Between the bright sun peeks and the rain

It has been somewhat of a hard week. Sporadic weather matching a wave of ups and downs as we make our way through our first days of the Whole30. I’ve been exhausted, grumpy, energized, and elated. Without a doubt, I am overall very positive about this change. Pasta-lovin’ boyfriend is struggling a bit and I don’t know how to help him. I’ve tried consolation, I’ve tried inspiration, I’ve tried tough love and education. But I’m coming to the helpless realization that perhaps there’s nothing I can do – this is his path to walk. All I can do is my part to make the most of this time for ME. I have a hard time being selfish. Well, that’s not completely true! I have plenty of my own faults and pettiness. But I take on other people’s stuff quite easily. My constant challenge is to raise my energetic walls so that I don’t take on the energy of everyone I encounter. This necessary distance is part of why it takes me so long to make friends. I have a hard time letting people in, knowing how to tell myself it’s ok to be vulnerable. And when it’s someone you are intimately connected to, with whom you often actively try to drop those walls that separate people, it’s really hard to figure out how to pick and choose when to put them up and take them down. For example, he had a huge week of exams last quarter that he barely made it through, he was so overwhelmed; And for my part I was a stress case, triaging with all the power and resources I could muster. We all circle back to this issue of finding balance.

As for me, I’m staying positive by focusing on the exciting new flavors and ingredients I’ve been experimenting with, and the times I’ve been mindful of self-care. I’m slowly learning how to catch myself when I go to the unnecessary stress place – if we’re running late and I’m sitting in the passenger seat with my jaw clenched, I try to lean back into the seat and take a breath, telling myself that to be late is not that big of a deal, everything will be fine. Another really tough one is identifying when I’m hitting my tired breaking point and learning to say no to whatever we’re doing and go to bed without feeling guilty or like I’m missing out.

Here’s some of the awesome food I’ve eaten this week:

Sun dried tomato & leek meatballs

Sun dried tomato & leek meatballs

Ground beef curry

Ground beef curry

Grilled flank steak

Grilled flank steak

As an apartment-warming present, we received a cute cherry red BBQ, which we broke out on the back porch and grilled up a whole ton of steak and chicken – SO delish! Also, canned tuna has saved my sanity a couple times this week… who knew how difficult Whole30 grab-and-go foods would be?

In other exciting news, I found a really helpful blog that’s inspiring me to be more organized with Whole30 meal planning! Dheana & David share some excellent recipes and pointers on this – so that’s what my days off will be all about – thanks guys!

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