Before a two-faced craving sat on my left shoulder and whispered in my ear, today's yummy food was going well. For breakfast I enjoyed a Raw nectarine cobbler. Fierce-as-in-Fabulous Teenager and I had to drive into L.A. for a college open house, so we decided to treat ourselves to smoothies from our new favorite Raw restaurant, 118 Degrees, in Costa Mesa. She enjoyed a Merry Monkey, made of nut milk, banana, almond butter, cinnamon, vanilla and agave. I ordered a Chocolate Supreme: Raw cacao, cinnamon, banana, macadamia creme, agave, maca, super greens, hemp seeds and lucama--so many ingredients! Spur of the moment, we decided to sample the Sweet Bread with Almond Butter and Agave.
We drove into the city and sat through an interesting presentation. Fierce complained that I hadn't fed her lunch. I reminded her of our on-the-road treats, and she called me a freak for being satisfied with that as a meal. All was as it should be, until the drive home.
I'm not a vegan (at least not yet), but I rarely consumed red meat, even before I went mostly Raw. So why on earth did a philly cheesesteak dominate my thoughts on the way home? Although I was mostly obsessing over the grilled mushrooms, onions and peppers, I wanted the whole sandwich, so much so that I was planning to run out and get one after we got home. I reasoned that I'm not completely Raw, and I refuse to fall into the trap of deprivation, which only leads to more frequent and intense cravings.
For better or worse, I couldn't convince myself that the cheesesteak place gets its meat from a sustainable farm, where the cows roam wide green pastures, selecting their favorite grasses to chew. I couldn't kid myself that they'd then be "humanely slaughtered." Now there's an oxymoron for you. Maybe I could have shrimp, or even scallops instead. No, I wanted that dead cow flesh!
Fortunately, it was 7:30 in the evening and already dark. I'm not a fan of leaving the house after nightfall. Weird maybe, but I like to be in my flannel pjs with my car tucked into the garage after sunset. So I looked for an alternative to giving into the craving. In my fridge, I found a container of Raw chili (brazil nuts ground with salsa and spices). I threw this on a few crackers and after making a meal of these, was pleased to find I no longer desired that cheesesteak!
I'm not 100% Raw, mind you, and I can't promise to make it through the rest of my life without another cheesesteak. (Though I'll definitely try for a raw substitue.) I can't stress enough how much I reject the notion of deprivation, but when I consume non-raw foods, I'd like them to be mostly made of whole plants. On the occasions that they're not, I'd prefer not to feel guilty about them. I would've repented that cheesesteak. That delicious Raw chili left me with no regrets.