The Accidental Fast – Day 1

This is Part 2 of 4 of my Accidental Fast series.

It was easy to skip my mid-day snack, but as my tummy began to rumble for lunch, I felt my mind panicking. What if I can’t physically fast for two days? What if my body can’t handle it? Worse, what if my mind can’t handle it? What if I’m weaker than I thought? What will I do for my hour-long lunch break???

These thoughts led me to feel lightheaded, like I needed to eat right away. But then I reminded myself: Carly, it’s been 3 hours since you ate. Nobody dies after not eating for 3 hours.

This is not impossible.

Day 1 was a beautiful day, and my office has some beautiful views, so I spent my lunch hour camped out at the top of the stadium, meditating, napping, and listening to the bells of Century Tower.

By 4:00, though, I became enraged. Why the hell am I doing this? There is no real point aside from proving to myself that I can do something, but there are many other, less hunger-inducing ways to do that. I want to eat. I want to eat. I want to eat!

By 5:00, I had mellowed out, but my frustration returned again around 6:30, when Kevin prepared his dinner:  a mix of caramelized onions, peppers, kale, and vegetarian beef tips. All I wanted to do was curl up in a ball and cuddle with Dobby, but I pushed myself to go to the library, Publix, and my friend’s birthday event at a local bar.

At the bar, I ordered a water, and perhaps because water was the only thing I had consumed that day, I could easily taste the different between water sources. The water I drank at work all day came from Culligan and tasted clean and fresh. The water at the bar was obviously from the tap and tasted stale and old. Normally, I can’t distinguish tastes of water; this night I could, but I gulped down the nasty bar water anyway.

When we got home, around 9:00, instead of playing video games for an hour, I took a long shower and curled up in the bed with my dogs and a new book (The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman). By 9:30,  we were all sleeping.

Some thoughts I had today:

  • When the bodies and minds (I mean this literally, as in animals, and figuratively, as in processed foods) of the food we eat are artificial, are full of chemicals, and have suffered, why do we expect a different result for ourselves when we eat it? Why don’t we care more about our food?
  • What we choose to eat is rarely an authentic choice. The thought or restaurant that occupies the most real estate on the landscape of our minds is what we choose to eat. Nearly every day, I receive emails from restaurants vying for my attention and my dollar. Normally, I just delete and don’t think about them. But today they had such an impact. Why should I allow a marketing team to dictate what I put in my body?
  • Our downfall as humans is emotions, and we use those emotions to choose what we eat. We had a bad day, so we splurge on rich food. We are in a rush, so we opt for fast food. We are happy, so we eat cake. But which state of being is coupled with healthy eating?
  • When we don’t eat, we don’t need things like napkins and we don’t create as much waste. In addition to destroying the environment by supporting corporations that mass-produce our food (which in turn divorces us from the fact that we too are animals), we destroy the environment by insisting on things that make us even less animal-like, like plates, napkins, utensils, etc. We have forgotten—perhaps purposely, perhaps unintentionally—that humans are animals too. This forgetting is so extreme that it does not bother us to destroy other animals and the environment because we see ourselves as separate. We have given ourselves a false other-ness and, in turn, a sense of entitlement and ownership for the other living things around us.

(Watch out…I’ll be a Jedi master in no time.)

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