Several years ago my father was diagnosed with cancer. It’s not something that I talk a great deal about because despite the fact that he has been in remission, it is still a very painful part of my life to revisit. He is healthy and happy and my family and I feel very blessed to still have him here with us.
Often times I get asked about my veganism and the motivation behind it. I would have to say that my fathers illness played a significant role in my “healthy” lifestyle. You will notice that I put the word healthy in quotations. This was intentional as it continues to be a work in progress.
I had been vegetarian for several years before deciding to go vegan. Food research led me to find the numerous links of processed foods to cancer. Even though I was not a meat eater, the dairy (in obscene amounts) I was consuming was just as dangerous. I cleaned up my act and cleaned out my fridge. I wish I could say that I eat only organic and absolutely no processed food whatsoever. I can’t. Here’s the thing (and this is a reoccurring theme in my life), I do the best I can. If the ‘best I can’ means that I zap a boca burger in the microwave while I try to cook my son dinner, do laundry, pay bills, house hunt and plan a baby shower for a friend…then so be it. I will put an avocado on it and possibly toss it in a hamburger bun (that I don’t necessarily check to see if contains traces of dairy). I have also been known to tear up a bean burrito from Taco Bell (minus the cheese).
I’m a busy vegan….judge away.
When I got pregnant with my son I began to research a little further. Not only did I want to know about healthy foods, but I wanted to know what chemicals I should be avoiding.
This is where things really got messy……what I have been struggling to let go of for the past few years.
Shampoo and conditioner. I honestly loved my expensive bottles that would leave my hair feeling and smelling amazing. I LOVED them. Then one day after researching sulfates and parabens, I decided to check the ingredients in my beloved bottles of hair care. Devastation ensued (that may be a tad dramatic, but you get the point). After confirming their ingredients, I couldn’t bring myself to ever use them again.
Over the years the same thing has taken place with my body lotion, soap, cleaning supplies, and more recently my moisturizers. I have been living in denial when it comes to my cosmetics. I don’t even want to look because I know it will be the end of some long and faithful relationships. I do the best I can.
Now here I sit writing this and it’s time I call myself out. The fact that I state that I ‘do the best I can’, yet I openly admit there is much room for improvement, means one thing really….I am lazy. I also seriously doubt that I am alone in this. I need to care more about my health than I do looking young. These products may leave me appearing youthful, but only because I will die at an early age from using them (again, dramatic. I know.).
I am a work in progress but I know that as long as I keep my focus on the health of my family, I am headed in the right direction!
I would love to hear any of your favorite natural products!