Thursday, August 11, 2016

Why I Am Eating Meat Again

If you've been reading along for a while now, you'll possibly remember this post where I talked about going a full month without eating meat. Aside from one or two "cheats" I stayed fully meatless for three months. So why have I started eating meat again? Let me tell you.

Please enjoy this unrelated, but beautiful, picture my sister took on her cruise to the Bahamas

I want to start by saying that I didn't go meatless for moral reasons. Had that been the case, I would have gone fully vegan. I understand the horrors animals face and I also understand it's not right to treat them that way. That said, I still don't think people who eat meat are terrible people.

I went vegetarian because I was hoping it would be healthier. I wanted it to lead me to eating healthier foods. Simply put, it didn't. I don't eat home-cooked meals often. I wish I did, and it's a goal of mine to start. But I was eating a lot of cheese pizza and cheese calzones. I had a few veggie burgers, which are fantastic. But whenever we would order, I would get something not-so-healthy.

After a quick (read one page) Google search, I can't find any science to back this up. I can't even find pseudo-science. But, when I went meatless, I started having issues with my legs and ankles. They had swollen to more than twice their original size. Even my family was noticing it at picnics. It may or may not have been just due to my particular diet, not necessarily the lack of meat, but when I started eating meat more regularly my leg swelling went down. I'm talking, within two days my legs were almost back to normal. To me, that's a sign that I was doing something wrong. I still have to talk to my doctor, but if the swelling stays down then I might have figured out part of the problem.

And I don't eat meat all day every day. I have cut down, and mostly cut out red meat. When I do eat meat, it's usually turkey or chicken. I'm trying to get back into the swing of things.

Something I haven't talked about is that my sister that I live and work with, Amanda, got a promotion. Awesome for her, and I am so happy for her. She deserves it 100%. But this lead to a very stressful past few months for me. As soon as they started looking to promote her, I started feeling the stress and anxiety creep up and up until it was almost unbearable.

Why? Well, we worked in the same department. She was not allowed to be promoted while I still worked in the contact center. Uh oh. Does that mean I have to be fired? Is it a done deal? Am I losing my job? What's going on?!? Those were the questions I was bombarded with on a daily basis for months. It sucked, because my anxiety is already high just being a temp, but this made it exponentially worse for me.

The good news, I didn't lose my job! Yet. I'm still a temp, so only time will tell. But they were so great. They were looking for a position to transfer me to so that they didn't have to let me go. I am so grateful they didn't just say "bye Kaitlynn!" It pushed out the time for my sister to get her official promotion, and it extended my personal anxiety, but I am still happy. Also, they didn't know I knew, oops....

The reason I'm talking about this in a post about meat eating isn't because I got completely off topic. It's because now that my stress levels are on the decline, and back to the normal levels I live with, I have more time and mental capacity to think of the important things.

I made the decision to eat meat again because for me, it's the easiest way to cut back on extremely unhealthy eating. And if I don't eat another calzone for months I won't be the least bit upset.

I'm not going to apologize if I disappoint anyone. I didn't announce my meatless status to gain any favors. It was just a life event that I wanted to share. I'm not announcing this because I feel like I'm cheating or like I'm doing anything wrong. This is just how it is.

Have you ever gone meatless? If you are a vegetarian*, what are your biggest struggles? Strengths? Let's chat in the comments!

*Corinne, if you read this, hi! I hope you're not disappointed, but tips are still welcome if I choose to go meatless again!

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