So there was depression, but not just depressed, I was getting a bit manic at times as well. I read back on one of my blogs where I spent a week in Grand Rapids MI. I remember finding the restaurant Stella's, and I was elated. This would be my first real external "vegan experience" for me. I talked with everyone there, ate and drank myself sick (a good sick, mind you). The food was awesome, the people were amazing, and the atmosphere was electric. I was bouncing off the walls.... Then the next morning, I woke up in my hotel, drug myself back at our show, and was snapping carrots, and cursing my coworkers as they ate fried chicken at lunch. What a night...
At the time I didn't know what was going on. I was just getting along day by day, dealing with one meal at a time. In retrospect, I think I can isolate dome distinct stages,.. but I don't think I followed the classic model. If I think about it in the classic 7 stages, I have to shoehorn a little, but it would look something like this:
- Shock or Disbelief - I would say that since technically my "grief" was completely self induced, this stage was short lived. I was more excited to get this things started, whatever this "thing" really was.
- Denial - I live my life by this word, so I'm a denial "pro". My biggest denial in this transition has been the magnitude of my decision. Trust me on this one, I'm pretty good at making monumental decisions without thinking them through. 'nuff said
- Bargaining - I skipped this entirely, or I haven't hit it yet. I was excited to get this going, so I didn't bother to try and negotiate any deals. If was doing this over, I may have tried.
- Guilt - I'm better at dishing this than receiving it, but the only guilt I am feeling about some of the more shameful things I've eaten in my life. I should write a blog about that
- Anger - I've been good in this department. I would go out on a limb and say that this stage has not only eluded me, but I think I've been much more chill as a result. This could be the calm before the storm (read on).
- Depression - I'll admit, I've struggled with this quite a bit in my life, but my life has improved dramatically over the last several years. I went through this stage in the first few months of the change, and it was mostly due to my lack of knowledge on what to do.
- Acceptance and Hope - Lets not go here yet
OK, my situation really doesn't match those stages all that well. I sort of went through my own unique different ones. Not to say I wont go through a number of other additional ones. So let me give you my real stages as I have experienced them. (note, results not typical, your mileage may vary)
- Euphoria - I was excited to no end to start this train rolling. I didn't think beyond that moment what it meant, I just knew I was Vegan baby. Suck on that!
- Reality - Oh shit, I am freaking hungry and there isn't a damn thing I can eat. Thank God the PB&J is vegan, because I'm pretty sure thats what I'm eating the rest of my life.
- Depression - What the hell did I get myself into? I cant go out anymore, my friends are harassing me. I feel like kinda freakish, and my only road food (Subway) uses veggie patties with eggs. This sucks vegan tofu balls.
- Bi-Polar - I was in my element, I was high as a kite, enjoying every moment, taking everything in. Eating, Drinking, Laughing out loud. I was having a blast. I found places to go, people like me!!! Then I woke up in a hotel room, alone, and craving a Denny's Grand Slam.
- Superman - I'll give Milwaukee some credit for that, 10 weeks on an expense account, and you'll start buying pretty girls vegan cupcakes too. That city was enough to make me a vegan hero. @milwaukeevegan was a big part. She helped me navigate the city, and I did so with reckless abandon. I was a vegan player in that town.
- Regrouping - This is my current situation. Travelling to Milwaukee didn't set me back so much, as it gave me an unrealistic view of this life. Its pretty easy when someone is picking up the tab. Now its up to me again, and how I handle myself at home. Dealing with real life, day by day
So here I am entering what will amount to be the next set of phases which I am oh so excited to being to endeavor. I've gone through a lot of emotions, but I've come back to a more stable relaxed state, that I think is going to carry me for a while. Emotionally, I would have to say I have stabilized considerably I gone through a lot of transitions, but I know that even 7 months into this, I'm still only scratching the surface of what this is really all going to be about.
I have to note that this blog is dedicated to a brief, but profound twitter session I had with @celeryinthecity She shared with me her stages, which got me to thinking about mine. This was my inspiration. Thanks for her eloquence:
- Meat is kinda gross man.
- Soy cheese has less calories.
- Let's see if I can be vegan.
- Whatever, man.
- I am so sad people eat these beautiful little animals, do they have NO souls?
- RAWR, STUPID F***TARDS.
- The present. <3