Living Whole in the New Year


Loveys, I'm a dessert kind of girl. You know this about me. I love cheesecake and chocolate pie and brownies. The holiday season, of course, brings gingerbread cookies and pumpkin pie and  peppermint kisses. All of which make me so happy.

Then came January first. I decided to try Whole30. Really, I had a feeling I could do with a reset from my deep love of all things sugary.

So here I am. (I've never eaten this much fruit in my life.) And I confess I'm thinking of turning Whole30 into Whole21 and stopping early. Seriously. All these fruits and nuts and eggs and All Things Healthy are somehow making me gain weight.

The goal wasn't to lose weight, but certainly it wasn't to gain. So. I might slowly reintroduce a piece of cake into my life soon.

Food is such a part of togetherness. There's something about sitting around the table with close friends, eating something delicious, pouring glasses of wine, talking late into the night--those moments are some of my absolute favorite. For me, they are life-giving. But equally life-giving is the need for less after indulgence. A cup of coffee and a quiet morning, time for reflection. A clear mind and a helpful to-do list. I need both. Connection and the beauty of food and wine together. Then a break.

Quiet.

Less.

I feel like I need that in so many ways--not just a reset from sugar. I've been a little bit of a homebody this month. Some of it has to do with the fact that if I'm going to eat somewhere, I pretty much need to bring my own food. But also, I've slowly been organizing cabinets and drawers. The terrible part of this is that things always seem to get worse before they get better! Still, afterward, I breathe easier. Yesterday, after chaos for weeks, I made myself organize Lily's room (well, as much as I could before I fell over from exhaustion). It was time. Too much chaos makes me start to twitch until I have to do something.

Balance is hard to come by, especially in the thick of family life. This is definitely true for me. But whether I'm over here re-setting for 30 days or 21, I think it's good to just know ourselves. To be in tune with who we are and what we need.

Do you ever feel the need to explain or apologize for the things you enjoy?

To enjoy dessert. To enjoy food. To enjoy music or dancing. To enjoy TV and movies. Or maybe to enjoy taking pictures. Or shopping. Or clothes. Or being alone.

I think sometimes we feel we have to temper down who we are or what we enjoy, maybe so people know (or assume) our lives are balanced. The older I get, the more free I feel to just enjoy what I enjoy. To strive for balance always (and make a change when I know I need to, like this month), but to be okay with the fact that the things I enjoy might not be what someone else enjoys and that's okay. It doesn't invalidate my feelings. It just makes us all more interesting.

There are a lot of difficult things that come with getting older--but the freedom that comes with age is, to me, one of the good things. I think living whole is more than just the food we eat. It's embracing who we are meant to be.

For this year, I want as many life-giving moments as possible, for myself and my husband and my children. What about you, lovey? What are you passionate about? What needs more time this year? What needs less?

Let's get to it.

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