I wish many times that my children did not have to grow up in this culture. There are many reasons for this but for the purpose of this post I will just give one reason today.
Or rather, the imposter's sitting on the grocery shelf that look like food but really . . . they're not.
I was reading about margarine this morning. And let me tell you how thankful I was that it was butter on my toast! But I grew up on margarine. Butter was for special occasions like Sunday Faspa or to use in Christmas baking. For one it is expensive and my parents didn't have a lot of money. But it's also very normal. Almost all my friends grew up on margarine. When we got married I bought margarine. Now I buy butter, but when we first switched over it was incredibly hard to buy butter. It is expensive. It hurts the wallet. Does it really make a difference?
But I bought it and now it's normal and the thought of margarine is repulsive. But in the beginning I really had to fight against the culture's ingraining to my thinking.
And I find it that way with every switch I make. And when I go visiting people have foods that I remember eating and enjoying. Foods that make me question, 'maybe I can eat it just this once?' And sometimes I do. I don't like being rude about things, but I'll often try to eat the healthier stuff that's there but sometimes it is just plain hard to refuse it because I used to love it.
Other times it is actually quite easy to not eat something I used to love. Certain patterns have been changed in my mind now and I find it easy to say no. I used to love new years cookies. LOVE. After we changed our diet I could hardly imagine the new year without them. So my Mom made me some and I ate them and I loved them. This last year my sister made some and brought them over and the smell of them was repulsive and I couldn't imagine eating it. What changed? I changed. I used to love Pepsi. Drank it every day or almost every day. After I stopped drinking pop I craved it. When TR would open one I would want one too. Now most pop is disgusting to me and I don't want it. I have one sip and I'm done. Occasionally I can drink a ginger ale but mostly I don't even want fizz anymore.
Okay so what am I trying to say? I guess it boils down to this. If you are struggling with your diet and wishing that you ate healthier. If you read my posts about our diet and feel bad that you still have so much in yours that I've taken out - I really want to encourage you to relax. Take it one step at a time. Make changes. Sometimes even make hard changes. But don't beat yourself up about it. I understand how hard it is to change when all your life you've eaten this way. It's hard. It hurts the wallet. Sometimes you crave the things you don't want to eat anymore. That's okay. I'm here to say it gets easier. And it takes time. We've been making changes for over 2 years and there's still things in our diet that I'd like to see replaced. I find it's been a work in progress for me. Some people are able to make complete changes right away. But for us it's been progress. So relax. And then make a change. Just one change. You can do it!!! See how it feels. And who knows? Before you know it it might become easier. And you might be feeling better. And you might not mind that it costs more. (I'll try to do a post on the cost it's been for us soon :) But please don't feel that we're perfect or that we have this healthy eating thing down pat. We don't. We're still learning and changing.
For my kids I hope that they will grow up to love healthy food. That they will have good memories of eating healthy food. That they won't grow up craving bad foods for special occasions. I hope that they will grow up to like fermented foods and that the taste won't be disgusting and hard to swallow like it is for me. That it will be normal and good to do fasts and cleanses and that they will read labels and be aware of the way food is processed. Mostly I hope that they will be healthy and strong despite this country and culture we call home.