Hello Kel!

Your Quit Date is: Friday, May 10, 2002 at 12:30:00 PM
Time Smoke-Free: 1583 days, 23 hours, 21 minutes
Cigarettes NOT smoked: 39599
Lifetime Saved: 10 months, 2 days, 11 hours
Money Saved: $15,840.00


“Change your mind, change your life.” It’s one of those catch-phrases the self-help gurus use. Dr. Phil? Cheryl Richardson? I can’t remember who I’ve borrowed this from in particular, perhaps it’s universal, but the other day I used this phrase in a bit of writing and it’s been hovering in my subconscious ever since, occasionally bobbing to the top to zing my conscious mind.

It’s no secret I’m on a mission to make some pretty big life changes. I want health, wealth, wisdom, strength, peace of mind and all that good stuff. And I know I can do it, because I quit smoking over four years ago and if I could do that, make that kind of a lifestyle change, then dammit I can do anything! The only thing holding me back is . . . well . . . ME! I need to change my mind and my life will follow. That’s what happened with smoking, that’s what has been shown to work in my life.

Yes, I maintain a healthier lifestyle when I’m off living alone in Bagtown than I do when I return to the the river. I do much better in my regular life than when I pop back to visit the old one. I never eat out. I make healthier choices at the Supermarket. I walk everywhere I need to go. I climb stairs dozens of times on a daily basis. I get a little lost when I go to my parents. They never seem to have the food I’m used to eating. I spend more time in a car in transit than walking. There are no stairs to climb. I eat out nearly everyday. I drink more wine and other alcoholic beverages. My system gets screwed up. I get cranky. And I usually gain weight from terrible food choices combined with inactivity. It takes a week to get back to normal. The shorter the visit, the better it is for my body. But lately it’s been all one week here, two weeks there. Banging me over the head with the knowledge that I need to figure out a better way of coping when I’m away from home. I need to make more effort to take better care of myself. I need to change my mind.

Ok, so there’s been this floating around my brain for awhile and then there’s been all the stuff with my brother-in-law’s high cholesterol and my nieces’ diabetes that’s really been making me take a long hard look at what I’m putting into my mouth. Yes, I buy a lot of fresh produce. Yes, I do only whole grains. And usually if there is an organic alternative, I will choose it. I never buy pop. I actually drink water and herbal teas now. I never have french fries. I don’t do the deep fried thing. I very rarely have any kind of sweets or junk food in the house. Nachos are pretty much my junk food and I’m not so sure they are truly junky because I’m in love with the whole grain tostitoes or else I buy the organic chips and salsa is pretty healthy stuff. These have been pretty big lifestyle changes for me, but I’ve successfully transitioned. I don’t feel like I’m missing out or anything. If I want a chocolate bar, I’ll go get one, but I very seldom want one. I get excited about salad and dressing and veggies and olives and sauces and different kinds of rice. This is who I am now.

Good for me! Right? Well yes, and no. I don’t feel satisfied, I’m not done. I’m not there yet. There’s more. I can do better.

Before going on a trip I avoid buying groceries. Because so much of what I eat is fresh, I don’t want to have to toss a bunch of stuff before I leave or come back to rotting things, so I just stop shopping and start getting creative with things in my freezer and cupboards. This last trip was no exception. The only different thing is that usually I go shopping the first day back to restock. Not so this time. I’ve been home almost a week and haven’t darkened the door of the grocery store. I’ve been eating stir-fry I had frozen, left-over from past dinners. I’ve been thawing half loafs of bread. I’ve been cooking chicken and pork and rice and frozen vegetables. The first couple of days I just thought I was lazy, tired from the computer trauma and trip, and I’d get some rest and then go shopping. But then as I walked past the store and didn’t go in, I realised I had no intention of buying anything until my cupboard was truly bare. Why? What is this all about? I’ve been pondering it all weekend and I think I’m there, I’ve got it figured out.

It’s meat. I’m doing everything right, except meat. Meat is like my dirty little secret, I don’t want to think about all the crap in it, now in me. And lord knows I don’t want to think about the animals alive and well. But having grown up in a hunting community it’s actually easier to think about the animals alive and well (I grew up seeing deer carved into steaks using hand saws in the kitchen) than it is to think about all the hormones and poisonous crap that those animals are fed that I now eat. I’m putting terrible things into my body. And I’m starting to think about this and the effects of this on my health and it’s really starting to bother me. So much so that I’ve been researching vegetarian and vegan. I have not been able to watch Peta’s Meet Your Meat video yet, because I know that’s the turning point for a lot of people. And I’ve still got chicken and burger and pork in the freezer. I’m flirting with the idea of vegetarianism. It is on my list as an experiment to try for one or two weeks.

Can I give up meat? Can I live without chicken wings and hamburgers and hot italian sausage? I really don’t know. But I feel like I have to purge my kitchen, lose everything and begin fresh (just like the computer files, there’s a co-relation there for sure) I have to try. I’m feeling very much toward meat like I felt toward cigarettes in the months leading up to my quit. I know it’s terrible for me, it’s poisonous, yet I still want it. But I gave up cigarettes. Maybe meat is an easier enemy. At least if I fail people won’t be tisking me . . . everyone I know eats meat.

Mood: deep in thought
Drinking: coffee
Listening To: girl’s soccer
Hair: unwashed

6 thoughts on “Change

Add yours

  1. Way to go on the quitting smoking and good luck with the meat.You eat way healthier than me.I really have to make a change in that department too especially since I had such a hard time the last 2 weeks.


  2. Thanks. Change can be a good thing. Damn difficult to get in the headspace to embrace it usually though. I guess anything worth doing is probably pretty hard to do. That’s what I keep telling myself. And good luck to you with healthier eating too!


  3. I went completely vegetarian almost 10 years ago, then about 7 years ago, one summer during peak bbq time, I weakened and introduced chicken and fish back into my diet. It’s been like that ever since. I find with ground chicken and even chicken bacon, I don’t miss red meat at all. I don’t know if I could go back to completely vegetarian as I find even with having no red meat, it’s a constant challenge with family, friends, the kids at school/daycare, etc. You’ve done fabulous with your lifestyle changes Kellie:) I need to get back on track with mine too, sigh.


  4. I’m really not eating very much beef at all these days. I can’t afford to buy it 🙂 So, it’s all about the chicken and pork. If nothing else, I need to cut back on meat consumption I think. It’ll be a start anyway. I think it’d definitely be more of a challenge if I had other people to consider into the equation, but where it’s just me, maybe the transition won’t be too nuts.


  5. In case some of you don’t know, I’ve never seen anyone enjoy a thick juicy burger like Kellie does…so this is definately a big step! Meat is my dirty little secret too…I gave it up in TO for awhile but then when I moved home my meat lovin man dragged me back in. Even if you started buying free range chicken, might help. Must be some available in Sackville.


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