I remember when I first got my driver’s license, I couldn’t imagine how anyone ever falls asleep at the wheel — or, for that matter, eats/texts/fiddles with the radio while driving. There was so much to worry about! So much to keep track of! I would hunch over the wheel, back tense, and give it my undivided attention.
Then I got used to driving and became as drowsy as the rest of them. (A horrible game to play with yourself is to look at the faces of other drivers as you pass them on the other side of the road. They are invariably a) half-asleep, b) actually asleep, or c) looking down at their phone.)
When I imagine staying at home with a newborn and toddler, I imagine it to be full of endless stimuli. How could I ever get bored? There is so much to worry about! So much to keep track of! Parenting is such a new concept — to me, anyway — that I doubt I’ll ever lack for distraction or something to do.
On Day 12 of the Whole30 nutrition program. We’re hanging in there.
Quick summary: Fill up on meat/seafood, veggies, and fruit — but you can’t have dairy, beans/corn/soy, peanuts, grains, booze, added sugar, or things like carrageenan/MSG/sulfites (none of which I can define). You have to read every label and scrutinize every ingredient. It will likely mean you make your own sausage, tomato sauce, Caesar salad dressing, and mayonnaise.
Breakfast has gone from a bowl of dry Cheerios with cheese on the side, to:
Slider buns get replaced with potato wedges, accompanied by homemade mushroom/kale/squash chips:
And, as an added bonus, you get intimately acquainted with your grocery store clerks!
The Whole30 lasts about 45 days — 30 days of following the rules, then a two-week period of slowly reintroducing food categories and seeing how your body responds. Do you feel more bloated? sluggish? Does your skin break out? Is your sleep suddenly restless? From then on, you can know which foods keep your energy high and which foods make you gassy. Everybody wins.
Ideally, you’ll not only manage your weight better, you’ll also rack up NSVs — non-scale victories. But I’ve been surprised which ones have bubbled up, for me:
more gratitude for food
praying before every meal and almost every snack
and meaning it!
more peace while eating
I used to “need” to read a book or watch a show while eating. Now I can sit quietly, simply savoring and thinking.
more confidence in the kitchen
I hated to stray from a recipe, but now I’m growing more comfortable estimating — and riffing!
less screen time
because when you can’t just zone out in front of the boob tube, mindlessly feeding yourself chips, there are fewer and fewer excuses to watch TV at all
more sense of control at work
Building on the positive momentum of planning ahead and meal-prepping at home, I feel more motivated to tackle work projects and chip away at each next action. One positive change in life can lead to another, and another.
All right, so far the Whole30 has not been all magic & fairies…but the good has outweighed the struggle, and we’re still early into it. The book promises that in a week or two we’ll be filled with Tiger Blood.
I look forward to that.
Of course, eating itself reminds us that none of us can stay alive on our own. If you are breathing, it’s because someone fed you.
Tish Harrison Warren, Liturgy of the Ordinary, p. 71
Now you know why, in lieu of wedding gifts, we asked people to donate to Reality,
and in lieu of album money, all proceeds go to Reality.
Living in North Street neighborhood for two years taught me that the kingdom of God isn’t about “inclusion,” as though some are “in” and some are “out” until those “in” deign to “include” them. No. It’s about plain belonging. We all belong to God, and to each other.