I don't follow a lunar calendar, but I would guess that there is a full moon or something. Or, maybe, just maybe, the reality of being back in the real world has hit me in the head like a ton of tofu since returning from my Engine 2 Immersion.
What I am feeling is real. Not everyone in the world wants to be vegan. Not everyone wants to avoid eating cholesterol heavy foods. And not everyone gives a hoot about getting healthy. Staying strong. And, while I try, really try, to NOT take the inventory of others, I can't help it.
And really, the world couldn't give a damn about your strong convictions in staying vegan and getting healthier. So, here's what went down.
It's been a special week of fun at work, and there has been more food on parade than there is on the Food Network, and not all of it has been plant strong. I had to preserve my resentment, and I had to be proactive and pack a great plant strong lunch everyday. No biggie, really.
Seeing your vegan pals eat meat is like learning that your best friend's husband is cheating. A friend at work who is vegan, has been snorting meat, cheese, cake, and other foods all week. And the funny part, as I would enter a room, this friend would be in the kitchen eating pizza in record time. Inhaling it, in fact. Through the corner of my eye, I would see the embarrassment, but I realized one thing. You might make the decision for the first bite, but after that, you really have no control...cognitive, affective, or otherwise. That physical SNAP is loud and it hurts. That snap can set you into a tailspin. One is always too many. With that first bite, I am convinced that it is laced with a binge.
Seeing my friend surrender his vegan domain left me feeling isolated. I felt alone. And I felt betrayed. Sounds silly, right? It reinforced, for me, that being vegan is the best thing I have ever done for myself. And in reality, I do not need to be consumed about others and their actions.
I've had a rough week at work. I think I handled all the curve balls well. And, I ducked when I needed to. And, I did not solve the problem with food. I solved it with thought provoking actions, and I tried my best. And I kept my mouth shut, in more ways than one. I didn't eat AND I didn't voice my opinion. My lips were sutured with iron thread.
I am posting a great recipe from the Whole Foods Market website...one that I have tried...and tweaked to suit my favorite flavors (I like freshly grated garlic, what can I say?).
Have a nice day. Continue to breathe deeply and count ALL of your blessings.
Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
This quick and easy meal is a testament to the satisfaction of a good main course salad and is just one example of how to include healthy, protein-packed beans in a warm-weather menu. It's simple to double this recipe for two, or increase further to serve even more. Maybe it will become the summer potluck dish you're famous for! Serve with pita chips or warm pita bread on the side.
5 cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 small zucchini or yellow squash, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1/2 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
4 pitted black olives, such as Kalamata, halved
2 tablespoons roughly chopped parsley
1 tablespoon prepared balsamic vinaigrette or Italian dressing
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Ground black pepper to taste
2 or 3 lettuce leaves, torn into large bite-size pieces
Toss together all ingredients, except lettuce, in a large bowl. Arrange lettuce on a dinner plate and top with bean mixture.