As I shared yesterday, we did a Whole 30 eating plan in the month of January. Since I knew I could not keep up with all the prep and planning and cooking and still have time leftover to blog daily or even weekly, I decided to compile it all into one post. Read on for my daily brain dump.
Day 1: It could have started better. Failed at the breakfast frittata and also at homemade mayonnaise. Egg salad lettuce wraps I had planned for lunch required the homemade mayo so it’s not even 8:00 a.m. and already losing big. At least my menu is totes adorbs.
We decided to try the Whole30 eating plan in January. If you haven’t heard of this, the idea is to eat clean for a whole month then add certain foods back one at a time to determine if there are foods that negatively impact your health. I had long assumed this was just another fad diet until a good friend explained to me the real reasons to do a Whole30 and I decided we should give it a shot.
Let me be clear: we were not in this to lose weight. If we do that, the next time you see us, you won't. And I already blow away in the wind easily. Rather, we were hoping to improve the way we feel. We want to be done with fatigue, poor sleep, sugar cravings, headaches, injuries that take a long time to heal, etc.
I don’t do many things halfway so I dove into this like …well, I dove in hard. I bought the Whole30 book and got busy.
Okay, so in all seriousness, that went pretty well. We not only survived but I think we are onto something we can keep. Today I’ll recap what my expectations were going in and how that actually turned out.
Expectation: People say this is hard, but that’s coming from folks who hate to cook. I love to cook so this should be easy.
Reality? Um, no. NOT easy. You have to read every label. The following items are banned because they tend to cause gut inflammation in many people: soy, ALL grains, dairy, legumes, peanuts, alcohol, carrageenan, seed oils, corn, sugar, and all sweeteners of any kind. Try finding a packaged anything that doesn’t contain any of those items. You are making your own clarified butter, dressings, sauces, spreads, etc. That takes HOURS. And if you cannot eat bread there is no such thing as grabbing toast for breakfast. You have to cook. Did I mention I am not a morning person? And WHY is sugar in E. V. E. R. Y. T. H. I. N. G. ???
I have not blogged in close to a year. I could tell you I got busy (true story) or didn’t have anything that felt newsworthy enough to write about (also true), but honestly, it was subconscious avoidance.
Blogging was beginning to feel kind of whiny.
I could have done the long run-down of posts playing out how we processed through our time in Egypt, but that felt pretty self-indulgent, and if there is anything the world could use less of right now it’s self-indulgence (and probably Twitter). Plus I was avoiding processing through Egypt at all because it was hard and I just wanted to put it behind me and get back to work.
Head down, earbuds in, everyone leave me alone, please.
Anyway, I did try to write posts several times through the year but I always closed the laptop and backed away from what struck me as just a brain dump of all the feels. I could not (still can’t) shake the feeling that if our main aim as Christians and missionaries is to “know Him and make Him known” then writing how I feel about all the things is missing the point entirely and drawing all the attention to myself. In the words of the fish school in Finding Nemo, “Blah, blah, blah, me, me, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, me, me, me!”
And I couldn’t just go with humor because nothing funny happened last year after my big win at the Colorado Downtown Pavement Surfing Championships. Or perhaps it did, I just can’t remember. Or cannot hear it over the tinnitus I was left with. That was a really hard hit on the noggin.
The unfortunate result of all this is that I didn’t think about Egypt enough and I went on two project trips that would have been far more impactful had I bothered to give them some brain and emotional space and energy. Blogging is a huge help to me in working through all the thoughts and allowing God to speak through the experiences. I can see and hear Him better when I am trying to put words into a form that I think will be readable and relatable to others. Things get compressed, reshaped, extruded into something new and revelatory. I head out on the next project trip in better mental shape to experience more and to Know Him and Make Him Known. I tote that around with me in my everyday life too.
So anyway, this is my relaunch into what I hope will be a more regular bit of posting. I’ll probably end up writing about Egypt a lot in addition to project trips, our work here in the US office, homeschooling, and getting into my favorite cathedral - Creation. Maybe I will even go back and work through stuff from last year that we never shared. It will be a real mish-mash of all the things because that is where God resides and speaks and moves. We only have to be listening.
Eyes up, ears open, speak, Dear LORD.
We are missionaries with Engineering Ministries International, based in Colorado Springs, and traveling around the globe to serve.
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