Wednesday, November 7, 2012

This is Exactly Why I Created This Blog

I had it in my head at some point that this blog would serve to help me navigate those choppy waters of eating well. When I first went vegan, it was like I had sworn off everything except for Chik'n Patties and Oreos.

Needless to say, I felt crappy all of the time. Plus, my face broke out like crazy. I don't actually know if it was related to the eating, but I decided to see if eating better would help that, so I bought a cookbook and I eschewed packaged foods altogether.

That went surprisingly well, and turned me into a person who loves to cook and who actually knows how. With my cooking abilities came a set of skills that makes being vegan much smoother. I can plan a months full of meals and snacks, I can pack all types of foods easily, I can always find something to eat even at the worst of places.

However, I was very foolish yesterday, and I assumed my eating needs were covered at a work function, and that day ended in disaster. I am sharing that disaster with you now, as it's vegan related, and because I am about as red faced as can be. This sort of public confession will help that go away faster.

We went on a wine tasting trip. It was great. I did the tasting, then played Settlers of Catan for the first time while everyone else ate. I had checked on the catering situation, happy to bring my own lunch, but was assured that the lunch was hummus and dolmades and olives and such, and that I would be covered.

The reality was that the food was covered in cheeses, yogurts, egg sauces, and butter. I had some olives, and thought to myself well I'll be a hungry Pete, but it won't be the first time.

Had I known that there would be no food, then I would have had no drink. At the very least, I would have brought something. Too late for that though, and it seemed like all was well, and we played and carried on, and then were herded back to the giant van.

Then, as my gentleman friend likes to say, things got grim.

The rolling country hills, the hot air of the defroster, and my weakened belly came to blows, and I threw up. In a van. With 14 of my 18 coworkers.

I don't remember much. Someone drove me home. I passed out in my car for hours before I could stumble into the house.

I slept and slept and now, 24 hours later, I still feel a bit terrible. I've lost a lot of productivity over the two days.

Worse than all of that, I'm horribly embarrassed. Only the woman who ordered the food knows that I'm vegan. Many of them have commented on my slight frame, which makes me worry that they'll think I have an unhealthy relationship with food, since I didn't eat at all. I know I can't control any of that, but it bugs me.

This whole situation is one that reflects a few of the challenges of being vegan. I had nothing to eat, and so I got ill. I drink more than I probably should in general, so it's not a simple case of my not being used to it.

I fell into the trap though. I believed for a minute that someone else could be trusted to meet my needs. It's not her fault, and I don't know if the caterers knew or not. The bottom line is this: I need to eat vegan food regularly throughout the day. That's a responsibility to falls to me alone.

So I will go back to the days of ALWAYS carrying a lunch with me. Worst case scenario, there's great vegan food where ever I go, and I eat my lunch for dinner.


  1. Oh your poor thing :( HOpe you're feeling better. You're so right about always having to be prepared. I always bring back up for work things where they've said they'll supply food except for one time recently when I was assured it would be ok after the caterers had listened to my previous feedback and of course it wasn't!

    1. Thank you! I'm still feeling a little out of sorts, but I'll go back to work today at least. I always do to, but like you, I was assured that it was covered.

      Lesson learned!

  2. I've been there too. (What do you MEAN, the DC Wine & Food Festival has no FOOD? That was an ugly drunk, I tell you.) I hope today is better. Wishing you lots of rest and hydration!

    1. Thank you! I am recovered and even faced my coworkers. That went surprisingly well. :) I need to make the ultimate vegan emergency food kit.