“Dear World…Who Am I?”, said the confused little eater one night.
“Last month i only ate plant food.
Today, i wanted an omelette – and i ate it.
Tomorrow, i think i might have some fish.”
In innocent curiosity, our dear protagonist wondered…”Am i a vegan? Am i a vegetarian? Am I an omnivore?”.
Becoming aware of the free flowing relationships with these categories for the first time, the question arose…”Am I a fraud?”
The little eater went to bed with one big question that night. “Who am I?”
I’d like to talk to you about your identity, in relationship to food.
I will offer my personal experience to illuminate a point here.
- You see, at the moment, I am a “Vegan-tarian”. I just made that word up. Why? Because when i tell people i’m vegan, and actually eat that way strictly – and suddenly one day they see me eat a piece of buttered popcorn at the movies, or a bite of challah at Shabbat, or my shamelessly forgiving attitude towards the minor sprinkle of parmesan that accidentally made its way onto my salad at a restaurant – THEY WANT TO GIVE ME THE STANK EYE!
“oh no she didnt! she’s a vegan! thats not allowed! what a food-slut!”
and that is …*snooty voice here* terribly unacceptable, dahling.
So why am i sharing all this?
Because i’d like to inspire you to get your “I dont give a sh*t” on, and fearlessly label and re-label and un-label yourself as you please.
today you’re vegan. tomorrow you’re paleo. next week you’re fasting. next month you’re nothing in particular. next year, you’re just you – and people gotta deal with it.
“wait, wait!” – the crowd cries!
“but you’re not allowed to just change your mind like that! you must sit in these label-boxes, like its your job. If you change all the time, you must not be a serious or committed person.”
i’m here to tell you, NO NO NO NO, you absolutely DONT need to subscribe to that kind of thinking.
If you need someone’s permission to do whatever-the-FriedPlantains you want, and not feel guilty…well, now you’ve got mine.
It does not make you food slutty, or not-serious, or too whimsical or whatever comment someone may have for you if you eat in a way that is reflective of your body’s unique needs. Honor your deep recognition that your needs for optimum health and happiness are a dynamic, ever-changing set of requirements that fluctuate with all kinds of factors over time (like season, environment, fitness level etc).
Your Diet IS NOT A RELIGION OR A MONOGAMOUS MARRIAGE OR A BLOOD OATH. be free, young grasshopper, be free!
You know what you can remember? Haters Gonna Hate. SO, let them do that, and smile. Cause it aint about you, really. Its mostly about what you are reflecting to them about themselves, which they are uncomfortable with. They probably really need your compassion more than you need their approval.
Have you had any crazy stories about people telling you what you should or should not eat OR be nasty about your shameless commitment to being authentic rather than dogmatic? Share in the comments below!