I have been working on a holiday gift guide for you. I thought, "Oh, that will be informative. People will enjoy that." The more I work on it, though, the more I become pretty grossed out by the whole idea. Not that everyone's holiday guides are gross, or their perfect Christmas recipes, or their 25 fun ways to decorate your house with Starbucks cups, but come on. Blogs are becoming all the same. It makes me not want to read or write anything, because I see the same thing on ever blog. I can't even tell, half the time, who is writing these blogs. Am I getting posts from you or your ad revenue? There are tons of people that do this to pay the bills, and I don't fault them for it, but it's not what I want to read and it's not what I want to write.
Awhile back, I decided to stop writing about my struggle with body image. I thought that my younger female readers might not be empowered by an overweight girl bitching about her weight. I didn't want to contribute to the idea that being heavier means I am less than. But I do struggle with my weight. I struggle with my self image and self worth. The truth is, I have had a very trying past few months, and if I can't talk about that, then why should I talk about anything.
I have been putting more recipes out into the world, but they're not recipes that I slave over, recreating them three or four times until they're perfect. They are just stuff I thought up to cook and photograph. I don't have the luxury of being at home all day, waiting to catch the light in my house at the perfect time and staging my shots. I go to work, I come home, I make food, I take a couple pictures, and I eat it. I have to learn that that's ok, and my blog is never going to be one of the beautiful ones I used to drool over. There are so many pretty, glowing, green goddesses clogging my bloglovin feed, and I'm just bored. I don't want to see pretty things every day. I want to see the messy. I want to hear about the struggle. The blogs I love to read are the messy recaps of people's daily lives, with occasional easy recipes thrown in.
My weekends are full of writing blog posts to put out during the week, and somehow during this process, I lost my connection to writing. When I was posting at the end of the day, I was dumping out my feelings and emotions, and that felt good. Putting up 5 mediocre recipes with bland descriptions a week is not fulfilling me in the slightest. Maybe I don't post every day, maybe I post twice a day, but I want to get back to honest writing.
Recognizing that I'm not perfect is also something that I struggle with. I am an over achiever, and I like to do everything right, or in fact, want to be praised for doing a good job at something. I will be the first one to tell you, I do not always do veganism right. I try my best to promote great food and be a voice for the community, but if some things in my house have leather and I don't ask the waiter if a veggie burger has an egg in it, does that mean that I shouldn't be a voice? I think that people don't talk enough about how truly difficult it can be to obtain a lack of animal products in ones life that is worthy of some people's definition of "vegan." Of course, I wouldn't want to promote that this lifestyle is hard, but I am here to say that after over 6 years of it, there is a certain level that you have to become comfortable with. When I first went vegan, it was maddening learning all the things that had animal products in it. Would I not get a flu shot because they may contain eggs? Would I drive a car if the tires contained animal by products? Can I even talk about this without getting yelled at by the online vegan police? We should talk about these things. This is why we are a community. Veganism is amazing! It is a do-able lifestyle that benefits animals, the planet and yourself, but I don't think that you have to think you are a failure if you slip up or make slight concessions at a restaurant or decide to get a flu shot. I have made my peace with the level of my veganism. It is still helping save millions of lives and get the word out that more people are in this community, and what an amazing community it is. So many of us delve online to find people that think like we do, and the vegan community has built an amazing array of voices and activists. Don't worry, I am not going back to meat and cheese because it's it's difficult to maintain a perfect vegan lifestyle. I love this way of life, and I believe in it, and I guess I'm just wondering if anyone else out there makes small concessions to continue living life and then feels guilty about it.
I still want to share recipes and products I like and restaurants where I ate, but I want to share them because that's what's going on in my life, not that a holiday is coming up so I need to come up with 10 cookie recipes that will give me more pinterest clicks. I want to ignore all that noise and just talk to you. Social media is amazing and wonderful for getting your stuff out there, but when all you care about when you're writing is how much traffic you can generate for your bland recipe that looks like every other recipe this week, you have lost your way. I feel like I have lost my way, and I intend to get back on my own path.
I hope that you will stay with me and come here to read, for good or for bad. If you are struggling with your weight or your veganism or your direction in life or your happiness, I am right there with you. If you would rather look at pretty pictures of me drinking daily green smoothies and talking about how much better life is off booze and gluten, I can recommend a wealth of blogs that already do that.