! I CUT IT ALL.
- Carrots (peeled and cut fresh – no mini carrots for this girl)
- Baby tomatoes
- Kalamata Olives (I buy the whole pitted an then cut them b/c the pre-sliced ones seem slimier)
- 1/2 TBS of Chia Seeds (I’m scared about braving more due to my tummy issues, and that shit is EXPENSIVE)
- 1 microwaved and cut-up GARDEIN Chick’n Patty. I know a lot of people don’t like meat replacements but this one is just DELICIOUS and it adds a punch to my salad.
- About 1/2 cup of drained white beans from a can.
- Some italian dressing
Eventually I’d like to start cooking the white beans myself (Easy ideas?) and I’d like to make my own dressing (Easy recipes? I like Italian dressings with red pepper) to really seal the deal but otherwise? This salad is MY BOMB. I look forward to eating it every day. I don’t look forward to making it, it has stretched out my morning prep a lot…BUT! I think it’s worth it.
This week was kinda the first week I’ve gotten “on track” with my eating. I’m trying to not think about the 15-20lbs I’ve gained in the last few months. (Especially because I’m on steroids for a hideous bought of infected poison ivy and no one should sept on the scale when they’re on steroids.) I’m just focusing on tracking my health (water intake, food etc) and moods (I’ll talk about how I’m tracking my moods later) and just trying to really think about what I need when I am craving a STERB. Do I really need that bag of french fries? How will my body process that and how will it affect my mood? I have “alternatives” I’m trying to go to that will “disrupt the negative energy” like food does: Make an Eboost Water, Make a cup of coffee, walk around the building, stretch etc. Trying to disrupt that energy in a more HEALTHY way.
So far, so good. I mean, I have a kickass salad…what more do I need, right?