Friday, August 7, 2015

My Label-free Journey: Exploration, The Struggle, + What I've Discovered So Far...

Hi friends!!

It's amazing where this label-free lifestyle journey is taking me. While I believe the vegan lifestyle is hands-down one of the most beautiful things I have ever encountered, my openness to try something else has also been a blessing. Sometimes I've fallen, and fallen hard. Other times I've opened up to a new discovery. And it's all making me grow.

It's hard though. It's hard not knowing what I call myself. Sometimes I'm tempted to go back, to be struggling once again to try for 100% raw or 100% vegan or gluten free or whatever else I can think of that will label me as a "healthy eater". I even think of calling myself "mostly vegan", just for the sake of having at least a little bit of the label. But I'm learning that life is not so much about cookie-cutter rules. It's about overall values and morals, YES. It's also about LOVE, and happiness. But for me, it's not about the cookie-cutter rules anymore. Just to be clear, the vegan diet was not what did this to me - I was the one. I would restrict myself to eat this way, and only this way. My body became so desperate that I began to eat more and more bad things, vegan and nonvegan. All of a sudden, it was no longer about health. It was about the label. So I'm done. I'm done with all these labels. It's time to begin a new foundation for myself.

I guess my reasoning is... I need to find what works best for my body's health and what also lets me be happy, and -yes, I'm going to say it - I WANT TO LIVE A LITTLE. There are people who live very different lifestyles from what I have been living, and somehow they look so happy, so radiant, and are the loveliest people, always giving to others. Perhaps what I've been trying to do in the past has not been inclusive of my overall happiness... perhaps my way is not the only way after all. 

As I write this, I am afraid, and I am vulnerable. But I want to share, because we are all human, and we all relate to each other. Perhaps to some people right now, I have failed. Well, that's fine. I'm learning I can't please everyone, and I shouldn't try to. But I really feel like I'm getting somewhere.

Real food. Real, local food. As self-sustainable as possible. From plants... and from animals, even. And the occasional, perhaps even sugary, indulgence - at this point in my life, "living a little" is pretty important to me.

Yes. I said it. I'm no longer professing to be a vegan, because if I did that, I would consider myself very two-faced. I would have two lives - a vegan one, and a non-vegan one. But I don't want that. I want to be real, I want to be one person, I want to be RAW in my clarity. So there you have it.

Well, that's all for today.

Here comes the next part, and it's a question I'm asking myself too:

What about the blog? 

Friends, I don't know. I don't. The thing is, I LOVE my blog, and have no desire to get rid of it. But I want my blog to update with me - usually that's what I do, I just update it. But because I've been exploring so much, making such radical changes, I'm afraid. I don't want to hurt anyone who's been inspired by this vegan lifestyle, but I really do want to change the blog as I go. Its a special place for me too.. Anyhow, I wish to pray about it.

When will there be more posts?

Another question I've been asking myself. I don't know. I think I'm going to give this some time. I may get rid of my Instagram again, just so that I can take this time to reassess, to reevaluate, and to grow without the pressure of everyone watching and analyzing.

So... goodbye for now. I'll miss writing in here, but I think to take the next few months off will be the right thing to do.

Much love,

~ Natalyn

P.S. While I'm no longer exclusively plant-based, I will FOREVER believe that fruits and vegetables are by FAR the best things you can give yourselves. Please feel free to come to the blog whenever, or email me with recipe questions, etc. I'll be more than happy to help.

P.S.S. I also do not wish to appear as if I am trying to put down vegans or the vegan lifestyle. They are wonderful people, with lovely beliefs, morals, values, etc., and their diet is what God initially intended for us.