My Life in Words
Tips, travel, yoga, mentoring, life, and everything in between.
Marijuana, Meat, and Coffee. All things I enjoy or have thoroughly enjoyed. It's not to say I will never do all three again, I know my faults and at times we (generally speaking) will slip. I am however making a conscious effort day in and day out of not to do it. Submitting effort in each avenue of avoidance to stay on course of keeping my good habits, good.
I was not a big red meat eater. Going to the steak house with a cognate insatiable yearn for a Tri-tip or New York steak, wasn't my vice but I didn't mind it either. I have cooked steak and I enjoyed eating it. I prefer chicken if anything, and Iberian ham. I absolutely love a good piece of chicken with all the right anecdotes, all the succulents of good meat brought delightfully into my mouth while satisfying the carnivore in me. In fact, the three places where I have experienced the best chicken are quickly as follows:
1) Asolo, Italy - Approximately 12 years ago in a small Italian restaurant. Mild seasoning, a timely and patient waiting game for the main attraction to be put on the table. Divine piece of bird was eaten as the main course. Finger licking good.
2) Xiamen, China - November 2007 at 2am. Just finishing a gogo dancing gig with my girlfriend. There was a van sitting outside our modern village of bakeries, tea shops, and salons just below the apartment we were staying at. A cute little old man and a woman, could of been his wife or daughter, can't remember entirely. Obviously with no Mandarin on our end and no English on theirs, we somehow conveyed in exchange of hand gestures and trust of seasoning. Absolutely delicious piece of chicken.
3) Kingston, Jamaica, December 2014 - On my way to the retreat I was offered to teach at, there was a grill up on the side of the road in a town on the way to Long Bay Jamaica. I had told my driver that I was hungry and he asked if I ate meat, 'Hell yeah' was my response. We pulled over where he knew where to go, waited for about 10 minutes, and before I knew it, a 1/4 pound of chicken with a biscuit and seasoning was sitting in my lap. Top notch.
I have gone borderline vegetarian before on a few occasions, or have 'dabbled' with the notion of being vegetarian with moments of succumbing to the desire. It was and still is hard at times. When I do eat chicken, my personal recipe is chicken marinated in lemon juice, turmeric, rosemary, salt and pepper, slowly simmered to perfection that was just dandy to eat. That was my go to for protein and I began purchasing light meat from Steely Farms locally grown. Aside from chicken, Iberian Ham is my weakness, cold cuts as well. Weakness is the best word to describe it. Back when I use to travel to Spain regularly in my 20's, it would be such a desire to engulf in the tapas of fine Spanish meats. I never imagined I would take that step of becoming vegetarian. We are labeled after all, carnivores, and for the most part human beings need meat to survive, so we are told. But do we really? We evolved from being hunter-gatherers and those who indulge in meat, I have no problem with them enjoying it as I did myself. Despite being told we have evolved from hunter-gatherer, we have also evolved with eating greens far more effectively now with humanity being the way it is. We don't realize the abundance of nutrients are and can be surrounded with all on a conscious effort that we don't need to kill animals. So, personally, what changed in me? I will explain later.
I loved smoking weed, I engaged in my first puff when I was a teen, and took many breaks throughout the past 15 years. There would be months I would go without smoking Mary Jane, but I fell into the routine of smoking to relax, smoking for social gatherings, smoking to eat when I had no desire to eat, smoking to ride a skate board, smoke to smoke. It became a goal of mine to smoke weed in countries I visited. I claimed I wasn't addicted, and it was purely recreational. Yet, the recreational became habitual, and habitual became a necessity, then the necessity became a dependency. I had come to terms, finally, I was an addict.
There were times I did try to quit, but completely unsuccessful. It has only been a recent development of overcoming the dependency of mother earths goodness and I'm completely behind the legalization of Marijuana as well as it being beneficial to society. Some people do really need to smoke a joint and relax, laugh a little, be goofy, help to potentially eradicate cancer, seizures, and other health issues. So why did I quit and how did I? I'll explain later.
I LOVE the smell of coffee. The stifling euphoric scent of roasted imported beans triggering the secretion of desire was yet something else, I wouldn't imagine giving up. As my boyfriend and I discuss, there is something about the ceremony of coffee. Morning cuppa Joe, enduring. Mid day cuppa joe, riveting. Studying cuppa Joe, essential. Yet, recently (August) I opted to step away from the clasp of Joe coffee as his grip on my yearn was loosing it's effectiveness. What gives for all this?
