I Am Authentic.

I’ve been absolutely terrible at this whole blogging thing. I had all these grandiose plans of what I was going to do, what I was going to open up about, what I was going to bake and craft and share about, but I think, you know, maybe it just hasn’t been the right time these past couple of weeks. I shouldn’t feel like I’ve failed. Maybe I just come to it when I feel that calling.

Like today. I called out of work. It just felt like I wanted a mental health day. And I know that some people think that’s just a bullshit excuse to be lazy (and I’m sure it absolutely is sometimes) but honestly, today I feel like I want to just take a breather. And just a moment ago I was drawn to open WordPress for reflection.

My husband and I took a roadtrip to Asheville, NC and the Biltmore Estate with some very good friends yesterday (another good reason for a day off – I’m tired!). We’ve been there many times but it’s always a different experience depending upon what season you’re going and who you’re going with. We had so much fun exploring the grounds, laughing at silly jokes, and people watching.

We’ve only known these wonderful friends of ours for a little over a year now but I feel that we have known them forever. You know when you just instantly connect with people on your own wave length.

At the beginning of the new year, I made a vision board and it’s incredible how I’ve seen many of my goals for the year beginning to manifest in my life. One of them being to surround myself with positive people, to let go of things that no longer serve me. It’s important to have friends who encourage you to be your very best *authentic* self. And I have no doubt that the universe has brought these friends and others into my life for this purpose.

I’ve been exploring the inner workings of my mind in an effort to become my most authentic and happiest self. This exploration just within the last few months has been so powerful. I have been venturing into areas I’ve always been drawn to but that my ego has always seemed to get in the way of. Things that I’ve felt called to but was always taught are taboo. Growing up in the Bible Belt of North Carolina, things like tarot cards, crystals and meditation have never really translated well. Replace those things with going to church, reading your bible and prayer – anything else was of the devil.

It’s really taken me years to figure out that tarot cards and crystals in particular are NOT EVIL, people. Tarot card readings are not a means to speak with demons and spirits. What they actually are is a means to connect with your higher consciousness and listen to your intuition. It is a tool for bringing those thoughts and feelings that you’ve pushed to the outer rims of your consciousness back to the light. And my crystals are helpful friends who allow me to create a positive space – whether I am meditating with them or if I bring one or more of them to work with me to shield from negative coworkers, or even doing a tarot reading with them – they radiate certain energies that, along with mindfulness, aid me in day-to-day life. These resources resonate with me in an unequivocal way.

My goal in my life is to live meaningfully and authentically. To be truly happy. To explore the world and to learn from it. As I approach my thirties, this is all becoming more important and necessary than it has ever meant for me before. It’s incredible how things begin to unfold when you tell the Universe or your higher self or God what you want out of life. When you put your authentic self out there, you begin to attract the right kind of energy back to yourself.

If there is anyone reading this blog post who is unhappy or even just feeling a little off lately, I urge you to connect with yourself and let go of your ego. What is it that’s distancing you from your potential? If you are looking for resources for guidance, I recommend checking out Chris and Sara Oakley of Soul In Wonder (they’re on Facebook!). They are incredible life coaches who are so passionate about inspiring others, especially Vegans, to unleash their true selves. They have been a divine sanction for me in my journey thus far.

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Becoming An Herbivore

I’ve never been much of a writer, at least when it comes to writing about myself. But as I embark on this new chapter of my life I felt called to share it with complete strangers in the process. 🙂 My hubs and I just began our vegan lifestyle as of January 1st! And since making this change I already feel the universe calling on me to open my mind and share my experience in this new life on this platform.

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Today I have been living my plant based diet successfully for a month (plus a few days)! And although I know that isn’t impressive at all, I do feel it is something to be proud of myself for! I will admit to you all here – I cheated once and ate cheese because it was still in the fridge. But in my defense, I hate to waste food and I hadn’t yet discovered Follow Your Heart cheese. We eventually offered the rest of our cow’s milk cheeses to our neighbors though. Omnivores for all our lives, we heard our calling to dive in and make this very important change in our diet! For our health, for the animals, and for the environment – this is without a doubt a win, win, win.

