One of the most exciting parts of welcoming new food back into your life is… welcoming new food back into your life. In the past my biggest fears in terms of food were (1) too much food/over-indulging and (2) carbs, focusing mostly on wheat-baring foods as well as anything from the grain family. Breads, pastas, you name it… I stayed clear of it.
About a year ago, my ‘healthy’ self insisted an inability to process grains. I would tell those who questioned that with everything I had put my body through in the past, it was harder for my stomach to handle it. Another lie. In all honestly I hadn’t tried rice, bread or anything else to be able to say such a thing. So, while planning a follow-up lunch date with my friend, her suggestion of ‘sushi’ caused me to become a wee-bit… frantic. I immediately threw out: “I can’t eat rice. Hurts me belly” and laughed it off.
Today. I ate sushi.
Now, to you… or most people, this mightn’t seem like much of an accomplishment. I mean, let’s call a spade a spade here: sushi is not scary. It’s sushi. And, furthermore, it is an acquired taste and by no means something that I need to eat. The issue is, before everything happened, I loved sushi. So, today, I went out for sushi.
I started my meal with their ‘house salad’. Basically, this consisted of shredded lettuce, two slices of tomato and the smallest 1/2 of the smallest egg I have ever seen. Oh, and a few slivers of cucumber.
Following that, I enjoyed the 8pc Haru Roll (which was shrimp asparagus, cucumber, nori, avocado and brown rice. If you’ll notice, this picture was taken after consuming three pieces of amazing sushi! You might also notice that the wasabi has remained untouched in the background. Yep. I don’t do green spicy sauces.
The main point which I am attempting to reach is that I let myself eat something I have wanted to for so long. It won’t end here, mind you. No no. My cravings have gone from sushi to… a chicken burger, to frozen yogurt, to a stir-fry with rice… it’s endless. Bagels! One thing I have been craving for a while is a nice cinnamon raisin bagel with plan cream cheese. One day, I will prevail.
All of this said, I do plan to make it an effort of mine to be ‘healthy’ and ‘balanced’ in this whole process. Instead of looking at myself as trying to gain weight, I am going to say “achieving my happy weight”, whatever that is… for me. So, I would probably opt for half a big bagel, or a thin bagel… because bagels are pretty heavy. But I’d still eat it. I might not go for low-fat cream cheese though. Maybe this is wrong of me, but it is what makes me happy… right now.
My triumphs does not end there. In the past, whenever going to a restaurant, I always partook in a pre-eating ritual: looking up the menu. Why? Not because I wanted to see what cool things I could try; not to check out what amazing dishes I could enjoy. No. I wanted to check to see what dishes I was allowed to enjoy. Even got my parents and loved-ones to say ‘is there anything there you can eat’? Or, I would – in a panicked voice – say ‘will there be any options for me’?
While it is true that for some (say, gluten intolerant, vegan, etc) eating out can become a bit of a struggle, for me… it should not be. Even if the location is not known for it’s dishes brimming of health, there is always way. So, I’ve decided from here on out, I will never again say: will there be anything there for me? Because I will find something. I will.
Today, our first destination did not offer brown rice. As I mentioned before, while I am actively pursuing weight gain (or, happy weight), I am not ready to abandon my beliefs on whole, unprocessed grains. My friend knew another place, so we decided to go there. As a result, I really didn’t have the chance to look at the menu until two minutes before ordering.
It was almost breath-taking.
The lure of looking at a new menu and considering my options. Wow! One of my favorite things to do is to look through a bunch of books and/or movies, and pick one to read or watch. I could spend hours doing this. Sometimes, the idea of the movie or book is more enjoyable than actually watching or reading it, but regardless, I love the concept of choice. Instead of knowing my game plan before entering… I just went.
Now, again, I still will probably look up the menu beforehand. Why? Because I do like to see what options the restaurant has. But sometimes you don’t have that option. You must walk into an establishment, blind, and choose. The fact that today I didn’t even think twice about changing locations (without a clue what would be on the menu at stop two) was a huge feat for me.
I am getting there. :)