Below, you will find a copy of the journal I kept during my transition into, and my first year of, a 100% raw, vegan diet. Some of it is quite personal, but I still wanted to share it with all of you. We may never meet in person, but I feel we are all connected in this world.I want to share my story with you, in hopes that you may learn something about yourself by reading about my journey into the raw lifestyle. Perhaps you'll be inspired (that's my wish), or learn to not make similar mistakes.
The journal begins in July of 2006 and continues into October 2007. If you are interested in reading something from the beginning, please use the archive feature at the right side of this page. If a month has more than one page worth of entries, there will be a "previous entries" link at the bottom of the page to view the rest of the entries for that month.
I have not edited my entries at all. Any entries that were originally marked private have been made public (with the exception of one that included personal information about people other than myself). Even though the entries are old, you are still welcome to add comments or ask questions. We will be notified of any comments that are left.
Again, I hope that I am in some way able to offer something positive to your life by sharing my personal Going Raw Journal.
Lots of love and peace to all of you,
I'm not going to start a day count, yet. Once I go completely raw, I'll start counting the days. I'm still building up my inner resolve to make this change that I know is so very right for me. I'm reading a lot on the Web and in books. I've been raw before, but never more than a few months. This time I have a feeling that my body really needs to be eating only live foods. I feel that my health is declining, I am aging faster than I should for my years on this earth (40). I want to feel alive, happy, vibrant, and whole.
This journey isn't about what I eat, or don't eat. It's about how I want to feel and how I can get to that point of health. Eating raw, living foods is one of my ways to get there. It's all so very natural, makes so much sense, and I truly feel ready to embrace such a natural way of living. In the past I've allowed what others have thought to change my mind about the path I was on. To be honest, in the past I didn't have such a strong internal voice telling me this is what I need to do. I have always been interested in healthy eating. I've been a vegetarian all my life, but I was forced to eat meat until I was about twelve years old. I've been vegan for many years, too, but tend to fall back to dairy as a comfort food. The healthiest I've ever felt was when I was doing a lemonade fast. I felt fantastic--filled with energy and life. After going off that fast, however, I gained a lot of weight. I read later that my body stored everything I ate as fat because I was in a starvation mode, or something. It was disappointing, but I still remember how wonderful I felt while I was only consuming the lemonade. I've felt almost as good when I was eating only raw foods, but not quite as good as with the lemonade fast.
Lately we've been eating a lot more greens than we have in the past. We joined a CSA and have fresh, organic garden veggies every Thursday. Since my husband doesn't like the texture of cooked greens (I don't boil them until they are mush--I just lightly cook them), he has been juicing his greens with some carrots and sometimes beets. I've been drinking the juice with him, but I've also been eating the greens. I feel the changes in my body just from those small changes (the fresh juices and eating more greens). I feel like the energy of the plants is reminding my body that this is what it's supposed to be consuming, this is how it's supposed to be feeling (with even more energy to come if I consume more live and less cooked foods).
I hate the passive aggressiveness that I am living with. My husband, who's a very nice guy most of the time, is extremely passive aggressive. The more the years go by, the more I see it on a day-to-day basis. What he said last night really pissed me off.
We went to the home of a dear friend to drop off some things for her and also to borrow her Excalibur dehydrator and vegetable sprially kind of hand cranked machine. I told my family a day or two earlier that I was planning on eating healthier and cutting out more and more unhealthy foods. I didn't want to scare them with the whole raw foods thing, again, since my husband was completely against it the first time and our daughter loved it, but craved cooked food to the point that she felt guilty for wanting it. It was at that point, when I realized she was having an internal struggle over wanting something that she felt was bad that we started eating cooked foods again.
Anyway, so I worked it into a conversation that I was planning on eating healthier. At that point my husband made some sort of snort noise and implied that the juicing we have been doing and the salads should be enough. I didn't say anything, but saw that he was already putting up a negative energy about what I said. He's a meat and potatoes guy at heart who's living with a vegetarian, so I tend to not argue as much about this issue with him. He eats vegetarian in the house and also when we eat out a lot of the time, but he still eats meat and lots of dairy and "refined" foods. But, last night he really pissed me off.
I want to keep an eye on some health observations as I go through this change.