I was inspired to begin this blog because I made a decision last year to start listening more closely to the inner workings of my soul. I’ve always felt something deeper inside me than living for this material world that I grew up being taught was so important. “Go to college, get your fancy degree, get a fancy job, buy a fancy house, and fill it with fancy things – THAT is what makes you successful!” There have only been a couple of times that I have had life changing epiphanies, one of those being a day in November 2017 – something finally clicked and I realized in an instant that I was going to change certain aspects of my life because there were parts that no longer served me. And since then things have begun to naturally fall into place. One being the decision to become vegan. So I want to keep a log of my journey, connect with other soul searchers and maybe even inspire others to begin their vegan voyage as well! I hope to share what I have personally learned from my spiritual growth and continue checking in with monthly updates of our plant powered progress as young vegans.

It has certainly been an interesting month. With the help of beautiful friends and various social media platforms, we have officially bid good riddance to the consumption of all animal products! That’s actually one of the first things I noticed while making the switch – the unbelievable support system of vegans wanting other vegans to be successful. I honestly don’t know if I have ever felt so encouraged to do something good for myself. Friends I haven’t spoken to in years and folks I have never spoken to in my life are reaching out and even commenting on my Instagram posts of our dinner concoctions with words of encouragement, advice and praise for our lifestyle change. It’s truly been uplifting and even heart warming actually. But I think that’s really the basis of what veganism is about – you know, other than not eating animal excrement. It’s about being a good human in general. And what good of humans are we if we aren’t lifting other humans, ya know?

In absolute honesty, I have never in my life really looked at the ingredients in the foods I buy from the grocery store and put into my body. And wow, have I been living in the dark. Hubs and I had a fairly healthy diet pre-vegan. Don’t get me wrong – we LOVE to eat. We always have. I mean we live in the south so we love us some fried foods of course, but I’d have to say we really ate those kinds of things in moderation. But up until a little over a month ago, when we actually started prepping for our transition into veganhood, I never really cared to look on the back of the box for the ingredients! I was essentially just taking the front of the box’s word for it and trusting the advertisement – eek. I have been brainwashed by food companies for the longest time and I never would have understood that without making this change. I had never watched Food, Inc. or any of those other big food company documentaries until after we made the switch. If I’m being honest with myself, I have totally been avoiding these documentaries all these years. I knew I wouldn’t like the truth and I’ve been living in ignorant bliss swatting that inkling of truth away like an annoying housefly. The horrifically inhumane treatment of animals, the lies we’re being fed daily by false advertisements and commercials, the suspicious connections between these big money corporations and our government. It’s absolutely outlandish the amount of power these corporations have – and we’d rather live in the shadows than to face this head on. But I can’t say much…I let that fly buzz around for so long.

We’ve had a lot of fun experimenting with new foods and tweaking some of our most beloved recipes. The experimentation has been the most fun – we’ve always loved cooking (especially hubs) and trying new foods. I never thought chickpeas could be used in such a variety of delicious ways and I never knew jackfruit even existed! I’ve made a lot of yummy soups (it is Winter after all) and discovered the deliciousness that is the Gardein brand. I made my first ever black bean burger and baked the most delicious cauliflower crust pizza I have ever eaten in my life. I’m starting to develop a new and better relationship with food.  My body has certainly felt this transition but after a few weeks I’m feeling back to normal. I no longer feel gross after meals or like I’ve overindulged.  I am more aware of what is going into my body and I no longer feel guilty for consuming animal products!  I feel more free and lighthearted about meals and that has done wonders for my conscience and my soul.  I plan on sharing some of my favorite recipes so far as well as my new adventure embarking vegan baking – there’s a cheesecake in the works!

I’m so excited for this new chapter of my life and so excited to share with you every step of the way. I feel more in tune with my body, mind and soul than I have in quite some time – and that’s not just from my new diet, but through other aspects of my life that I will also open up about in blogs to come. I hope that if you are not content or happy with your life that you might decide to make a change for yourself as well.

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