Explanation on Coffee.
If any readers out there read my blog about the purge I went through upon departing India, I think it is partly to contribute. I also do fully believe in a conscious shift in looking inward to understanding the underlining admission to our habits. Although I discussed coffee as being the most recent habit/addiction I recently have stopped (I can't say I have fully given up permanently as I am in the trial and error stages, it is a process after all), there was primarily one reason why I did, Adrenal fatigue.
I am one who fully supports mid day siestas, I not only appreciate little naps, I strongly believe it's vital and beneficial to the mind and body, psychosomatic relation. Rest is good for a reboot. Having said that, I do tend to get tired and/or fatigue during the day, so of course coffee is a great pick me up. Lately, within the past months since I have been in class, I have taken notice how chronic fatigue has become increasingly more prevalent feeling completely and utterly, wiped out.
I'm a double espresso throw it back type of gal, and since I've been noticing the fatigue, I thought perhaps I should up the load and reload. Well, I get the initial charge of a caffeine kick in the beginning of coffee intake for about an hour and in a sudden instance, the engines begin to shut down. When I would ride passed a coffee shop, I definitely could feel a trigger, that addictive click. I watched a video on endocrines and particularly watched a video on youtube with Dr. Berg who had a video in regards to Adrenal Fatigue. My sleep was off, and I felt completely depleted. Now I'm not doctor or expert, I can only be a specialist to my own body by analyzing how I feel in it's functioning format. He mentioned coffee being one of many ways it can cause Adrenal Fatigue, so I thought to myself, "Ok I'll give up coffee for a week and analyze my body." That week turned into two weeks, since I was successful of one week. That second week transitioned into a third week, and here I am going on my fourth week of no coffee, but instead rather Green Tea and Matcha Green Tea.
I have noticed the fatigue has subsided extensively and though I get my clock work siesta triggers, I don't feel drained, depleted, and/or lethargic. I've had no withdraws (at least I don't feel as if I have) I'm not moody, short tempered, and I have substituted a copious amount of green tea, which allegedly isn't a bad thing. Added benefit, it's cheaper at some places to purchase. :-) I have noticed my energy is more stabilized, and I'm not saying it's entirely based on the coffee intake, but since I've eliminated coffee, I do feel balanced. Maybe it's subconscious, the placebo effect seems to work, thus far. I can't say I'll never drink roasted ceremonial delicacies again, as of right now no less, it's in full effect. I made up my mind to completely stop drinking it and each week builds on the week before. From coffee to Matcha Green Tea.
Here's some great information on Matcha green tea.
Explanation on Marijuana.
Having been a habitual smoker since my teens with bouts of steadfast breaks sprinkled in between with some failed attempts to quit, I don't reflect too much on how I managed to quit, but more so as to why I couldn't kick it before and what was I holding onto. When I reflected upon my dependency, I had to come to terms I was using it for suppression on several levels. I understood that I had an overly active mind, and it also played into my self victimizing of thoughts and anxiety. On top of that, my mind was on hyper drive or remember everything to the point I wanted it to just, stop. I had felt for such a long time while not facing the false ego, that I desperately wanted to live in the moment. I wanted to decry all the intuitive confusion of my subconscious and the adhesively poignant derailment into a fix method of subdued present moment. I loved smoking weed but until I realized fully and accepted fully it was an 'in denial' clutch, I kept telling myself it was for leisure. There are factors as well, it helped me sleep, it heightened sensible elements, it helped being around certain people as a passive anti-autonomous way of dealing with surroundings. It was, a trigger enhancement for engaging partially to dynamic conversations when invited rhetoric was presented.
So how did I manage to quit? The day before I left India, I was stoned on hash and I said to myself, "That's it, I'm done." A mindful consciousness took over. Having just experienced a physical purge to now a conscious purge of what no longer serves for the betterment of myself, I had to make a choice and the choice was just. When I departed India, as I have stated in my recent blog about India, a part of me had died when I ascended into the skies en route to Thailand, and I couldn't even fathom the shift that took place. I just knew it was time and I haven't looked back since. I was able to just quit without any yearn, any desire. Even being around it, I have found that I was able to completely detach from a habit I was convinced I submitted to. Done and dusted. Who knows if I will ever dabble again, a test of discipline and regulated consumption. I say ever, because so much can happen and change in this lifetime but I was able to kick a habit as been said, 'Cold Turkey'.