* I went off the Metformin that was prescribed for my PCOS/lifetime irregular menstrual cycles. Within a few days I felt like my chest was lighter. I took the medicine just to see if it would work (it did), so now I know I have a problem with insulin resistance (even though I'm not diabetic). While on the medicine, however, I developed some bad heart palpitations and a heaviness in my chest. I was sent to a cardiologist who told me that the heart murmur and mild mitral valve prolapse I was always told that I had was actually a moderate (as in medium, not mild) mitral valve *regurgitation* and not a prolapse. Eventually, based on everything I've read, my heart should tire of working so hard and just one day give up. There is an operation that is being done to connect the mitral valve so that it doesn't allow the blood to keep flowing back into the upper chamber. Anyway, I am convinced that even though I was born with a heart valve problem, it wasn't anything major until I started taking that Metformin. I feel, already, that my heart isn't feeling as sick as it was on that medicine.
* My menstural cycles were only regular while on the Metformin, so I'm going to be keeping an eye on how things go as I transition to a completely raw diet. I am seriously thinking of seeing a naturopath to possibly help me with the insulin resistance problem that is causing my irregular cycles.
I'm reading a lot of Web sites right now, along with some books. I'll update this later when I have the books in front of me, to list the titles. I've read a lot of raw info in the past, but this time my goal is to keep myself steadily reading about raw foods for at least a year (or more!).
Yesterday's Indian food has me up about two pounds from water retention. It's about 9:30 in the morning, too, and I'm not hungry yet. I did eye up a banana this morning, thinking I might have that with some walnuts and soymilk for breakfast. I'm not sure about lunch. I need to pack some snacks for the day, since I'll be out for over five hours.
I tried a Rawma Bar yesterday, but couldn't even eat 1/4 of it. It tasted a bit like alcohol, or maybe spoiled. It was $2 at the food co op and I have another one here by the same company, but I have no desire to even try it. I wonder if I can return the unopened one? I liked the Rawvolution Bar, though. That was just like something I'd make at home. It's too high in carbs compared to the amount of protein, however. Since I have to watch my balance of protein and carbs (because of the PCOS/insulin resistance) I need to have no more than 30g carbs in one meal that are matched with at least 14 grams of protein. That's what helps my body stay balanced with the insulin. Again, I'm not diabetic, but something doesn't work well. I'm hoping raw foods will eventually correct the problem. The last time I went raw, however, it caused my menstrual cycles to become even worse. Maybe my body was just working everything out, though, and I didn't give it long enough to heal.
I think it's going to be harder to update on the weekends, but I'll try to get here as many days to comment as possible.
This weekend I'm going to clean out the pantry. I'm not going to go crazy and get rid of everything (like I've done in the past). I *am* going to get rid of things that aren't eaten pretty regularly, however. If I'm successful with getting that done, I'm going to do the same for our bathroom linen closet and medicine cabinet. Then, if there's still a lot of motivation to continue with the purging, I'm going to go through our cleaning supplies. I have many old, non earth-friendly cleaners that have been in the house for years that I don't use anymore. I want to get rid of all of those things, too.
For breakfast this morning, I'm going to make up a really pretty fruit salad with strawberries, blueberries, mint, and maybe some banana and/or apple. Oh, maybe we can juice the apple with a little carrot and celery. I'll see if my husband feels like juicing--he has become the juiceman in our home. Even though he's giving up negative signals about me going raw, he's into juicing and eating all the healthy veggies we've been getting from the local farm each Thursday. He's probably going to want to get a bagel this morning, though, because he adores bread and has made it his tradition to get bagels every weekend morning for himself (and our daughter). I don't care for all that bread, though. It sits too heavy in my stomach and later I get a headache, as though I need to eat something, but I'm not hungry.
It's a Sunday, so my daughter was asking for pancakes. I'm not forcing myself to eat any way that I'm not ready for, so I wanted the pancakes and I ate them without guilt. :-) I had some of that leftover cashew butter with blueberries and it tasted unbelievably wonderful!
Yesterday I started cleaning out the pantry. I gave a bunch of stuff away to a friend and now today I'll scrub the shelves down and organize what's left. I was really hoping I wouldn't have much left at all in there, but I still have a lot. I have this thing for spices, and even though I have a very good-sized spice cabinet, it's still not big enough to hold all that I have. It's not that I don't use them up, either. I guess I'm just really into using a lot of herbs and spices because my mother never used them and once I tasted spices, it was like walking into a whole new world (especially the Indian spices). I did get rid of spices that I bought too many of though (like cumin--why did I have so many bags of cumin? I think it's from when I was making up spice gifts for some family memebers over the holidays).
My husband can be seen relaxing on the couch the past few days, reading the raw food book that I just finished! Is this a sign that he's not going to give me a hard time about me going raw? He's said there are recipes in there that look really good to him, too! Yay! It's so much more fun to eat when others are sharing in what you are eating, too.