Explanation on Meat.
In India, the family I stayed with, my bro/teacher whom I studied with in the Philippines was born into vegetarianism and I knew I had to give up meat for a couple months while living there. It wasn't bad and I thought for sure I was going to start eating meat again once I left India. It wasn't India that gave me conviction to drop meat eating. It was, albeit with the support of being in India, by watching a film which showed baby chicks being slaughtered by a tractor in a film called Samsara. After watching the film, I then somehow stumbled upon a few more articles of fois gras and how geese are tortured by being force fed into bloated bags of fat for pure pleasure of a supposed French delicacy. I saw how cows were hung on hooks in a factory in India. I thought how in the f*&^ can humans who are in this producing system have no empathy for such animals who cannot speak for themselves and I'm a f*&^ing hypocrite. I have to be responsible for myself and myself only.
More and more I was leaning towards sticking to vegetarianism and it was HARD. Quitting the weed, powerful victory. Quitting coffee, transcended into a balance of energy. To fully stop eating meat, was the hardest thing I have done and it's still difficult up until now. I have slipped a few times where meat has been in a few meals of mine, and I had to do my best to pick it off. I attempted to eat a Chicken Cesar Salad, took one bite of the chicken and I couldn't. I picked off every bit. There have been a few times I made a mistake where I thought something was vegetarian and it wasn't. When I left India and arrived in Bangkok, I knew I was in for a challenge as there is meat everywhere and I'm all about street meat. But I said, I had already started this process in India, let's see how long I can keep this up. It's been 6 months of hard discipline. I went on a frenzy for a few months of eating french fries all the time, all the time! I didn't feel different internally, I did feel like I was packing on pounds from the damn french fries! So I wondered why did I stick to it, and it really boiled down to, inhumane.
The way meat is processed, especially in the states amongst grocery stores and super markets, along with seafood. My country is sending off chicken to China to be processed and returned, the hormone injections, the process, baby chickens being completely slaughtered in machines, piglets getting intestines ripped out alive, or heads bashed into the ground, saddens me. As much as I love eating chicken, ham, and beef, I had to be responsible for my actions. Fish and crustaceans I can't entirely give up though it's no different to eating meat, something is being killed and injected with hormones. Hypocritical, yes admittedly and I'm making a conscious effort of being selective pescetarian to full vegetarian. Changing the diet is quite the challenge but can be done. I don't know if I'll ever go full vegan as I love yogurt and cheese, especially CHEESE to the moon and back, as well as eggs. Yet to give up my Iberian hams, my full monty sandwiches, beef burritos, and lemon turmeric chicken speaks volumes on my behalf.
Overall Feeling and Reflection.
I don't mind anyone eating meat around me, it's their choice nor smoking marijuana as well as drinking coffee. These conscious decisions have been made during a transitional shift I apparently was ready to do, at least for now. Here in Thailand fresh fruits and green veggies are in abundance, easy to purchase and relatively cheap. The real challenge is going back to the states and keeping the diet solid. Organic food isn't as cheap, but I know I can stick to not puff puff passing or cracking out on a coffee kick to come crashing down, I am optimistic of those conjunctions, at least. I have to take responsibility for myself and if I do fail, I do fail. It doesn't mean I can't make changes again and try harder the next time around. Though, if I have managed this far to stick to this new set of disciplinary actions even here in Thailand, then perhaps I can stick to it indefinitely.
In conclusion, for those who have read this and thought about making a shift or cutting a habit off, changing diet, or whatever it is you feel compelled to alter, what may help you further into a conscious shift, it can be done. Now, it comes down to why I chose to write this blog to share with others why I smoked weed, ate meat, and drank coffee. How does it benefit me by openly expressing changes, dichotomies, and blogging. I had to, I had to write through what has been toying in my head for a few weeks. Yoga is about body mind and spirit and all three play in formulation of each other to balance who you (I/we) are on this rock we call earth. Your senses become heightened, and your depiction of life is enhanced with the power of now. Now, you can make a change for the betterment of your soul so walk yourself through it and know you have the will power to do so.
In humanity I trust we can progress to full evolution upon the right path, case by case, one change at a time.
Well written Des. Yoga is indeed a lifestyle! We feel that shift once we fully understand it. I'm pescetarian myself but do realize that these sentient animals has an important role to play. We are in a long journey of awakening and this step by step realization shoot us directly to that path of higher consciousness. I love the raw you! Original one my friend :)
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